Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Too much is too much

As mentioned in the previous post, some health issues since last August have led me to make a drastic decision, that to take my life and health back and out of the hands of the medical institution. But don't worry, I am not one of those lunatics who is going to refuse meds at all cost and start eating nuts and mushrooms all day!
My plan is simple: use common sense and research to formulate a plan and gradually get control of my life back, whether I am addressing my health or my home. This blog will have categories (once I figure out a way to create them) where posts will be divided into health, organization, family, DIY etc. For now, let's focus on the health.

Over the years I have not been without medical issues, but nothing was never so serious until I reached the age of 41 at which point everything fell apart, literally.

Health issues:

  • Repeated UTIs-At least twice if not more per year. I had them since I was a child and had kidney surgery as a result.
  • Fybrocystic breasts - diagnosed back in 2003 - a pretty horrendous condition which causes me to have regular mammograms and numerous biopsies thus far. One large cyst was removed back in 2004.
  • Ovarian/Uterine Cysts- which led me to have multiple biopsies over the years and two (2008 and 2012) cyst removals. Yesterday I went for an Ablation, which basically scars the inner lining of the uterus. I am looking forward to skipping the Feminine Aisle at my local CVS. Though if it failed to relieve symptoms, I am due for a hysterectomy.
  • Hypothyroiditis: Diagnosed in September 2011. General side effects are extreme fatigue, mood swings, weight gain, hair loss. I check on all of those plus some. I literally lost over 30 % of my hair over the summer and fall 2011 and gained about 27 lbs in one year.
  • Anemia: Coupled with the low thyroid and the extreme monthly blood loss, my Iron levels are so low, I should be taking shots in the back of my neck but instead opted for the pills.
  • Vitamin D Deficiency: At the lowest range possible, I should be taking 10,000 IU per day to compensate for my Zombie lifestyle.
  • Extreme levels of stress: work, finances, family, life in general. We all go through it but when you have all of the above to exacerbate the stress, guess what? Something has to give, in my case, it was, alas, my hair and my size 8!
  • Level 2 neck and spine subluxation: I am seeing a Chiropractor twice per week who sucks me out of $240 per month over progress I would consider to be highly subjective. I plan on doing exercises and kick him to the curb as well.
  • Insomnia: suffered from it my whole life, I can honestly say I do not know what a full 8 hours worth of sleep feels like.
So I never thought it would lead to that because like you, I thought I had time and that's when time kicked me in the face! Seriously, this is my daily regimen and I did not count the vitamins (which I fail to take on a regular basis). These are the result of what I would qualify as 8 months worth of my latest health collapse. How much of this is stress related (nurture) versus my genetic predisposition (nature), time will tell! But until we find out, I will gradually work my way back to health and that means reducing intake of Rx to what I absolutely cannot escape!

So here we go for a grand tour of my chemically enhanced self:

1. Omeprazole 40mg/day: prescribed as a result of having developed serious allergies and asthma this year. It's supposed to be an acid reflux to alleviate the symptoms of post nasal drip. Once the allergy season is over, this stupid pill is toast.

2. Prednisone 50mg/day: another one prescribed as a result of my developing Asthma. A steroid to which I responded rather poorly through the eruption of massive water filled hives, swelling of feet, hands and tongue. Not to mention the mood swings. They are gone today, no more that's it! I did my research and when Steroids are prescribed on a short term basis (in my case two weeks) one can stop right away as opposed to gradually and that is exactly what I am going to do! You won't see me on Steroids again!

3. Levothyroxine 0.75mg/day: Prescribed as a result of my being diagnosed with hypothyroiditis back in September 2011. I was experiencing extreme fatigue and hair loss (just about 30 % of my hair fell out and never regrew), in addition, I developed ongoing tightness of the throat and though hypothyroiditis does not give you a goiter, I could swear mine does (though I am sure the binging on Milk Duds helped along the way)! I have no choice but to take this Rx, if anything, that will be the only one to stay and I have to get my levels checked on a bi-monthly basis.

4. Misoprostol: A labor inducing Rx I had to take for the past two days pre-surgery. That one is temporary, another one biting the dust- ciao!

5. Oxycodone: AKA Percocet, the result of my having surgery yesterday. I was high for 12 hours and we'll leave it at that. I am flushing the 16 pills left down the drain TODAY!

6. Singulair: Another one resulting from my being diagnosed with allergy induced Asthma. I'll kick it out to the curb once the season is over. But what about next year? I have a plan!

7. Advair: The almighty snuff down your throat and lungs white powder that's supposed to relieve my Asthma. I have to take it twice per day until allergy season is over.

8. Albuterol: My original Asthma pump which did little to relieve symptoms on its own, but acts as a backup to Advair.

9. Ferro-Sequels: Iron pills I am told I need to take as the result of Anemia. I have to take two per day or 100 mg which is about 500% of the daily intake of iron (Yep, I am that deficient). As with the Thyroid meds, this is not a choice.

10. Generic Motrin PM: Because I also have insomnia.

11. Generic Extra Strength Tylenol: Because I also busted my ankle and my body aches all the time.

12. Generic All-Day Naproxen: to relieve ankle swelling and general aches and pains.

So there you have it, the walking pharmacy...Isn't that a shame? At almost 42 to be taking and prescribed that many chemicals and Lord knows whatever else is wrong with me, lurking at the corner!

So that was my introduction to the health problems. I'll do my very best to update this blog every Wednesday (or more) with the latest progress, articles, finds and changes. This is going to be a long journey!


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