Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I have my future back!


I am so happy to report some awesome news from the Mayo!


Before we left, Brian and I agreed that what we hoped would happen is that the doctors would trigger a reaction, put a scope down in my airway and take a look on what the heck was going on.

After an extensive interview and a review of my charts and records, the first thing my doctor said was, “What I want to do is look in your throat while you are having a reaction and see what is actually happening.”


So, I went to the drug store and bought some Right Guard deodorant, because if you remember that was what the ICU nurse sprayed and go me going again. The test was to be done the next day. But, in the meantime there was a full schedule of tests to undergo.


One of the test was an asthma test, called a Methacholine Challenge. They have you breath in a chemical and if you are an asthmatic, you will have trouble breathing. Well, sure enough, I breathed it in and boy did my lungs clamp right down. My symptoms were similar to a few of my reactions that brought me running to ERs, but without the closing throat. As I sat in the exam room waiting for the second phase of the test, I suddenly started having the throat swelling sensation.


The nurses dashed down the hall and grabbed the two doctors who were going to do my test the next day and we went together to a different exam room. There, I had meeting with a barbaric instrument of torture…the scope that would be shoved down my nose and into my throat, with only a bit of numbing medicine spray to minimize the suffering.


Let me try to describe the experience, skip the next two paragraphs if you are squeamish…

The camera and bright light are in a tube that goes down your nostril, into the back of you throat, and then they keep going farther right down to your vocal cords. The doc even said at one point, just a bit farther and this is a bronchoscopy (ok, that means they are almost down my main breathing pipes leading to my lungs). Now, once they were way down there, they decided to take a leisurely time and get a good look. He kept saying, “Let me know if this is too much.” Well, it was too much, but I just sat there not letting them know. But I was not going to let it show, as I wanted them to get as much information as possible.


Well, after their Magic School Bus trip through the depths of my throat, they decide that the depths of my face would a fun visit. They saw my old sinus surgery sites, and then headed high and higher into my head. “You are going to feel some pressure on your eyes now and see some light.” OH MY GOSH. I am living in medieval times?


OK, you medical phobes can start reading again...


So with that, I got the best news ever…there was no swelling or spasm of my larynx, translation, this is not Anaphylaxis, this is not an allergic reaction after all!!!!!


The bottom line, I have asthma. The Methacholine Challenge showed a 24% decrease in my lung function (20% or greater is definitive for asthma). So that explained the shortness of breath that I have experienced.


Next I went off the Speech Pathologist who informed me the I likely have vocal cord dysfunction, something that is not uncommon in asthmatics and may actually be reversed or minimized with some special breathing techniques.


So, no more epi, no more steroids, no more antihistamines, just a few asthma meds and I am good to go!


Thank you all for you good thoughts and prayers. I believe we have a clear answer and I could not be more thankful!


Now, we are off to have a vacation in Minneapolis (if the Marriot will free us from our reservation). Well, either way we will definitely be there on Saturday, my birthday. Tarah from Eyeglasses and Endzones and I are going to have a fun time having a cuppa and maybe some shopping! I think I want a Tiffany bracelet to take the place of my stupid ol’ Medic Alert bracelet that I took off the moment I heard my good news.


I feel like I have a new lease on life and that couldn’t feel any better!

47 comments:

~*Michelle*~ said...

Praise God for answers and a bright new future (no pun intended on the bright!)

You deserve a fabulous shopping trip too! :)

Peace~

*~Michelle~*

mama's smitten said...

That was is wonderful news!!!!! Well except how uncomfortable the testing was! I am so happy for you! A well deserved blessing!

Kelley said...

Praise God! What incredible news! I'm so excited for you! I can only imagine how you are feeling!

YEAH YEAH YEAH!

Rachel said...

Whoo hoo! I am SO glad to hear the great news!

Elaine let me know when you would be there and I started praying. And it couldn't have been any better news! Well, I mean, it would have been nice if they could have told all that stuff without using those torture devices... but now you have a terrific definitive answer!

