Wednesday, August 11, 2010

My Histamine Saga

So first of all no I didn't fall off the face of the earth or the blogosphere for that matter. Work just ate my life (C'est la vie de l'heures supplĂ©mentaires). It dawned upon my sleep deprived mind at somepoint over the last week that I hadn't yet written about my diagnosis saga. I don't know that story really adequately covers it since it stretches over about a year and a quarter. 
Once upon a time in a land far far away(or perhaps right around the corner ... it's all relative).... I was coughing and coughing and coughing and oh yeah coughing. I would get way out of breath just from coming up and down the stairs. I'm pretty sure I had pulled pretty much every muscle involved in breathing/coughing. My friends decided it was time to strong arm me into going to the health center. Such a nice thing of them to do right at valentines day('09). I go there and cough on K, one of the nurse practicioners. She is super nice listens to my lungs and list of complaints. She decides it's probably a little worse with the allergies or one of the bugs that is circulating campus. I leave with a script for Tessalon Perles and an antibiotic(just incase it moves in and gives me a sinus infection since it's right before spring break, never did fill that half). Those little things settle the coughing down quite a bit for a few hours after each one. 
Fast forward, two-three weeks, now Mid-March, I'm still coughing and out of Perles. Friends again shove me towards the Health Center to go cough on them, again. My lungs apparently sound a little off to K. She gives me a script for albuterol, as well as starting me back up on allegra. She is firm that it is just allergies that are triggering some sensitivity in my lungs possibly a 'mildly asthmatic' type response. I am given strict instructions that if I am using the albuterol more than a few times a week I should come back to get something stronger. She tells me this probably won't happen (ha!).
Fast forward to early April, yet another trip to the health center to follow up. This time I apparently sound "distant" when one of the other nurse practitioners, D listened to my lungs. This is suprising since they have made me blow on a PFM and I hit 460(75% of current PB) which is way above the 'normal' value for my height/age.  After a few raised eyebrows and trying to figure it out. I got a script for Symbicort 80/4.5. There was no diagnosis really at this point just a well we'll try this. Somewhere around here was when the Aerochamber came into my life, which is good since coordination and motor control are not some of my strong points(that's a whole other post). 
The Symbicort/Allegra combo really did the trick for me and got me to the point where I could actually breathe and feel better. I went to my (new) doctor  in May having graduated from the pediatrician's office(finally!). She was somewhat puzzled by my lungs and such and wanted to try to taper me off of symbicort to see if it was really needed to get me through the day everyday or just to get me through a rough patch. She was thinking more just that I'd had a bad allergy flare.  Summer came and went with a bunch of  puffs on the albuterol on bad air quality days but otherwise uneventfully. 
Fall I managed to taper down and off the Symbicort completely, which lasted from early/mid October all the way through mid January. March landed me in the student health center for a nice course of prednisone, really I should've gone to the ER over that weekend but I'm stubborn.
May came and Dr. Z(GP) thought that perhaps it was time to send me off to an allergist since clearly I'm not outgrowing this stuff and I'm sick of being itchy and such all the time. I got in for an appointment with Dr. B in mid June. He made me do PFT and decided that I do have asthma (finally!). Okay so I kind of knew I had it but they hadn't really say as much they were just kinda like oh well let's treat you with this stuff and see what happens.


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