Monday, November 30, 2009
Update - just back from the ENT
So...the verdict is still out on whether I have an infection -- ENT doc, Dr.V (who is very cool, I might add), says that it doesn't APPEAR to be one (I only have one out of three of the signs of a typical ear infection), but he said it COULD be the start of a sinus infection based on my symptoms and the redness he observed in my ear so they're all over me like flies on....well, you know. It also could be that the mucus in my salivary glands (from the chemo, and they're still swollen) could be backing up into the eustacian tube causing these symptoms and that could also lead to an infection. And a third, yet remote, possibility is that this could be the beginning stages of hearing loss brought on by the chemo I'm on (Carboplatin in particular) b/c it's a known side effect which unfortunately would be irreversible...so just in case I have a hearing test scheduled for Wednesday -- if they detect hearing loss they'll look at modifying the dose of my last chemo or something like that -- so now the prayer list expands to include stable hearing so I can get the full current dose of chemo for the last round. If I was to guess which of the three possibilities we're dealing with - I would guess the back up into the eustacian tube - b/c I have no other sinus infection type symptoms - no congestion or runny nose, no headache issue except a very brief piercing/jarring feeling when I stand up quickly, and I also haven't noticed any hearing loss, thankfully. So what we're doing about this right now is starting me on a high powered decongestant to see if that clears things up and if I still have symptoms in a couple days they'll get me in for a CT scan of my sinuses to look for possible infection because they'll want to treat it asap if there is one there. As a bonus, the ENT said he did not feel any angry or swollen lymph glands in my neck - that only the salivary glands were swollen - loved hearing that. I was due to have a boobie inflation appointment at 4 pm at UCLA today but when I called to inform them I was heading to the ENT to investigate the ear issue they said I needed to reschedule that because they don't want to take a chance at doing the inflation while there could be an active infection in my body so now I have to go there on Friday instead. My husband often tells me I'm too chatty sometimes - often sharing more details than is necessary - but I laugh at him and tell him that my chattiness and TMI sharing habit has actually saved me numerous times - today it saved me a roundtrip to/from UCLA (that's 80 miles roundtrip during rushhour in L.A.) and a possible unnecessary new health problem. So - listen up folks - there's really no such thing as TMI when you're dealing with your health and your doctors and nurses -- tell them everything because that's the only way they can help keep you on the right path. I wonder if any of you are thinking why in the world I would go in for another inflation when I've already declared I'm not doing anymore of those. Well, I MIGHT do an inflation if the doctor looks at me and says he needs more room to work to turn these puppies into masterpieces in January...but if he doesn't need anymore room to do that then I won't do any inflating because I'm fine with their current size or smaller. I'm really going in to have him tell me what he can do to fix the divets and stuff from my scars and other imperfections during my surgery in January -- because hearing what he can fix will make it a bit easier to appreciate the discomfort and unattractive appearance of these expanders.