Really excited for you and wish I could join you guys in celebrating!

Beth E. said...

Hallelujah! That is such good news! I'm so glad you now have the answers.

I'm confused, though. If the Right Guard and other things trigger an asthma attack, isn't that an allergy issue??? The reason I'm asking this is because I have allergy (or illness)induced asthma.

Have fun with Tarah (I'm a lil' jealous, but I'll get over it). LOL

Blessings,
Beth

Oh, and I totally agree with you....you definitely need a bracelet from Tiffany's! ;-)

Pam D said...

YAY! I knew Mayo would find the answers.. I just knew it! And now that you KNOW for sure what the problem is, it should be so much easier to control. Hurray! Now... time to get that hubby of your's hearing issues taken care of... !
Hugs and blessings.. and BIG praises!

Sneaky Momma said...

Wow! I am so incredibly happy for you!!! What a difference a day makes..... :)

Lori said...

Great news! I'm so happy that you got the answers you needed. Hope you have a great vacation.

blueviolet said...

This is the best news I've heard all day! Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!

Foursons said...

Good news to get a diagnosis! Asthma is not fun but it's certainly treatable. Yea! Enjoy your vacation and that new Tiffany jewelry.

Aspiemom said...

Praise the Lord for answers and for the good news!

I have had a bronchoscopy twice and it is no fun. I've also had them go into my sinuses quite often to poke around and explore - isn't that the most awful sensation?

Have fun on your vacation now!

(That Mayo Clinic looks beautiful in that pic!)

Jen said...

Wow, that is so awesome!!!!

Tricia Nugen said...

O honey! I am so very relieved! Thank goodness. I've been praying for you!

Beth in NC said...

What wonderful news! Girl, I would have freaked with that probe going through me. SCREAM! But praise God for good news. Now, to get the asthma dealt with.

Good for you girl!
Beth

He & Me + 3 said...

Julie,

That is such great news. I am so happy for you. Enjoy your time with Tarah...she is so fun!

Following HIM said...

PRAISING HIM for the final word! This is amazing news. Granted no one wants Asthma, but no Miss Ana is wonderful!!! YAHOO :)
~Elyse

-stephanie- said...

I would say a trip up your nose and down your throat and an answer to your problems is great news. Have a wonderful rest of your vacation. You're so close yet so far from me. About a 5 hour drive.

Melissa Stover said...

that's great news! i couldn't read all that but i'm so glad you're prayers were answered.

Gracie said...

God is amazing! He is able to do immeasurably more than we can think or even ask. Sooooo happy to hear your great news =)

Casey said...

That is wonderful news! I'm so happy for you!
What a relief! Have a fantastic time on the rest of your trip. You deserve every minute!

WWWebb said...

You have to pass the good luck on to someone else, now. :-) God is good.

Reality Rounds said...

Good for you! I had a similar experience with an ENT when I had chronic hoarseness in my voice and what I thought was unilateral tonsil swelling. (can you say lymphoma). Turns out I have run of the mill reflux, and had a new lease on life. Isn't the Mayo clinic great! I was a nurse intern there in my younger days.
Cheers.

Becca~TimeWellSpent said...

PTL! I'm so happy for you and that you have some answers and a new plan of attack!
What you had to go through to get those answers does sound like torture though. Goodness girl!

renee said...

GREAT NEWS!!!!!!!!!!! that is sooooo awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God is good!

Teresa @ Grammy Girlfriend said...

So glad to hear your good news....

Mighty M said...

What wonderful news - I only wish there had been a more pleasant way to get a diagnosis!! Have fun on your trip!! ;-)

Carolyn said...

I'm so pleased for you girl! Happy early birthday. X.

christy rose said...

Julie, That is wonderful. I am so glad you got some answers.
Have fun with Tarah and a Tiffany bracelet sounds like a great replacement for the hospital one.
I am so pleased to hear your good news.
Christy

Annie said...

so happy to hear the wonderful news!!

