15 April 2009

Nothing to Worry About

Just a quick note to let you know the mammogram confirmed my doctor's supposition - nothing to worry about. The lump is just some kind of normal breast tissue lump, not even a cyst! My guess is that 30 or so years of wearing underwire bras forced some of that tissue to just reorganize itself. ;-)

The full report will, of course, be sent to my doctor, but I can't imagine it's going to contain much more information than what I was told. And, wonder of wonders, I had the mammogram, ultrasound and results all in under an hour! I had forgotten there were actually some medical things that got answered that quickly!

I started taking the Prednisone yesterday and upped the dosage of Topamax, too. No change yet. I'll keep y'all informed of any changes. Changes or not, I'll be calling my doctor next week to let him know what's going on and to determine our next step, per his directions.

Latest Doctor Visit - Part 2

Ok, this is proof I truly have bad headaches and am not fully functional...

After all the headache discussion, there was actually a second part to my doctor visit Tuesday. Joy of joys, on Sunday night, I had noticed I had a rather large lump in my left breast. Oh, goody. It's on the underside, just above the underwire area in my bra, in an area where I would notice it if it had been there very long, even without my regular breast exams. My first thought was, "Great. Something else to deal with." My next thought was, "Oh, geez, I'm gonna have to get a mammogram. I hate those things." I missed getting mine last year, so I knew that was definitely going to be the first step once I told my doctor.

Anyway, sure enough, my doctor checked the lump and said it felt glandular and told me to get a mammogram and an ultrasound to find out what's going on. He's fairly certain it's some kind of cyst, so we're going to go with his 30+ years of experience/intuition while awaiting the results. The mammogram and ultrasound are scheduled for noon on Wednesday, so at least I'll have answers quickly on this one. I know I'll get yelled at for not telling people about this, but I really don't think it's going to be anything to cause concern.

14 April 2009

Latest Doctor Visit

Hurray! Got my first long-term disability check from the insurance company yesterday. Feels much better to have that money in the bank and know we can pay rent and eat and all that jazz. And, apparently, since it's insurance payments and I paid the premiums myself (not paid by the company I worked for), it's apparently tax-free. :-) I think I just got a raise! The best part is the approval of this means I'm eligible for continued health benefits at the same rate I was paying previously, rather than having to pay the full cost myself. The first check I wrote was for next month's health insurance premiums.

I went to see my doctor today. We're going to see if Prednisone helps with the headaches as the one thing that's been consistent throughout all the tests are two indicators of some type of inflammation in my system. Unfortunately, we don't know where the inflammation is, though I did give the doctor a laugh.
Doctor: "There's definitely some type of inflammation in your system."
Me; "That's it! I'm not fat, I'm inflamed!!!!"
Doctor: [laughing too hard to respond]
So, started on the Prednisone this afternoon and should know by Thursday if it is going to help.

Also, the Topamax has not been helping, even at 2 pills/night. He told me to try 3 pills/night and 4 pills/night starting on Saturday if it's still not working (and the Prednisone isn't working, either, by that time). It's another of those trial-and-error things.

At least the depression is back under control since I've returned to my normal dosage of Zoloft. Life is much better on this dosage!

Many people have been offering suggestions to me and I discussed a couple of them with my doctor. The first one we discussed was the usefulness of me visiting a chiropractor. My doctor shook his head so hard I thought it was going to fly off his neck! He explained that, in reality, any GOOD chiropractor would listen to my entire health history and then refuse to do anything (too many unknowns along with the "knowns"). He said the problem would come when a chiropractor did not really pay attention to my health history or did not ask all the proper questions and/or follow up on the answers. So, I will not be going to a chiropractor any time in the near future.

I then asked about going to the Mayo Clinic. My doctor said, "I hate to bring up the practical issues, but would your insurance cover it?" When I explained that I would verify coverage before going, he stated that it might be worth the trip. However, he would like to discover if there's a way to find out if they would accept the results of all the MRIs/CT scans already done rather than redo all those expensive tests. New additional tests would make sense, obviously. He said that the doctors there are really good, but just because you hear all these wonderful stories does not mean every single person who goes to the Mayo Clinic is able to find answers. I would need to be prepared to come away with no more answers than I have now. If I decide to go, he would be willing to help me with whatever I would need. I think I will hold off on that decision for now.

The headaches have been really bad the last week or so. I really hope the Prednisone helps. I've felt like there's an elephant standing on my head most of the time recently and there have been times when a horse has kicked me just under that elephant's foot. I am sleeping pretty well most nights now, though I am still awakened by the headache frequently during the night...I rarely go to bed before 1:30 a.m., though.

No other news from here. Hope everyone is doing well!