Tuesday, July 20, 2010

more adventures in the ER

I went to the ER yesterday, because I have nothing better to do with my time.

Yeah, I'm full of sarcasm. It never fails when I have big deadlines or lots of stress that my health just flairs right up. I feel like a broken record to those I am accountable to: ah, here's a doctor's note... yada yada yada.

This time I presented with what felt like to me a migraine but with very odd, new symptoms. Anyway, long story short, I knew it was neurological because certain things just weren't adding up. It wasn't hypotension, low-blood sugar or my usual moments of loss of control (dizziness, blurred vision, confusion etc.)

So ya following these symptoms so far? Yeah, they sound a lot like a TIA (transient ischemic attack) otherwise known as a precursor to a stroke. Now of course I'm no doctor, just a girl who knows her body very well so I let the dr. be the judge.
However.
This new generation of doctors don't seem to realize that Truncus Arteriosis is a cardiac condition! I had to remind dear young dr. that even though we're looking at neurological we can't rule out influence from TA. He politely reminded me that I'm a young woman and my arteries are totally fine: no cholesterol, no blockages or other things you'd look for in older people when you're looking at ruling in TIA etc.. In his opinion TIA was highly unlikely.
I politely reminded the lovely dr. that although I'm "young" I'm actually very old for what I'm living with.
So, he does the tests... the blood tests and the CT scans.
CT is normal - just as I thought. It's not my lot (in life) to have TA and some weird brain lesions or tumours.
Blood tests on the other hand were not normal - not even for my normal. And that's when the lovely young dr. became more serious and decided to refer me to the stroke clinic and a haematologist (for which I already have an appointment with tomorrow!). Some of my numbers that I've followed since as long as I've been recording my numbers, were really high. Not the usual high for a TA patient, but the highest they've ever been in the history of me tracking them (over 22 years).

So, naturally I have to have yet another phlebotomy stat. I hate them. I know it's a really simple procedure as simple as giving blood but this time they are likely going to take a litre from me. I know I won't get away with wiggling out 750ml (last time my Cardio man wanted a litre, I asked for 500ml, he met me in the middle with 750). I know I'll probably be thinking clearer within 2 weeks of having it but it's going through it that I just don't want to do.

I am really tired of being sick. I'm really tired of this flaring up at the most inopportune times. I was absolutely shocked over my numbers because I thought these meds (the designer drugs) were doing such good things in me. And perhaps they are, but my body still does what my body will do: make up for my broken heart.

So in the end, the dr. that thought my neurological symptoms had nothing to do with my cardiac condition was wrong. It was interesting watching him go from being so sure of himself to so confused to realizing that mybody just isn't normal and that even though my vessels may not have plaque build up that perhaps, just maybe I have way too much blood to be pushed through my healthy veins.

I'm amazed at how fast I'm being seen at the "blood clinic". I guess they think this is another emergency. But I'm not amazed that in the end, it all comes back to my TA. It's systemic and I don't understand any doctors that could think any other way. Perhaps that's also my background in Holistic health: it all has a role to play in your overall total, complete health.

My chronic illness has become such an inconvenience. Perhaps I've had a really great few months where it hasn't really gotten in the way. Now that I'm used to it being a bit more stable I am functioning at what looks like normal: working, supplying my own benefits (rather than be carried by someone else), living a little, working with deadlines and sick days etc. As it stands I have a giant deadline looming and of course, my blood decides to multiply itself at a rapidly increasing rate.

I don't have time for this!