Friday, February 10, 2006

I guess tonight it's good news, bad news, good news and bad news.

The good news? The increase in the pump is helping the pain this time. I never felt any difference in the other two increases. I'm just thrilled to have a little less pain.

The bad news? When they do a refill on a pump they first draw out all the old medicine out of the pump. The program on the computer they have talks to my pump and it tells them how much medicine they should get out of the pump. This time they drew out more medicine than should have been in there. This could mean one of several things...the pump malfunctioned this month, it might have been programmed wrong (which the nurse may never admit), there could be a kink in the catheter they leads from the pump to the spinal canal or the worst one...there could be an inflammatory mass on the spine from the catheter or the medicine dripping there. The mass is very rare...but it does happen. The doctors think that it usually happens to people at very high doses of medicine that have had their pumps in for quite some time. But, it can happen to someone who just has a reaction to that catheter sitting in the spinal canal. I am just praying that this is not the case. I wouldn't like it if the pump was malfunctioning or there was a kink in the catheter but that would be a much better reason than the mass. Please pray with me that it was just a one time happening and it meant nothing.

The bad news again? I have not had any energy for quite some time. It is a real effort just to get up and shower and get dressed. I would prefer to stay in my robe and nightgown all day long. This is not normal for me. I tried looking up some of my symptoms on the computer a couple nights ago and it seemed to point to the thyroid. I had most of mine removed when I was 16 and am taking a fairly high dose of thyroid right now. The doctor agreed when I saw him Wednesday that the thyroid should be checked because the last time it was checked was July 2005. Well I went into the hospital last night around 3:30 or 4:00 and had the blood drawn...once they found a vein. Remember my hiding veins?

The good news? I am low on thyroid. I had told the doctor that I thought I might be on the high side because when the last test had come back it had been a little high. This is really good news. He is putting me on a 2nd thyroid medication and now I have hope that it might restore my energy and even help me to lose weight. I couldn't figure out why I gained weight and was eating so little. This is probably the reason.

After writing this I checked one of the chronic back pain forums I visit often and got a reply from the doctor that lives in Columbus that did my trial and was going to do my pump implant until I found Dr. Grove in much closer. The doctor in Columbus is Dr. Michael Whitworth and here is what he said could have happened to the pump this time...

Quote...."Pumps have a tolerance of about 10% in terms of the delivery therefore could have delivered 10% less than expected, resulting in 10% increase in residual volume. Other possibilities: incorrect programming, obstruction to delivery (kink in the spinal catheter, surgical suture inadvertantly placed around the catheter during implant, etc), overfilling of the pump during the last visit, rotor malfunction or battery depletion, miscalculation of the residual volume"

That sounds like the best news yet. It just might be that it was overfilled last time or there is an allowance for delivery. Makes me feel a little better.

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