Thursday, November 18, 2010

Or an addict.

Over the summer, I had my annual physical and lady inspection. Things were all good under the hood except for one little thing in my labwork. It seems I have hematuria, high red blood cell count in the urine. It was news to me, so they redid the labs a second time, and then a third time. After three positive tests, it wasn't likely to be a fluke or laboratory error, and we'd ruled out the simple causes like a urinary tract infection.

Hematuria can be a sign of bad things like kidney disease or cancer, so I was sent out to a urologist in Fresno to pee for them. If anything has come out of this experience, it's that I am a pro at peeing in cups now! The urologist made me get a CT scan to see if there was anything lurking in my midsection. And then finally, last Friday, I got a cystoscopy, during which the doctor inserts a lighted tube through your urethra and into your bladder to get as up-close and personal as possible.

I'll tell you, the feeling of something going in through the out hole is not pleasant. It basically made me do this:

A Comprehensive Glossary Of Gifs

Once the tube was in, they pumped my bladder full of distilled water to inflate it for optimal visibility. And what that really means is that the liquid was spilling out of me and puddling on the table under my bare butt and there was nothing I could do about it because there was a tube holding my hoo-hoo open. But soon enough, the doctor had seen what he needed to see, and with one ripping, burning tug, the tube was gone.

There was nothing in there, of course. No bloody tumors, crystals, gremlins, nothing. Apparently I'm just one of those freaks who has lots of red blood cells. I'll go back to the urologist in six months for another round of labs, but as far as I'm concerned, it's just another example of me being an overachiever.

In other health news, I started seeing a new neurologist after my little fainting spell during my arm lump removal in September. He thinks that I might have been misdiagnosed years ago (and wrongly medicated ever since) and that perhaps the events that occur when I pass out are not actually seizures, but rather non-epileptic convulsions. It sounds hokey when I say it, but his theory actually makes a lot of sense. I'll be having a series of tests over the next couple of months to see if he's right, starting tomorrow (today, actually) with a sleep-deprived EEG. I've been up all night, and will have been up for about 24 hours when I go in for the EEG in a few hours. Weee! Luckily Jason was able to get permission to miss work to take me to my appointment--I sure won't be in any shape to drive myself.

Lately, though, I don't have to do much to stay awake at night. The good old California air pollution is getting to me in a bad way, and nothing prevents sleep like not being able to breathe properly. A recent Forbes article titled "America's Dirtiest Cities" said:
"The biggest problem spot in the country is California's San Joaquin Valley, where farming, industry, car culture and topography collide to trap smog. Wildfires contribute to the problem."
Guess where we live? I finally had to give in and go get some help from my doctor. So now antihistamine pills and nasal spray are part of my daily routine. My medicine cabinet makes me look like an old person. Or an addict.

I'm going to take a nice long afternoon nap when I get home.


The Steffens said...

Oh you poor poor thing. I've had a tube in my lady parts and been injected with some solution and it was HORRIBLE. I am so sorry. What an awful experience. But I'm very happy to hear everything came back with an all clear!

Bev said...

Well, that all sounds MOST unpleasant! I'm so glad that you got the green light and found no lurking gremlins. Enjoy your drugs, Elvis. ;)

Anonymous said...

I hope everything turns out okay. Thinking of you!