Eyeglasses & Endzones said...

Yeah Yeah Yeah! I am soo excited for you! I can't wait to hook up! Should be pretty fun~! ;)

Shana said...

Hey! Thanks for letting me know about his comments. He disabled the word verification & its fine now. I hate to say I'm glad you have asthma...but, I'm SO glad it was asthma, lol!

Helene said...

That is the best news!!!! The actual procedure sounds like it was horrible to endure but a lot of good came from it! I always say I refuse to go to the eye dr because the thought of something going into my eye just freaks me out. You are one brave girl!!

Enjoy your shopping and your vacation!!!!

Orah said...

AWE FRIGGIN' SOME!!! And have fun in minneapolis.

Morgan said...

That's amazing news Julie! I'm so glad for you that you finally got some answers and that it's not anaphylaxis! I hope you have a great trip!

Valerie said...

Praise, God! What wonderful news you received...it almost seems too good to be true!!!

I so wish my sister would have gotten news like this regarding, Eli, but alas, she did not and surgery is scheduled for Sept. 4th.

I can't imagine being a nurse and "knowing" so much and then having to watch your child endure your worst nightmare!

So happy that YOU got the answers you were needing; perhaps you got more than what you were looking for!

Blessings,
Valerie

April said...

Praise be, Julie! Definitely sounds like you received some very encouraging news. God has been watching closely over you and He has heard our prayers! Enjoy your vacay...you've earned it!

mrosev14 said...

I am so glad to hear you have an answer to your terrible reaction to stuff! That is wonderful. Hopefully they can get you on a good regimine of drugs to prevent any more reactions. Take care, have fun in MN!

Grami's girls said...

That is answered prayer! Enjoy your weekend!

Melissa said...

Oh my goodness! that is wonderful news Julie! Happy for you...Have a fun week-end visiting with Tarah!

Rebekah said...

what an amazing blessing to be off the steroids etc... Back to your true passion of caring for patients instead of being one.....

Anonymous said...

Julie - that is so wonderful. We were sending you good thoughts from the Carribbean. Apparentely it was hotter in MN than we were down there. Now its just plain old asthma - boy, have we had fun with that, but so prevalent. So sorry we missed you guys...Were you here for the big Sat night storm? Kathleen

Miranda said...

Glad to hear you received good news! Or any news for that matter. I don't blame you, I would have taken the bracelet off asap too!

Belle (from Life of a...) said...

Oh I am SO HAPPY. I'm doing a HAPPY DANCE!!!

Five Moms & A Blog said...

Hey Julie! I just saw the picture of you and Tarah. SO COOL!!! So glad y'all got too meet although I'm totally jealous!

As for the scope thingy? I had to have that done. When I was pregnant with Cameron I threw up so much that I scarred my vocal cords. They put the tube with scope and light up through my nostril, down the back of my throat and all the way to my vocal chords. Then they had me make sounds and sing and such as we watched my vocal chords on a camera. It didn't hurt me AT ALL and wasn't really even that uncomfortable. I mean it felt awkward, but not bad. I bet yours was worse cuz yours were swelling and inflamed when they did it.

The going UP part sounds awful though. Yikes!

Take care and glad they got some good results for ya!

Erica

Tim said...

Oh Julie that is such great news! You have been in our prayers!

Have a great time on your vacation, you deserve it!

Love and Prayers,

Tim

Rebekah said...

Julie, I am so thankful for your amazing blessing of finding answers to your reaction problem. I dont want to ever open my computer again to read of the horror of you barely making it into the ER just to hang out in the ICU. Very funny you just made the connection between Brookie and I....I thought you knew all along. Thank you for taking the time to follow our blogs. It really is fun to know someone reads my little thoughts.Im off to the mountains for the last hoorah of summer. I better get packing. Have a great weekend

Rebekah said...

By the way the other little chick of mine is the blog "The Peace of cake" or "God is Good" Check out her blog. Of course I love to follow it because Im her merm.