Drunken stupor, but I missed the party

I had an appointment with Dr C today. It’s an hour drive from where I live, and about 25 minutes into the drive, this overwhelming feeling of drunkenness overtook me. It’s happened before, with onset about 2 months ago, but it’s rather unpredictable as to when it will actually happen. And when it flares when I’m driving, it’s scary. And potentially dangerous.

I got off the highway and took the longer, slower road into town, since it was the only available precaution I could take, aside from stopping alongside of the road, but without any confidence the feeling would pass soon. And it didn’t.

The reason I went to Dr C was to square away why my acid reflex had suddenly returned, but the focus quickly turned into a 60 minute visit trying to unravel the mystery surrounding my sudden cognitive downslide. We narrowed it down to a few possibilities. The symptoms have coincided with the new nasal meds I’m taking for what Dr J thinks was a mold exposure that has infected my sinuses. Dr C seems to think that Dr J is on the right track, but that the newest information coming down the pipe is that what frequently happens with the fungal infection is a staph infection. It’s as if we have peeled away one layer, revealing a new layer that is potentially causing a problem. We won’t know for certain until she get the MARCAN nasal swabs into her office and we can test. MARCAN is an acronym for something, but I was in such a haze, not much penetrated. Very unlike me.

In the meantime, she ordered more blood. Some of which is testing for a persistent Bartonella infection. She thinks we’ve conquered the actual bacteria that cause the Lyme, but since I got a 3 for 1 when I got bit, she’s wondering if it’s one of the other 2 bacteria also complicating things.

And boy did we pull some blood. I’m pretty sure that there were at least 15 tubes she had to fill. We had so much to fill, in fact, that the line clotted off before she could finish filling the tubes on her first stick. This meant she’d have to stick me again, and while I have good humor about these things, I was disappointed when the second stick didn’t give as generously as we needed. She was going to make it work though, with the tubes she did have filled.

Before I left, we discussed the fact that I had clinical today. I’d be dealing with patients. I expressed to her my concern that I could potentially hurt someone, with my judgement and perception so off kilter today. She agreed and wrote me a note to excuse me for today.

So while the drunkenness has largely passed (I still get off balance sometimes just walking around the house), the fatigue as settled in pretty significantly. The good news is that it should pass after a good night’s rest. This is important since I have a sociology exam tomorrow, and I need to be able to focus.

Wish me luck.

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More Questions… and Fantasies

BP Cuff pic

March 9, 2015 – More questions… and Fantasies

Some new symptoms have developed and it’s driving me crazy, as I try to determine the cause. Lately, after most meals, I end up fatigued, dizzy and foggy headed. When I stand up and walk away from the table, I feel drunk. It’s a horrible feeling, and happens both at home and if I go out to eat.

So I’ve decided to do some home testing. I’m tracking my blood pressure to see if it’s postprandial hypotension. I’m tracking my blood sugar using a blood glucose meter you get OTC. I like to be able to give the doctor some info she can work with in order to help me determine the cause of symptoms.

Call it “practicing my SBAR skills” for when I’m officially an RN. (For those who are unfamiliar with SBAR, it stands for situation, background, assessment and recommendation, and helps facilitate communication between health care providers so that patients can get optimal care.)

I can’t afford to be dizzy and fatigued. I have homework to get done over Spring Break. And yesterday I was fantasizing about eating “normal” foods with my family. If I didn’t have to be careful about gluten, or grains, or whatever, what would I have? For just one day…?

A real slice of pizza!

Eggplant rollatini!

A fat slice of chocolate cake!

A beer!

Mom’s lasagna!

Oatmeal raisin cookies!

Real southern fried chicken!

But the truth is, even if I do finish up my work early, and leave the rest of the week to recover from such a day of freedom, I’d be putting myself at risk to aggravating the intestinal linings more than I already do trying to live as normal a life as I can. I’m not sure how long the setback could be, or how love recovery would take, and I’m in the throes of school right now. I just can’t afford taking that risk.

But boy, it’s nice to think about.