Topic: Where Have you been Barb?
It has been weeks and weeks since I have posted, but I have excuses teacher, really I do! I had been complaining of shortness of breath for several weeks but my lungs were clear, my sats were in the 90's, so we just chalked it up to Tarceva side effects and took me off of it. I felt better but the shortness of breath still didn't go away. Just to reassure me (and him I think) my oncologist ordered a pulmonary CT, and bada bing, I was loaded with pulmonary emboli. As an old ICU nurse I knew that you can never trust the numbers, if the patient says they feel bad there is a reason. So, into the hospital and a heparin drip for me. after I was discharged I still couldn't quite get my old self back, so I was put on PRN oxygen. The fight with the insurance company was a doozy, since my sats never went down. I have a HCT of 27, pulmonary emboli and CC, but because my O2 sats didn't go below 90 I couldn't qualify for oxygen! I finally said to the medical director, gee, maybe I should start smoking and I can be just like those people you see with the portable oxygen units outside the grocery store smoking their cigarettes. That got a reaction and I got my oxygen!
THEN, the Friday before I was to leave on my cruise I started feeling TERRIBLE, puking, achey, everything. Went to see my oncologist and they hooked me up to IVs and anti nausea meds, and after a couple of hours and a nap I felt better. the weekend was uneventful, didn't feel great but didn't feel terrible. Monday came (2 days before I was supposed to leave) and the oncology nurse called and said "are you by any chance yellow?" As a matter of fact....... turns out my bili was 3.0. Long story short I was in for an ERCP and stent replacement the next day and left for my cruise the day after!
I had a wonderful time, didn't eat much but still had a great time. The most magical thing was swimming with the dolphins! If you EVER have the opportunity to do this DO IT! They say that dolphins have healing powers, hey, I'll try anything!
So, I am back, had a great holiday as I hope you all did as well!
Happy New Year everyone!