27 August 2008

Why Bother?

Why bother trying to be healthy when your body repays you with treachery?

Minimal acceptable gall bladder function is 35%. Danie D does it with 10. My doctor says that means surgery. Surgery means more tests. I also have some kind of hernia as well, caused or exacerbated by acid reflux.

I'm annoyed. My doctor told me not to leave her office. She can read my mind. Craptastic!
~ Danie D.
Courtesy of my Verizon PinkBerry

19 August 2008

Pop Rocks & Barium

The testing is complete. Now I'm on to my next adventure of the day: a hair appointment.

Sitting in this chair gives me plenty of time to reflect on what I experienced and learned today. First, let me tell you about the third and final test. It had the longest wait and was the most entertaining. I had to take a shot of chopped Alka Seltzer tablets, with a shot of water. The tablets made me belch uncontrollably. The doctor tried to stop me, but I couldn't even stop myself. She wanted my stomach to be full for the tests. So I swallowed the burps and tried to do what I was told. It was not easy.

The next step was to drink Barium. It's a chalky liquid that can be easily followed on an X Ray. First I took a gulp and swallowed. Then I took a gulp and held it. Then I sipped slowly until the doctor told me to stop.

Perhaps it would behoove me to try and describe the scene. I started on a bed, which can turn to at least an 89 degree angle. It might turn all the way to 90, but I was upright at 89 with the bed (now vertical) behind me, My head was turned as far left as possible and the X Ray machine was in front of me. The pictures were coming up on the right and I was bummed not to see them. Eventually I did go horizontal, and was able to see all the wonders inside my torso.

My ribs looked strong. My heart looked smooth. My stomach looked big. It looked like a Christmas stocking, with a little arrowhead tip. That triangle is the duodenum. It's where ulcers form. Mine looked healthy, and so did my stomach - aside from the fact that it was filled with appeared to be black liquid. The doctor told me to think about eating (which was really easy since I hadn't eaten in 15+ hours) and as I told her what I wanted to eat, liquids from my stomach started pushing. I saw them do what I can only describe as "splooging". It was more than squirting and stronger than dripping. I saw my stomach juices "splooge." It was awesome.

So the doctor said my stomach was fine.then she added: "but your gallbladder isn't working so well." That was news to me. I mean I was sent there for gallbladder research, but up until that point, no one had bothered to tell me anything. This doctor seemed to think I knew. She curled one hand into a fist and pumped it open and closed. That's what a gallbladder should do. She curled the other hand in to a big "C," and twitched it a little. That's what my gallbladder does. Just as soon as I understood that, she was gone. I have an appointment with my real doctor next week. So hopefully she'll have a solution.

I thank the drive by doctor for the explanation, but I think it's mildly irresonsible to drop news like that and disappear.

Tests So Far

So far I've had an ultrasound and a HIDA Scan. An ultrasoung is pretty boring: the technician rubbed me with goo and in the end told me nothing about what she saw.

The HIDA Scan was way more intense. First I got a needle taped inside my arm - for easy access. I was injected with Clear Concoction A. Then I laid on a skinny bed, with a pillow for my head and another for my knees. I also put my arms in a loop that (when placed over my belly) kept my arms suspended. The bed was raised and pushed forward into a tube. It was like an MRI tube, but shorter. There were also square plates above, below, and next to me. The plate above me came down to about four inches from my face and there I was, snug as a bug with a possible gall bladder problem. I laid there for 40 minutes while Clear Concoction A went into my gall bladder. It was supposed to then drain, but it didn't. Miss Technician #2 said that was normal. She had me stand up and walk around. It timed out perfectly though, because Jesse had returned.

I went back into my cocoon and encouraged Jesse to take pictures. But once I was fully inside he said "I'm not taking pictures. This is scary." So you can blame him for missing out.

Clear Concoction A
finally drained and it was time for the "chaser," Clear Concoction B. That one had to be dripped in through my needle over 5 minutes, because it can cause nausea and cramping. It should be sold over the counter as puke in a syringe. Withing 30 seconds I thought I was going to hurl. And then the cramping started and I thought I was going to hurl and choke on it. And then it stopped, just as quickly as it came. Miss Technician B gave me a little more. And the ride started again. She flushed Clear Concoction B with some saline. I lay there for another 15 minutes. When it was all done, I asked her if I had stones. She said she couldn't say. Harrumph.

Now I'm waiting for the X Ray Technician. It's time to take a shot of Barium.

I'm going to be late for my hair appointment.

Test Time

Can you read that? It says "nuclear medicine," and that's what I'm here to get. There's a $100 co pay for that test, so it better be thorough. Jesse's here now, but he'll be leaving when the tests start. He's not one for medicine.
Courtesy of my Verizon PinkBerry

18 August 2008


Attached you should find the first picture of Peanut, my niece / nephew. My oldest little brother is going to be a dad, making me an aunt. The mother is hs girlfriend of the last year. I don't know her name, I don't know if she did this on purpose. I don't know if they're going to get married - although I'm pushing against that until we know more. I do know Peanut will be hatched. And I will be an aunt. And we're going to see where this takes us.
Also... this gets my parents off my back, which is a plus.

05 August 2008

Doc Says...

I have to stay for additional blood test, x ray, ultra sound.

Suspected gal bladder issues. Although I could have an ulcer. Imagine that.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Doctor's Visit

I'm at my doctor's office right now and I'm bordering on furious. I've never been a fan of coming to a place, paying money, and being asked to wait. Then going into another area to wait again, only to end up hearing bad news (oh you have an enlarged heart). But I have to go - the doctor only gives me a 3 month pressure pill supply.

So here I am. It's after 9. I made my appointment for 8:15. I was here at 8:13. At first miss receptionist didn't act like I had an appointment. Then she asked what I wanted to discuss with the doctor. The lady who scheduled my appointment had already asked that... But I repeated it anyway. The woman who took my weight and blood pressure also asked. My pressure was a pleasant 106 / 82 then. I'm sure it's much higher now. I've been pacing my cell listening to my doctor chat outside. I've been nicking some medical supplies in protest, but I do not feel better.

She's here!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry