Monday, February 21, 2011

Very Interesting...

Today was colonoscopy day.  I was up much of the night due to the "prep."  Ugh--that was horrific.  Anyway, Tim took the day off to take me for the procedure, which was bright and early at 8:00.  My mom kept Rowan.  I had to fill out paperwork and show my insurance card (for like the 60th time--do they throw away the copy they make each time?) and then wait for them to come and get me.

As a nurse, it's always weird to be on this end of things.  Even though I pretty much know exactly what's going on, I still find comfort from the nurse explaining it all to me.  I had to strip down and put on a hospital gown.  Luckily, there was a warm blanket.  The nurse who got me ready was great--her name was Ann.  She told me that she ran two miles yesterday for the first time in years.  When I told her I went 17 she gasped.  Dr. Spier had wanted me to run prior to the procedure...but 17?!  I decided not to explain to her that 17 is really not....that.....far.  She took my history and told me how interesting my case is.  And how much they all wished they could figure out what is wrong with me so that I could carry on running without pain.  At that point, Dr. Spier came in.  "Did you run yesterday?"  "Yes."  Ann interjected:  "17 miles!!"  He didn't seem fazed by it.  I was able to explain to him that my pain is now worse, and also on both sides.

I got rolled into the procedure room where THOSE nurses went on about how they couldn't believe I ran 17 miles yesterday.  I told them my husband ran those 17 miles and then rode his bike an hour.  That made me look less crazy.  I had great nurses.  And that's saying a lot, because I'm a tough critic.  They also told me how interesting my case is.  Dr. Spier came in and talked to me a bit...then he started asking me about jogging strollers.  He wanted to know which one we use, because he and his wife have a baby about Rowan's age and they're looking for one.  I told him about ours, and that it's purple.  Then I remember asking the nurse, "Did you just give me something?" as I was having trouble communicating about the stroller.  "100 of Fentanyl."  "Aw, man, I wanted to know about the stroller," Dr. Spier said.  That's the last thing I remember.  I do remember hearing him say "cut" once or twice during the procedure, and thinking that I should keep my eyes open so I could watch the screen.

Allegedly--since I have no memory of it--I was then taken back to the prep room.  Tim was there, though I don't remember seeing him.  I guess I was talking about hating Wal-Mart and also complaining that they didn't do the procedure.  And I was confused as to why the nurse was wearing a Starbucks apron and visor.  Tim actually videoed me, so I've seen myself in this stupor.  Dr. Spier then came in (again, allegedly) and explained the results.  Tim tells me that he showed us pictures, and that there is some redness/inflammation in some parts of the colon, mainly on the left side.  Not much on the right.  He biopsied throughout the colon, and did notice that when he did so there was significantly more bleeding than what he would have expected.  So what does this mean?  Well--he didn't see anything glaringly wrong, though there is some evidence that something has been going on in there, at least on the left.  The heavier-than-normal bleeding may indicate that those areas have developed collateral blood flow in order to help them heal.  So, we're awaiting biopsy results.  Those results will let us know if there has been ischemia to the colon.  Well, then what?   Well, I could try not running to see if it will heal.  But that doesn't make sense to me because, when it developed,  I hadn't run in over 3 months.  The other option is to remove the damaged parts of the colon, but we can't do that unless we're SURE that's causing my pain.  And how could we be sure?  Well, we'd have to do some sort of test that would show the blood flow to my colon while I'm running...some kind of angiogram.  He, and interventional radiologists he's spoken to, however, don't know how to do that.

I went home and slept.  And later I went to see a local chiropractor.  He did a very thorough examination, determined that my spine is tender where it "lines up" with my diaphragm, but ultimately said "I have no idea, but it's very interesting."  He did an adjustment and gave me some information on a laser treatment from which I might benefit.  But he's not sure--it's all just guessing.

I'm not sure where to go from here.  Alas, though, it is very interesting.

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