Stomach Flu? Or Just A Bad Pouch Day?

It’s been one of those days that I don’t really feel like documenting because I’ve felt so miserable. Do people want to know that I threw up 5 times today? Sometimes I’m not sure. I know I’d much rather talk about weight loss and good days.

Since I’ve been back at work, I’ve been around a lot of sick people. It’s frustrating when people come into work sick and germy because I usually catch anything that’s going around. Especially since my immune system has been down since surgery. I take my vitamins and supplements daily, and I’m vigilant about washing my hands. But today I’ve been sick enough to wonder if I picked up what the boys at work have.

I couldn’t keep anything sizeable down until about 3pm today. Had egg whites and melted cheese for breakfast – lost it. Had a few bites of pudding – lost it. Had a little bit of tomato sauce with melted cheese – lost it. I tried to make up for a lack of nutrients with a protein shake, lost it (twice). I couldn’t even keep down water very easily. I made it through half of church, but I was feeling dizzy and nauseous, and decided it was time to go home.

I kept down a few bites of light yogurt, then took a long nap. When I was up, I had a little bit of shredded meat, enchilada sauce and cheese, and didn’t lose it. I sipped water through the evening, and had a little bit of vegetable broth. I kept my emesis basin handy for all the regurgitation and times I though I’d lose my dinner…but it wasn’t fun at all.

If it’s the flu, I hope it’s just a passing 24-hour thing. If it’s an unhappy pouch, I’ll be discussing that with Dr Smith at my post-op surgical appointment tomorrow morning. I’m going to talk about the ongoing nausea and fatigue that I deal with every day. Some people have suggested me upping the amount of protein I consume, and I also switched the type of B-12 I take from sublingual drops to sublingual lozenges. I’ll report my weight in my post tomorrow.

Food diary:

  • Egg whites and cheese (lost it)
  • A few bites of pudding (lost it)
  • Tomato sauce and cheese (lost it)
  • Protein shake (lost it)
  • 1 oz light yogurt
  • 2 oz shredded pork, enchilada sauce, and melted cheese
  • 2 oz vegetable broth
  • 5 grapes

Organ Recital

This is an actual picture of my chest x-ray today

At age 7, I started seeing a dermatologist for eczema

At age 11, I was diagnosed with asthma

At age 16, I had my first ulcer

At age 19, I was hospitalized for a kidney infection

At age 20, I gave birth to my daughter. During that hospital stay, I was exposed to e. Coli in the hospital, went septic, and into ARDS. I was on a ventilator in the ICU for 3 weeks. At the end of the hospital stay, I developed a blood clot in my arm (from fingertip to armpit) and went on anticoagulation therapy for 6 months

At age 21, I had my first migraine and started immunotherapy for allergies

At age 23, I was diagnosed with hypersomnia and sleep apnea

At age 28, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome

And I’ve basically been overweight since birth, despite numerous dedicated attempts to reduce my weight

Today I went to my new pulomonary/sleep specialist. I have been having terrible sleep luck since October. Usually, I miraculously get by with only 4-6 hours of sleep per night, typically interrupted. I can only recall a handful of times I’ve gotten more than 7 hours of continuous sleep in 4 months. I’ve been snoring like a lumberjack, much to my poor husband’s dismay. I’ve also been feeling sick for a week, and was told on Sunday at Urgent Care that it was “just a cold.” I’ve been huffing my inhaler every few hours for a couple of days, and it was a stroke of luck to get into a pulmonologist so quickly.

I did my H&P wth the PA, did a pulmonary function test, had two chest x-rays, and met with “Dr Eye” (his last name starts with “I” but I can’t remember his actual name). He said that I’ve got a pretty advanced case of bronchitis, and he was surprised that I was still working with it this bad. He reviewed my old sleep records, suggested that I resume CPAP therapy, and scheduled me for another overnight sleep study. He also strongly urged me to look into some surgical options to improve my overall health...specifically bariatric surgery. He said my sleep would not improve markedly unless I lost at least 80 pounds. He said that since I’ve had such limited success with conservative weight loss in the past, and my BMI is over 40, I’m a good candidate for bariatic surgery, and the sooner the better.

Ever since I actually researched what a gastric bypass surgery was, I was horrified. And I also know of two people who had family members pass away on the operating table during the procedure. I have two people that I’m close to have the lap band surgery in the past 2 years, and both have had great results. But do I really want to pursue surgical options? My insurance will cover the great portion of it…in fact my portion would be cheaper than 6 months on Weight Watchers. Dr. Eye said he has a bariatric surgeon that he recommends, and would give me his contact information at my next visit.

