Saturday, September 22, 2012

Soo annoying!

So i'm pretty sure I have a fracture in my foot.

I mentioned a few posts back that I got x-rays of my foot, both in clinic and also in the ER.   At the end of the day, the ER doctor told me to simply wear sturdy shoes, and if things did not get better in a couple of weeks, come back. Well, things are not better.

I'm going to be honest-I thought this "wear sturdy shoes" suggestion was rather odd, considering the fact that A-I have a history of foot fractures, and B- my foot clearly has localized swelling at the top.

In this picture, with my feet side to side, you can see that there is clearly a sizable bump at the top of my foot.    That doesn't really seem like a "wear two pairs of sturdy shoes and call me in the morning" type of situation.  But then again..I'm not a doctor.  What I do know is that my last foot fracture didn't show up on an x-ray at all, and it was only after Dr. Fortin ordered a MRI that it showed my foot was fractured in two places.  I wish Dr. Fortin was around.  So now, I'm going to be forced to go to emergency to get my foot checked out when in the past, Dr. Fortin would have just ordered the MRI and made an appointment for me at the Fracture clinic straight away.  I can't get anyone to do this for me now.  I was thinking of getting in touch with my rheumatologist, but he and I don't yet have the same rapport that myself and Dr. Fortin had/have.

So it looks like I'll likely be making an early morning trip to emerg on my day off, Tuesday, in order to get this checked out by an actual fracture doctor.  What a pain! I'm going to waste a whole bunch of time to go to emergency to get told to go to fracture clinic which will waste more time! Gah!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Celebrities living full lives in spite of their health conditions

I got an interesting message in my email the other day from a website called Everydayhealth about celebrities with various health conditions who are living their lives to the fullest despite their struggles.  I don't normally share a lot of info on my site other than my own thoughts or things that I have found online on my own that I find interesting, but I did in fact find this post/email interesting.  Here is the link-check it out

http://www.everydayhealth.com/healthy-living-pictures/born-this-way.aspx#/slide-1

Monday, September 10, 2012

Transplant Battle Scars-6 Months Post-Op

I did a post back in April that showed my transplant scars 1 month post op. This post has gotten a lot of attention, so I thought I'd do another similar post, this time showing my scars 6 months post op! :)


Inner wrist
1 month post op

6 months post op

Neck
1 month post op

6 months post op


Side or arm/wrist
1 month post op
6 months post op

Hand

1 month post op


6 months post op
Transplant scar

1 month post op

6 months post op

That's it! There has been a lot of improvement in the IV scars.  As for the transplant scar, as it has healed further, it has gotten darker. It is smooth and only slightly raised, even though the photo might make it appear more raised than it is. Notice how the little staple scars around the actual transplant scar have healed and faded quite a bit.  I'm proud of my "battle scars". :-)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Advagraf Update

First of all, let me tell you how much I'm already appreciating the fact that I'm only needing to take my meds once a day (in the morning). My evening meds consist of omeprazole (which, from what I can see, my nephrologist is trying to ween me off of anyways) and my vitamin D pill (just a small pill which barely resembles taking actual meds anyways). Don't get me wrong-I'm perfectly happy (and willing) to return to taking tacrolimus twice daily if needed, but I won't lie-this once a day business IS the business!

Speaking of business, let's get down to it.  I started taking advagraf a week ago. Since then, I've been asked to do my bloodwork every week instead of every other week...just to make sure things are working well. I did my first blood test since taking advagraf this past Thursday.

Yesterday, I got a message from my transplant coordinator. She let me know that my advagraf/tacrolimus level was a little bit low. I'm currently taking 9mg of advagraf once a day, so I've been asked to "up" it to 10mg daily. The target advagraf level is between 5-8, and my level is currently 3.6, so it's a little low.  Hopefully the 1mg increase will increase my advagraf level to the ideal range.

In other news, I worked a full 20 hours this week, aka, back to my regular number of hours! It's still taking some getting used to.  I'm not experiencing any out of the ordinary fatigue or anything like that, but I'm still getting into the swing of things where my job is concerned. There have been a lot of changes-many of which actually make my job a bit easier...but I have to get used to/get out of the mindset of doing things "the old way".  This will come with time.  I am very much looking forward to now being able to seek out an HR job.  I've worked hard to be able to finish school and get the appropriate qualifications I need, now it's just about finding and securing that job! :)

Anyhow, I'm going to be doing follow up blood work on Tuesday, so hopefully those go well! :)

Monday, September 3, 2012

Goodbye, Tacrolimus, hello Advagraf

I had an appointment at the transplant clinic on Friday.  It went well.

My blood work is excellent. My creatinine has consistently been in the 67-72 range, which my doc says is great. My other blood work is excellent as well. For that reason, I have graduated from twice a day tacrolimus to once a day Advagraf! :)

It's great because I only have to remember to take this essential medication once a day (in the morning) as opposed to twice a day.  Some of my other medications have been removed as well, including calcitriol, valcyte, and nystatin.  I also will reduce my usage of omeprazole to nightly instead of both in the morning and at night.  I will take note of any reflux symptoms and resume morning usage if necessary.

With the changes to my medications, mostly the addition of the Advagraf, I will be doing blood work weekly instead of twice a week for the next 3-4 weeks or so. If all is well, I will be doing blood work once a month. That is a great relief! I don't mind doing blood work, but the less I have to do it is obviously an indication that everything is stabilizing and "normal".

Early last week, my left foot started to hurt me. It hurts whenever I take a step and is slightly swollen on top. So, knowing that I was going to have an appointment on Friday, I decided to ask for an x-ray, so I got the x-ray done.  Later on late in the afternoon, I got a phone call telling me that it "looked" like there might be a small fracture in my foot, and that I should go to emerg for more information.  Dang! Why does it have to be a Friday evening before long weekend??

So I already had plans to hang out with one of my buddies on Friday evening/night, so I decided to go to emerg early Saturday morning.

So Pops and I left on Saturday morning and headed off to emerg.  The wait wasn't that long, however the doctors didn't show up until 10am so that kind of prolonged our stay. Luckily still, I was attended to rather quickly.

The ER doc ordered a few more x-rays which I did.  After that, he looked at them and said that one of the 6 x-rays that were done showed a very tiny fracture in my foot.  He recommended sturdy shoes and avoiding hills, and if that didn't improve my pain, come back in 1-2 weeks.

So, we'll see how that goes...!


 
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