Sunday, December 05, 2010

The Next Part

Alright, so irritated as I was (am) with these lesions, the next step was a spinal tap. Lumbar puncture. Giant needle going into my body while I am curled in a fetal position as my India-born Nuerologist is behind me (he's the guy with the needle) and it was NOT a fun experience, but it wasn't as bad as I had heard about. The first needle was the anesthesia and that poke hurt like a bitch. And the second needle? Well, I could tell it was larger, and the feeling of just a Wrongness, this pressure in the middle of my body was just...ick. It didn't hurt, it just felt waaaay odd.

And when I first got there and had to change into a hospital gown I didn't realize there was a fricking camera in a black bubble on the ceiling and somebody got a free show, but I've dealt with that.

I waited weeks for the results of that test. Finally, when I couldn't stand it anymore, I moved my Monday appointment to the Friday before. Long story short (and it was short because my Dr India doesn't really like to chat. He mutters and I catch a few words and ask him to repeat it. I continue this way until I have gleaned all the information I can from him) I have fricking Multiple Sclerosis. Blast it.

The next week I went to the hospital every evening for five days for an IV drip of a super-steroid called Solu Medrol. Dr. India said it would help reduce the inflammation on my optic nerve and perhaps my vision would improve. So I said Why The Fuck Not? (I didn't really say that.) I educated myself on the process beforehand. I read the studies and side-effects and benefits and disclaimers and balogna and decided to do it. My vision is that bad. So I went and I didn't have to get undressed, which was awesome. I got t o sit in an armchair and watch a tv with real channels(!) as a nurse jabbed another big fricking needle in my arm to put poison in me. It hurt and it tasted HORRIBLE ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE the nastiness of the nasty. It wasn't a taste, more like a ...smell-taste. It's hard to describe. I could smell-taste the saline they cleared my vein with first too, but it was tolerable. The SoluMedrol tastes like dirty old copper pennies in the back of your throat. Oh lord it was HORRIBLE. Sorry, I'm remembering how HORRIBLE it was.Yech! Anyhow, I had a pain in my arm and the drip had to be slowed, which meant it then took forever but that was all right because I got to watch the new Hoarders which is always good.

I got to leave this thing in my arm (the needle and some tubing) so they didn't have to repoke me. It was bandaged up quite nicely. I learned after the first night to put some cotton or gauze under the tubing so my skin wasn't hurting pushed against it all night. This was hard for me to deal with. It's not that I hate needles. I give blood on a regular basis. It's just the whole...thing. I don't understand it. I hate IVs. I begged my OB/GYN with my last pregnancy to please don't let them put an IV in me pleeease but got to have one anyways dammit and all I did was bug the nurses until they let me take it out. I didn't want a needle to come home with me! I suffered through this for five days. The horrible taste? It wasn't AS bad as the very first time, but it was still gross. And everything afterwards tastes okay in your mouth, but as soon as it hits the back of your throat ICK. I learned to eat before I started the treatment.

Next time we're going to talk about the side effects from the SoluMedrol. They were superfuckedup and I just got over them 9/10. 9/26 was the first day I felt "normal" since going through this treatment.

Thought You Should Know

In May I had a sinus infection. I get them all the time. I've learned to deal with them naturally, meaning no meds. I'm not a person who likes to take pills and medicines. I'd much rather not take anything, but I'm certainly not opposed to in ibuprofin for a headache and some Tums for heartburn, little stuff. I absolutely hate to take antibiotics. I have developed a love/hate relationship with a Neti Pot to deal with the sinus infections. It's awkward but it works. This is where it all started.

I had just finished using the pot and was looking in the mirror. There was a smudge in my line of vision. I walked out of the bathroom into the hall and the smudge in my right eye was still there. Everywhere I looked with my eye was obscured. I took of my glasses and cleaned them, put em back on...smudge!

It just got worse over the next few weeks. The smudge was sometimes darker, colors were one eyeball was shaded. A television screen a shade too dark. Offputting, yes. Irritating, yes. It was Summer and I live where it gets HOT. Northern California. Summers can get up to 115 degrees, sometimes even more. It was hot outside and for some reason every time I went outside in the heat I got SO FRICKIN TIRED that I could barely function. It was almost like I was drugged I was so tired. But guess what? As soon as I cooled down, I was fine. Normal me. There was also the embarassing problem with going to the bathroom. All of a sudden, if I had to pee then godammit go go go gotta go right now hold moly kinda pee it was. I'll admit it, Internet. I peed myself one time.

I went to my Eye Doctor. She sent me to a Better Eye Doctor. Better ED was very pleasant, took the time and effort and tests into helping to figure out why my vision was different. He told me that everything was fine in my eye, which basically meant it was behind my eye that was the potential problem. And here it is, what changed at that moment in my life. It's as if now the globe just sort of...tilted a little on its axis...but of course, it was nothing. Sitting in Better ED's office, he mentions that I should go have an MRI. I really hate the idea of big metal clicky-clacky things radiating my brain for pictures, so I told him I would think about it. He told me that I was the right age and sex (female in her 30s) and we lived in the right place and that I might have Multiple Sclerosis.

I went to my GP for a physical and for bloodwork to rule out anything abnormal. Turns out I had a severe Vitamin D deficiency and everything else was fine. I gave up drinking coffee, switching to herbal tea. I gave up artificial sweetners and alcohol. I waited and waited for my vision to get better, to feel better. It didn't. It seemed like my vision just kept getting worse, but really, it wasn't getting better. Not worse. But not better.

So I went and had an MRI done. It was not scary, the nurses covered up my toes so I wasn't cold, blah blah blah. No big deal. I tried not to think about what was being directed towards my wonderful brain tissue. It wasn't a bad experience but I would rather not have to do it again. Eventually the results were given as my wonderous brain has lesions on it. Lesions! Even the word sounds nasty. Diseased. Not happy. Fucking lesions on my brain.