Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I Have Bronchitis

I am a bit frustrated! I usually don't have so many health issues back to back. Last Tuesday, I started noticing a slight pain my back while breathing in. I had pneumonia the last time I felt that way, but I told myself it was probably just a strained muscle. Plus, I was on colistin - if I was already on an antibiotic, how could I get an infection? I was in denial because I was going on vacation and didn't have the sick/free time to go to the doctor beforehand.

The pain went away on Thursday, but then my body started aching, and I starting coughing up some really nasty stuff. I just took Tylenol and chalked it up to bad allergies. We were in Maine on Friday morning, and that's when the coughing really started. I told myself it takes a few days to get the allergens out of my system. But, by the end of the day, I felt like absolute crap and crawled into bed early.

Saturday was a little better. I was still coughing up lots of nasty stuff and aching, but I managed enjoyed our hike and the fresh air made me feel a little better. However, on Sunday, I started feeling achy again, and I was still coughing, so I finally conceded defeat and admitted it was something more than allergies and that I needed to go the doctor.

Luckily, we were able to catch an earlier flight on Monday and got into Austin in time for me to make it to the doctor. A chest x-ray showed bronchitis. The doctor went through a few drugs before he settled on Levaquin as being safe while TTC. That night, my fever spiked to over 101 degrees, and I took Tuesday off from work.

When you have a chronic disease like CF, dealing with doctors and nurses can sometimes be interesting because you often know more about your condition than they do. This was the case on Monday. I always communicate with my CF doctor via the CF clinic coordinator, who is a nurse. After she spoke with my doctor, she called and told me the doctor did not have time to see me, so I should see my PCP or go to the ER. I asked her “so, should I make sure I get a chest x-ray and a sputum culture?” to which she laughed and replied “Dr. Smith said ‘she knows what to do, I’m not worried about her.’ Heck you could probably teach me!”

Then, at the PCP’s office, he sent me for a chest x-ray but didn’t mention a sputum culture. When I asked about this, he said, “We don’t do sputum cultures for lung infections because they are contaminated by mouth bacteria.” I then explained to him that CFers have unusual bugs in their lungs, so we always do cultures. He was surprised to hear I usually culture pseudomonas aeruginosa (which is very common for CFers and is a big reason we get sick and have lung damage). So he agreed we could do the culture (although I ended up not being able to bring anything up at the appointment). Next I hold him which antibiotics I am usually prescribed (Levaquin and Ciproflaxin), and he checked which was better for TTC.

Anywho, it’s now Wednesday evening and I am feeling a little better. The body aches are gone, and the nasty phlegm is reduced a bit, although I am still hacking like crazy. My back hurts again too. But my fingers are crossed that I am on the mend. I went to work today for about six hours, and it wasn’t too bad.

Of course, this whole bronchitis episode has affected TTC a bit. We weren’t able to be super-aggressive this month because I felt too icky. And my chart is messed-up because of the fevers. But, it I think I did ovulate despite the bronchitis (due to other fertility signs), and we still got a few “efforts” in, so hopefully that will be enough!

1 comment:

Carolyn said...

Hope you feel better!!

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