Oh my aching back

Lying in the grass, waiting for the show.
Lying in the grass, waiting for the show.

So I threw my back out last week they day after I was in the emergency room for a stomach ache. Three days ago I started waking up every night in a night sweat. Yes, old age is upon me. Meanwhile my cousin texted to say she’s been diagnosed with a genetic disease that could explain a lot of the premature deaths in the family. The disease is called hemochromatisis. Coincidentally it was found during an investigation into stomach pain. No word yet if the two are related.

I tried to just get a doctor to tell me to take some Prilosec and see if my tummy ache would clear up. The urgent care doc sent me to the ER without much investigation. I called my doctor and he said yes, go to the ER. My stomach hurt a lot so I went to the ER. Once the ER heard about my underlying AFib I knew I was in for a long day of tests and so I sent Burt back to work. A cast of thousands took me around for a CAT scan and chest X-ray and I gave up 8 vials of blood. 6 hours later the conclusion was there was no life threatening blood clot, take some Prilosec and go see your regular doctor in a couple of days. Too bad that’s not really easy. I’ve been taking the Prilosec and my tummy still hurts but I am not going to the ER. I’m consulting with my doctor on logistics.

We were going to stay in Seattle and do another job but decided against it. If we’d stayed I’d see a doctor here. Now we are headed to Montana for two weeks, then back to OR for a little bit of work an the eclipse and then down to California for a job before heading to Arizona for Portal Irish Music Week and some more work. I’m thinking of calling doctors in California and making an appointment for September there. Ideas welcome.

Meanwhile the nightsweats are almost welcome. At least I know the cause roots, stem, and seed. The old ovaries are saying good night. Some 55,000 extra eggs in there with no where to go. Menopause is no longer a question but a fact. It’s been 81 days since I’ve seen my ‘friend.’ For the first time in my life I have a supply of products stashed everywhere I might need them (surprising irregularity will get a person organized) and no need for them. Oh, the irony. Regarding the unbelievable quantity of eggs we carry I always find it amazing. These eggs were in me while I was in my mother and they will come with me to the grave. You can’t have them.

The hemochromatosis is an interesting development. I’m planning on more thorough testing when I get to a doctor. The ER visit at least revealed that my liver is functioning properly so there is likely no problem now. I’ll get tested. If more of my relatives get tested we can figure out which branch of the family is carrying this thing and perhaps save some future lives from foreshortening. It’s an odd disease and frequently overlooked. In hemochromatosis the body absorbs and stores too much iron in the organs. Organs targeted vary.  The organs where your body stashes the iron begin to cause trouble and so symptoms vary greatly. My aunt, dead at 56, had congestive heart failure for no known reason. My mom had dementia at an early age. It could be these two sisters actually shared a genetic disorder that manifested in different ways. They both had thyroid problems and that is a common problem as well. Also my mom had terrible arthritis in her hands long before she showed signs of dementia. There’s a lot to think about.

Meanwhile my cousin, sad but lucky, will start treatment. To get rid of iron they take your blood. So, blood letting is inconvenient, tiring, and has a reputation for being a bad idea (see Geo. Washington) but could be worse. She’s young and hopefully this was caught before significant damage occurred.

Also, Mimi has definitely stopped eating regularly. It’s as if the vet visit pushed her to say, “Enough of this crap. I’m ready.” I’m feeding her wet food by the tiny dollop a few times a day. She seems to be rallying. Fingers crossed.

Mimi got a check up.
Mimi got a check up. She says, “Hi.”
Fircrest fire in Seattle
Fircrest fire in Seattle
This caught my eye. I imagine a lot of people tried to put the fire out.
This caught my eye. I imagine a lot of people tried to put the fire out.
Burt's newest assistant.
Burt’s newest assistant.
The new storage area.
The new storage area.
Hospital gurney ride.
Hospital gurney ride.

13 thoughts on “Oh my aching back”

  1. Geez, hemochromatosis! At least as you say, she is young and they can research this.
    Willis has not been well for months and yesterday we went all the way to Las Cruces [3 hours one way] for an MRI of his brain
    but he is 77 !

    So who is Burt’s new assistant? Looks like Burt and a split screen………..is it trick photography?

  2. Guess you’re an iron-rich kinda girl….

    Hi back to Mimi. She came from an extraordinary family of barn cats.

  3. Ear Nose and Throat doctor referred for MRI and his gal called yesterday that Willis’ brain is normal and fine. ENT doc does not think its an ear thing and says PT is next, geez

  4. remember the days when you would jump out of bed in am with nary a glitch—go to bed at night without a pain and SLEEP all night long? aah, those days….

  5. Hey Susan and Burt. glad to to see Portal is in your thoughts! Hemochromatosis is in my family, too. I had to get tested years ago to see if I was a carrier. the results were inconclusive they told me……… Females are okay until we go through menopause and then the accumulation of iron happens, so I understand. It had been suggested that if you have it, use pet leaches, I forget how often and it will keep the iron accumulation in check…….. I think about that now and then. Miss you guys. Hope Mimi pulls through……..XOXO

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