My near miraculous recovery!
This is going to be long... But I think it's worth the read. For years I have been having pain in my right side. The first time I had it looked at the doctor did an ultrasound, CT Scan and then hidascan. They said my liver was "a little enlarged" but nothing really to worry about. My gallbladder was fine. They didn't know what was wrong. About this time my insurance ran out and I just decided to deal with it. Put it in my head that it was my gallbladder acting up, and went on with my life. Eventually, I changed my diet which helped with the pain level. I learned to live with it and swore that one day when I had insurance again I would go have my gallbladder looked at. I moved on and just kept going. Fast forward to two or three months ago. My side pain was getting worst. I thought I shoudl have it looked at but decided not to worry too much about it. I had a trip to San Diego coming up and I decided to wait to she the doctor for a check up while there. Fast forward to one month ago (approx), we came to San Diego for a visi, I got an appointment set up and SPECIFICALLY said "I want to see the DOCTOR, not the Nurse Practitioner." They said okay and set it up for me. Fast forward again to 15 Sept. I went in for my appointment and I'll be damned... I was set up to see the Nurse Practitioner. I haven't' had much luck with her. She is the one that insisted I didn't drink enough water (I was drinking 100 ounces a day!), that I needed to lose weight by using Weight Watchers ONLY as it was the ONLY way to lose weight and everything else did NOT work, argued with me that I was not active (when I already was), told me my cholesterol was too high (it went from 180 down to 120) and threatened me with ''You better fix it or I'll make you go on cholesterol meds'' (Yea, and you'll what? tie me down and force me to take it?"), refused to refill my Byetta or prescribe protonix for my heartburn b/c I wouldn't ''try'' prilosec first (tried it. Doesn't work) and basically made me feel like a piece of crap. So I didn't want to see her again. But they keep setting me up to see her. THAT reason alone made me not want to go to a doctor.But I really needed my side pain checked out. So I go there. I get diagnoses with Asthma and then I tell her about the side pain. She was sure it was my gallbladder and sets up a referral for an Ultrasound and has my chest X-ray done to make sure there isn't anything wrong causing the asthma. The chest Xray comes back fine. Up to this point, certain foods hurt like hell to eat. Some don't. I have to be careful about the amount I eat or I hurt... and basically, I have side pains when I eat too much (which is a normal sized meal.) Fast Forward to 18 Sept. I go in for the ultrasound. The lady takes me back, does the ultrasound. She was pressing pretty damned hard, so hard in fact, that she lightly bruised the skin over my ribs. I get done and go back to the boat in a lot of pain and rest the whole day b/c it hurt so bad. On the 22 Sept I get a phone call from the NP. Now, in all my years working, dealing and being a part of the medical field, there was always the thing about not giving bad news over the phone. To me, that is professional. Well, she calls me and says they have the results back. I was like "Oh okay". And she says "Your gallbladder is okay but you have a mass on your liver." I asked what it could be and her answer was oh soeffing helpful. ''Well, it could be nothing or it could be something''. As compared to...?? Then said it could be adhesions, abscess or tumors. They could be benign or cancerous. And then said she put in a referral for a CT Scan to get a better idead of what we're dealing with. My heart sank. I was terrrified. I got off the phone and I researched for mass on liver and other liver ailments. I searched high and low. I was still in massive pain too. It never went away. I was in constant pain 24/7 still and I could not eat ANYTHING without setting off the excrutiating pain. I was miserable! and now I was thinking about possibly having cancer, dying and leaving my two young kids behind, updating my will, etc. I knew there were a lot of things it could be and looked up tumors. There were 5 types that I found. 3 benign and 2 cancerous. One cancer could be removed and you would recover. The other one would give you about a year to live. I became worried and sad... not just from the thought of having cancer but because the side pain was so unbarable I could not take it. I could starve and be fine or I could eat and double over in pain. I called the NP back and she said we were still waiting for the approval to go through and they would call me. I told her about the pain and asked what I should do or if they could give me something. She said if it was too bad to go to the ER since there was nothing they could do at the office. At that point I was irritated. What about something for pain? Then I paniced... What if it IS a tumor and she's just not saying. Why else would she not prescribe a pain pill to hold me over and tell me to go to the ER instead? I was really freaking out inside but trying to hold it