Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Fascinating story about my health, part 1

Ok…if I have any readers left I’d like to thank them for sticking around during my hiatus. This will be a catch up post and hopefully I will be able to resume blogging on a more regular basis.

I’m going to explain my health situation…get a score card…it gets complicated.

Issue #1

For over 2 years I have not had the ability to walk in a straight line. I brush in to hallway walls, I run people off of the sidewalk, I trip, I fall, I’m fun to watch. I thought it would go away but when I found myself well in to the 2nd year of this I finally decided to go to the doctor and see what was going on.

My primary care doc did a very rudimentary neurological exam and I passed with flying colors. The doc drew many viles of blood and she gave me a referral to have a brain scan to rule out a brain tumor. Friends and family were happy to discover that there is now medical proof that I actually have a brain and we were all happy to know that the scan showed no tumors. The blood work came back clear, too. It took a couple of months for my next referral to come to fruition. I was sent to an audiologist. I was very happy to finally get to see an audiologist because I have suffered from tinnitus, (ringing in the ears), for decades. I also thought I was losing my hearing because I tend to keep my television and radio turned up so loud that my neighbors can enjoy my programs with me.

The audiologist exam came back stating that there wasn’t a thing wrong with my hearing, so my next referral was for an Otolaryngologist (Per Wikipedia: Otolaryngology is the branch of medicine that specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of ear, nose, throat, and head and neck disorders.) This guy looked in my ears, up my nose, down my throat and in my eyes just like the last 2 doctors. But then he had me stand up flush with the wall and close my eyes and walk heel, toe, heel, toe away from the wall. I lifted my foot off the ground to take my first step and I almost fell over. He stopped me and had me step away from the wall and cross my arms and close my eyes. Again I almost fell over. The doc said that he needed for me to have an ENG evaluation and that meant another referral.

Weeks later I found myself in a Clinical Audiologists office wearing this thing on my face that looked like a scuba mask only much bigger. The mask had doors in front of the eye area so that they could block your vision one eye at a time. There was also a teeny, weeny camera inside the mask that looked straight in to my eye balls. I had to watch a darting and flashing red light with both eyes and then with either eye isolated. This was enough to make me feel like I needed a seat belt to stay on the exam table. The next test included sticking little tiny water filled balloons in to my ear canal. (I looked very attractive and I’m just sorry you all weren’t there to get to see me.) The balloons were attached to a machine that regulated either warm or cold water to flush through the balloons. It was a very noisy process but not as unpleasant as it sounds. This process also made me dizzy. When the test was completed I was told that I would probably hear back from my primary care doctor in the next couple of days. That was in January. By the end of February I had asked my primary care doc 3 times for the results to the ENG and I finally got them on February 20.

“Caloric testing shows a unilateral weakness on the right with a directional preponderance to the left. Non-caloric subtest are within normal limits except for the Dix-Hallpike maneuver. The Dix-Hallpike maneuver for BPPV is positive with the head hanging to the left and the right.”

Alrighty, then. As I have yet to hear back from my primary care doc I did my own internet research on BPPV and discovered that means that I have deposits way inside my ear that have floated off and wound up in places where they don’t belong. The most popular cure for this is a simple doctor applied head maneuvering that causes the deposits to get released from where they are trapped. When this doesn’t do the trick the deposits can also be removed surgically. I’m hoping for the head maneuvering. (And I hope that I will be able to get this taken care of sooner than later. Last Saturday evening I was at a very fun and highly attended barbeque and I stumbled and fell and skinned my knee. Not a glamorous moment for someone of my age.)

Ok, that's issue #1. Please stay tuned for issue #2 and #3. The last one includes an abulance ride!!!



Blogger Natalie said...

i would have guessed an inner ear problem, but not the floating around and getting lodged in places unknown problem. and the whole doctor referral thing drives me crazy. i want to just go to one place and have it all done. wishful thinking on my part!

1:02 PM  
Blogger Busy Bee Suz said...

Oh my gosh...I feel so bad for you. Seems like it would be something simple, but I guess you are NOT a simple gal.
I hope you are getting closer to some have been through enough.
The good thing? You still have your sense of humor. They can't touch that can they???
Take care, Suz

3:42 PM  
Blogger Big Hair Envy said...

Your life will continue to be long and fulfilling if you just keep that Tanu sense of humor!!!!

Any update on Willow?? I still think about that precious kitty....

6:31 PM  
Blogger Jason, as himself said...

“Caloric testing shows a unilateral weakness on the right with a directional preponderance to the left. Non-caloric subtest are within normal limits except for the Dix-Hallpike maneuver. The Dix-Hallpike maneuver for BPPV is positive with the head hanging to the left and the right.”

HUH? I hope they explained it better than this!

9:33 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Ok, I am so picturing you standing in front of a doctor with his hands on your head and your head wobbling around "hanging to the left and the right." And I am not amused that you have had to wait this long for said "head manuevering!" I am soooo sorry you have had to endure all of this. This is a sad commentary on the state of medicine in this country. I hope we get some resolution on this (without surgery for goodness sake!).

I have missed your writing. I have pretty much quit reading the other blogs I read (for reasons that I shall reveal in a more private manner...)

Keep us posted!

10:34 PM  
Blogger Ms. Florida Transplant said...

I'm looking forward to hearing the next 2 parts!

You stopped by my site from bossy's & I just wanted to say hi.

I also wanted to let you know that I moved blogs shortly before being featured by bossy, so please come by the new site if you're interested!


6:31 PM  
Anonymous Amanda said...

This sounds Like Mikes Great Aunt Netties problem too. She has "Crystals in her ears" I'll help knock them out if you want! Come over I have a pencil....we'll get the rocks out!

8:30 PM  
Blogger Diane F. said...

I hope you don't mind, but I have been reading your blogs. You are a wonderful writer and I love your sense of humor. My daughter is like you, I am not, though I wish I could be so.
I have been bumping into walls most of my life, I have been told I have a loose screw, looks like it may be true!

6:15 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home