Umm, I don't have enough underwear for that...
Wednesday, September 03, 2014
As Ricky Ricardo says, "lemme splain". But first I wanted to share why I needed to give my body a fighting chance. See, apparently my home has it in for me, really.
My pain has continually crept up because of a few things that were out of my control:
Our very specialized (and pricy) 2-year-old air conditioning system flopped and basically died. It's been really warm this summer in CA. AC is critical for my daily life.
My husband left a puddle of water on the floor and forgot to clean it up. Of course I slipped in it later, jabbed my fingers into cupboards, cracking open one of my life-saver sized ulcers. Gross, disgusting. Blood everywhere. Ruined some clothing and a nice towel. Classic me.
A couple of days later I stepped on a straight pin that was sticking out of the bathroom rug. Accidentally fell off my husband's new shirt when he was trying it on. Whoops.
Waddled into the kitchen to get some water the next day and felt a searing burn under my left foot. I was stuck to a dried puddle of lime juice from an accidental spill by my beloved the night prior. Another accident left behind unintentionally.
Icing on the cake: that same morning I went to take a shower and suddenly both of my feet felt like they were sizzling once I stepped into the shower stall. Hubbie forgot to tell me that he sprayed bleach since he was going to scrub it later.
Was my husband trying to kill me? No, not at all I'm sure. I was a clumsy goofball before my health tanked, believe me.
Useless insider info: I was never to be trusted around sharp knives or garbage disposals. Seriously!
Thank goodness there weren't any super stealthy ninja weapons in our house, right? I'd have been impaled on a pair of nunchucks for sure...
But those teeny things kind of pushed my pain into overdrive. And the lack of air conditioning in our living room added insult to injury (err...injuries?). The finger that I cracked open and my feet are still absolutely throbbing and angry days later. Silly.
My body was begging for some pain relief treatment in-hospital, but I had an opportunity to try something new - and had to sacrifice potential pain relief to do it.
Have been talking to my doctors both at the Mayo Clinic and here at Stanford about doing a trial of IVIG therapy. I was told that I am the first EM patient to undergo this type of therapy from a Stanford. Yay me. Where's my sash and trophy???
I've read about people with certain autoimmune diseases achieving amazing results after IVIG. Since I don't respond well to any of the treatments available for EM, I thought this might be something fantastic to try. They all agreed.
To keep it short, IVIG is a treatment via IV that contains antibodies collected from the plasma of healthy donors. IVIG is not used to treat pain, but can help the body to heal and prevent future internal immune system warfare.
Maybe it will slow down my body from continually triggering its own internal breakdown for a few weeks. A 'reset button' for my immune system. I'm in!
Wouldn't it be supercalifragilisticexpialidoc
ious If it worked?!? If I could FINALLY make better progress in healing from my biopsies from the Mayo Clinic in July? Paper cuts might heal faster, bruising might not be so severe. And then there are those threatening puddles of lime juice...
I'm slower than molasses when it comes to healing. Shoot, I'm slower than molasses in the Midwest - in the middle of winter - poured onto an icy cold street, actually. Wouldn't it be fun to change that around for a bit?
Oooh, and get back to a more mobile life? To dust off my workout DVDs and be able to confidently hold a pair of 5lb weights to feel the burn baby! Nab back some sexy muscle definition? Nice. Let's go doc, I've got plans here!
I have to remind myself that I did not come into the hospital because I was in a lot of pain. Gonna have to suck it up since the docs don't want to mix pain management drugs with IVIG.
Perhaps this treatment will communicate to all of my teeny tiny immune system tidbits that they should hold hands and be friends instead of enemies. You know, sing a round of Kumbay-ya around the burning campfire of Ethel that burns so bright, right?
Oh yes, the underwear wail [Ha!]. Initially this was supposed to be a single round of IVIG therapy, and should have taken three days max. Since I haven't had any of the scary creepy side effects thus far [anaphylactic shock being just one of those. Holy Crimini!], they decided to try 2 rounds of IVIG back to back. That translates to a 5+ day stay. I've got an underwear crisis people!
Time to recognize my silver linings and wrap things up.
I'm in a private room again due to the temperature demands of my EM/Ethel. My room is nice and dark. The AC works. I've got ice packs all around me and the staff is great.
Bonus: I can see the Life Flight helipad just outside my window. Really, it's so freaking close! Just a tad too loud for my headache since these life saving heroes have been busy. Entertaining though, so I'll just get past the noise. What an amazing sight!
I wonder if Amazon prime will deliver cotton undies to the hospital? Why is this funny?
' Nuff Said.