together for everyone else. I decided to wait until Friday so i could finish the homeschool week with the boys and get to their first consultation. That way if I am admitted, husband would not have to worry about all that himself. Friday: We get up and go to the consultation. After the consultation we stopped to eat. I ate a burger and fries and a soda. I figured if I ws going in, I was going in horrible pain! It worked! I was in pain! I got to the ER about 2:15 PM and checked in. I waited in the waiting room until 3:45 before they got my vitals and assessed me. Then I went back to the waiting room to wait until I was called back. I figured this would be a LONG wait since it's the Navy hospital. They were full that day too. I was thinking it would be about 8 or so before I got back there. At something like 5:30 ish they called me back. I thought "wow, I must be bad." They took labs and started an IV site in case it was needed (always comforting, right?) and asked about the pain, etc. Then had me sit in the hall and wait. They were SO full that day that they didn't have any beds open. In fact the 2 car accident people that came in by ambulance were on their beds in the hall with us. There were about 5 of us that were being monitored in the hall. It was pretty bad! So eventually the lady came back with a cup and pitcher of orange drink. She said it was contrast for the contrast and dye CT Scan I was to have. I had to drink it all. Take your time. I would like to describe the taste as orange flavored stomache acid that had been peed in. Mmmmm. Don't you wish you had some!? I managed to drink it all and wanted to hurl so bad. After about an hour (it after 7 PM at this point) I got to go for my CT Scan. Then went back to the hall to wait. They came up and got me to a bed and I was worrying myself sick that they would come back and say "It is a tumor..." and I was freaking out privately in my own little hell. The doctor finally came in and said that I do NOT have a mass on my liver. He had others look it over too and no one there could find a mass. Talk about the weight of the world being lifted off your shoulder! I started crying and thanking them. He said my gallbladder was big and they wanted to do their own ultrasound to see if I had any stones. I was like COOL! But they doped me up first with Deladid (sp?). Man that stuff is awesome! I sleep soundly while they got it ready upstairs. I got the ultrasound done... it was very different from the first one. No bruised ribs! She had me take deep breathes and hold it so she could get better pictures and took a LOT longer too. So I knew that the first lady didn't do a great job. Back downstairs they told me my liver is HUGE! It goes down so far that it stops 1/2 way down my kidney and goes all the way over to the other side of my body. I way like ! He said to change my diet, don't drink and definitely have a doctor following me. So I was released doped to the eyeballs and prescribed more meds for pain and nausea. So I called a friend today and told him what the doctor said about my liver. Friend says that it's probably a secondary problem and that there is probably something else wrong that is causing it... goes down a list of things and mentions the duodenum. I was like ''I have trouble with my duodenum!'' and he was like ''really?'' I said yea, I've had that trouble since before this pain ever started. My duodenum swells a lot. Sometimes swells shut. He described different things that could happen from that and basically listed every symptom I have. I was floored! So he told me to take Zantac 150 twice a day. It's as good as the protonix I was getting before. AND Husband had a moment of brilliance when he realized that the pain this week is probably from inflammation from the ultrasound irritating it so bad. So Husband ran to the store for Zantac and IB profin. When he got back I took a Zantac and Laid down. It took a but but I could actually FEEL it working! I could feel the stuff churning and my duodenum relax (because I could feel stuff move through it) and my liver working hard and emptying into my stomache. It was bizzarre! But a relief! I ended up feeling a lot better within an hour and I was actually STARVING! So i ate dinner... chicken, corn and cheese cake... and then took more meds. I feel like a new person! The pain isn't' as bad, my heartburn is almost gone completely... when I start to get the side pain, it hurts, then goes away instead of hurting until i can no longer take it. I actually feel pretty awesome right now! Husband has dubbed it my near miraculous recovery LOL. And I think after a couple weeks I'll be spoofy again. But it will take time for my liver to fully heal so I will have to go to the doctor to be followed. Which brings me to... On Monday I am calling Tricare and telling them to change my doctor. That was a horrible misdiagnosis, unprofessional behavior at best and if they won't let me see the doctor, then I want a new one. I will tell them I want a MILITARY doctor, not civilian. And then I will be writing a letter about why. One copy will go to Tricare, the other will go to the Doctor.