I ended my last blog with "don't mention trip or vacation, to me", and here I am, on the road again! And no, I'm not alone....this honey of mine, that has MM, is along (and he's even doing some of the driving!)
My cousin, Howard, who died from Colon Cancer almost 4 years ago, used to say "I ain't sick, I just got cancer". (Now, Howard was well-educated, but he loved using his southern slang to make more of an impression.) For the past few months, my honey HAS been sick (and he also has cancer). He's been nauseous, couldn't eat (and no, it WAS NOT my cooking!), and has been like someone with the flu - except no cough, cold, temp, etc.
Thankfully, I keep detailed notes, calendars, medical logs, notebooks, etc., ad nauseum! (guess it comes from my many years as a consultant). First, we went to see the wonderful Dr. H (Bob's oncologist), and learned that it probably wasn't the cancer. (Whew!!)
On Monday, we went to see his PCP, who really looked completely disinterested at the whole situation. Bob explained what was going on (with a "few" interruptions from me.) Having referred to my trusty records, I asked if he would put my honey back on his "old" (took it for 7 years without incident) Blood Pressure medication. Humana had taken his medication off their Formulary (would not pay for it), so in May a new BP med had been prescribed. I had done some research (I could almost hear the doctor groan), and the "possible" side-effects were exactly what Bob was experiencing. (I'm still considering renting him out as a "side-effects tester".) He agreed, but obviously thought I was wrong, because he suggested it was Bob's gallbladder, and that he should see a surgeon. He also had Bob leave a urine specimen. (Note: Other than getting him back on the BP med, and the urine sample....it was a waste of time, and $$)
So, on Tuesday, off we go to see the surgeon. In March, Bob had a colonoscopy, endoscopy and Hidascan (gallbladder). This surgeon had visited him in the hospital when he was experiencing, as we later learned, side-effects (there's that word, again) of Celebrex. Bob's gallbladder wasn't "emptying properly", but he didn't think that was the problem, then (or now). His exact words "I can remove it, but it probably won't fix the problem .....you'll probably still be nauseated." (Oh good, that's just what we wanted to hear.) He suggested that Bob see a Gastrointerologist, because there are "many things" (his words) that can cause nausea. When I asked "Such as?", he said "The Gastroenterologist will tell you." (Hidden answer....."I don't know") (Note: Another waste of time....and $$)
The Gastrointerologist doesn't have an appointment available until the end of August. He's sick! He's losing weight! He's nauseous! He can't eat! Are you kidding me?
My honey was feeling terrible, he was weak, and his eyes were even beginning to have that "vacant" look. He would get up in the morning, and when he got to the sofa he would lie down and go back to sleep. I was researching everywhere, and corresponding with another caregiver (in Iowa) who had some wonderful ideas, info, and suggestions. What would I do without this MM community? I was frustrated, concerned, and frightened. This was beginning to remind me of those days, before we got a MM diagnosis; when he was so sick, and I didn't know what was wrong.
I tried to get an appointment with a Nephrologist, but learned that he needs a referral (understandable), and doesn't meet their criteria. (And, that's a good thing.....probably isn't his kidneys causing the problem). His GFR isn't what it should be but that, alone, doesn't mean kidney issues.
So, on Tuesday night, my honey started back on his "old" BP medication. On Wednesday, there was no instant miracle. On Thursday, he began to be a little better. Friday, he was "more" better, and Saturday morning (today), he woke up, raring to go!!
And, this time, I said "Let's go get the RV!" It was almost as if I'd give him a shot of adrenaline. I could see it on his face....the "she knows I feel good" smile. And, before I knew, it he was taking his shower, packing his clothes and getting ready to go. Hence the reason we're on the road!
He's no longer as nauseous,his appetite is back, he's beginning to feel good. Will this happen, again? Most certainly. Somewhere down the line, something new will be prescribed, and we'll go through another episode. It's frustrating, irritating, frightening, all of these adjective, and more, but as long as it isn't the cancer, we can deal with it, if we know what "it" is.
Strange, how something as simple as Blood Pressure medication can potentially be an issue. We see the advertisements on television, everyday, of the possible side-effects of various drugs. Bob's cancer (and his sensitive digestive system) has taught me to be very cautious, and aware, of the potential danger of every drug. At the time his Blood Pressure medication was changed I voiced my opposition, and concern, and deaf ears were turned - so I'm not saying "I told you so!" (Oh heck, yes I am!!)
My honey is feeling better - he's eating, he's not nauseous....and that's what's important. Thankfully, it isn't always the cancer......maybe it's just the side-effects, of something else.....