(no, not the condiment I can no longer have…I’ll explain below)
Twenty fourteen seems to get weirder and weirder for me.
During the last weekend of October, I didn’t feel well. I mean really didn’t feel well. I was constantly exhausted, had zero energy, was constantly bloated, and everything hurt. Especially in my gut.
I thought rest would take care of the exhaustion, and everything else would follow.
By Monday, October 27, I felt awful enough to call my brother in law to ask his advice. I described my symptoms and he suggested I take ibuprofen (i.e. Advil). I didn’t have any so he had my sister bring some to me. I got tired of waiting for her to show up and took Tylenol instead because the pain was borderline unbearable. After I took it, she dropped by with the ibuprofen. I couldn’t take anything else until midnight, so I went to bed.
Woke up Tuesday morning thinking I felt a whole lot better than I had the night before, and that I would go out and run errands later in the day.
I went to the bathroom to pee, then suddenly felt sick to my stomach. Next thing I know, I’m puking up what looks like a gallon of blood. Even I know that’s not good, so I called for the boys, but since they were still sleeping, I knocked on Jeff’s door, since his room is closer to mine and told him what just happened.
He got Dean on the phone, who told me to go to the emergency room. That meant waking up Daniel, who probably had gone to bed maybe 3 hours before, to drive me to Integris’ ER. Meanwhile, my shirt is covered in blood. I just put on my slippers, a jacket, and away we went.
Long story short, I was admitted to the hospital…again.
A CT scan told the doctors everything they needed to know…none of it good.
I have some serious cirrhosis on my liver for someone who doesn’t drink, and the cause of it is what they wanted to find out. I also had fluid in my abdomen which is why I was always bloated. Also, I apparently have an ovarian cyst, but that’s a different issue (though it might explain why I haven’t gone through menopause yet. After all, I AM 50 years old).
So, after not being able to eat anything for nearly 24 hours (not even ice!), I’m hooked up to IVs, a heart monitor, a blood pressure cuff and a little sticky thing that monitored my pulse, I finally got some ice chips. I swear I was never so glad to see frozen water in my life, because my mouth felt like the Mojave desert.
The next day I had a endoscopy to see if the blood I threw up came from my esophagus or elsewhere. They didn’t see anything significant, just that there was some damage from acid reflux (you mean that wasn’t heartburn?), and I was placed on something called Protonix, which I gathered was a heavy duty version of Nexium (the “purple pill”). It’s what’s known as a protein pump inhibitor, or PPI, as it inhibits the overproduction of stomach acid.
Then they attempted to do a paracentesis, in which they stuck a very long needle into my abdomen to remove the fluid that had built up. They didn’t get anything because it was too close to a couple of vital organs. So they added two (what, one wasn’t enough?!) diuretics (water pills) to my meds. So now not only am I not having acid reflux, but I’m peeing up a storm, too.
And since the problem I’m having is with my liver, I was a little jaundiced, too. I probably had been for a while, looking back (you mean that wasn’t a rather nice bit of sun on those hot days?). Now I look more like me and less like a character from “The Simpsons”. I think that’s what the vitamin K shots were for (?)
I was put on a low sodium diet, which is why I can’t have ketchup, spaghetti sauce, and a whole grocery list of other stuff. This is a permanent change, whether I want it or not. No more fast food, no more soda, no more pasta cooked in salt water, no more ramen (yay!), no more quickie meals full of salt!
I still have to have a liver biopsy done, but I have to have it done at Integris Baptist Hospital in OKC. Just in case things go awry.
How much more “awry” can things get? I can’t think about that, because I know and that scares me.
Meanwhile, I’m one sick Stef.
And this is where it’s @ !~