Oftentimes, I’ve wondered if my body was the major trial I was given in this life.

Sick again today

I’ve been coming down with a few symptoms of a cold since Thursday, but today it’s hit me full force. I’ve been coughing, gasping for breath, and my head feels like it’s going to explode. I’m going to head off to urgent care when it opens at 10:00 am.

What is most worrisome is that Taylor told me this morning that I was snoring like a emphysematic chainsaw. He’s mostly deaf in one ear, had his other ear pressed into the pillow, and still kept waking up from my snoring and gasping.I would breath shallow for a while then stop, then dramatically gasp for air. I’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea in the past, but was more worried about the daytime hypersomnia. I have been waking up with my hands and feet tingling. My ignored C-PAP machine is en route from Michigan currently, but the mask doesn’t fit me and causes boils on my nose. It’s time to see a sleep specialist STAT. And get a Provigil prescription. When I’m at urgent care today, I’m going to ask for a note or referral to get into a sleep specialist this week.

Pre-Holiday Update

My body still feels out of whack. I felt like I bounced back a little on Monday in time to fly out to California. Grant and Hollie had a holiday party just before I left, and I was so proud of myself. I had half of a turkey-cheese sandwich, a few olives, three bites of jello, and some deviled eggs. And small cups of soy Nog and pomegranate 7-Up. The food didn’t even take up half of the plate. I didn’t touch the chips n’ dip, creamy soup, cheeseball, pumpkin yule log, sugar cookies, candy, pie, or other desserts.

In California on Tuesday, I went out to lunch with my old coworkers at Montclair and Chino hospitals. We ate at Rockin’ Baja Cantina, and it was the most food I’d eaten since I started getting sick. I had some chips with guacamole and salsa, surf-n-turf tacos, and all of us split a fried ice cream dessert. The surf-n-turf tacos had lean carne asada and juicy shrimp…delicious! It felt good to eat enough to actually feel full, but not totally overstuffed.

In the evening, we had the Bullock/Bluhm Christmas party. There was pizza and fried chicken for dinner, but I didn’t really like how either tasted. The frosted sugar cookies, on the other hand, called my name all evening. As the party progressed, I started getting some intense lower back pain. I’d had unusual back pain all day, but it hit me like a brick wall at the party. I started developing a little bit of a fever and general malaise, but it was so close to 9:00 pm that my favorite Urgent Care in Chino Hills was closed. It felt a lot like the pain associated with a kidney infection, and I didn’t want to mess around with an infection like that (espeically not knowing if I had C. Diff conclusively yet) I checked my ER copay ($25) and decided to go back over to Montclair Hospital’s ER. They’ve got a 2-hour ER guarantee, and I was in and out in 70 minutes. I didn’t have any infection in my urine, but was told that it was likely the after effects of all the GI symptoms over the last week. He said to rest, take it easy, and tank up on fluids.

I started today with 2 hours of last-minute shopping, but spent the rest of the day with family. I went to Trader Joes, and had the most successful shopping trip there ever! I didn’t touch all my TJ’s favorites (only bad because I can’t control my portions once I open the packages up):

Sweet Salty and Nutty Trek Mix
Chocolate-covered Edamame

Sweet, Savory, and Tart Trex Mix

Ritter Sport Corn Flake Bar
Pirate Booty

And for Christmas Eve dinner, Taylor had a micro-date to In-N-Out.

Maybe Olestra isn’t to blame…

I just got back from InstaCare urgent care, where I spent over 6 hours today. I explained my signs and symptoms, and was told that there is no way Olestra could have caused what I have. The most likely diagnosis is C. Difficile, but they’ll have to send out a culture to know for certain. They infused three liters of lactated ringers, and each liter took over an hour to infuse.

The upside is the weight I’ve lost this week, as well as the orders to have lots of fluids and yummy popcicles. Hopefully once I gain my energy back, I’ll be ready to hit the exercise and weight loss hard.

Dehydration…IV or drink like a maniac?

My GI-fiasco of 2008 still continues to rage on. I’ve been living in the bathroom anywhere from 10-30 times a day since Thursday. I’ve been trying to drink as much water as possible, but my mouth and eyes are dry, my skin doesn’t look right, my muscles are cramping, and I feel so fatigued…all signs point to dehydration.

Within the last 24 hours, I’ve had 3-28 oz bottles of water, 12 ounces of apple juice, and probably 5 glasses of water. There’s no Gatorade here, but Hollie thinks she might have some Pedialyte. With the severity of my illness, I’ve decided to head to Urgent Care at 9 am when they open and beg for an IV, and maybe some kind of medicine to stop the intestinal earthquakes.