Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Day Nineteen

Pulmonary Embolism Recovery
Something interesting happened to me a few minutes ago and it may shed light into what's at the root of my bout with Pulmonary Embolism: 

About 15 minutes ago I was chatting with my neighbor, an RN who a few years ago worked with the surgeon that did my hernia surgery, and she told me that some time back she had a clot in her left forearm. The clot occurred after she received the anesthetic Propofol for a particular procedure.

She describe how the "clot" formed as a ball on her forearm, a few centimeters from where the anesthetic had been administered. The ball was about quarter sized, hurt a LOT and was "hot" to the touch.

Interestingly, I had the SAME experience! This happened on day five after the surgery. This is my post on Day Five:

The first setback that I notice is a lump on my left arm, where the IV was inserted. Not necessarily on the spot itself, but a bit further up the arm from the original point of entry for the needle. There is no color to the lump, but it hurts a LOT!

By night time, the pain in my left arm is unbearable; and this after applying multiple ice bags.

Although I didn't post it on Day Five, the lump was very hot to the touch!

My neighbor said that she had an ultra sound to check whether the clot had traveled up the arm; but it hadn't. I didn't have an ultrasound done because, frankly, I didn't think it was a clot! I thought it was a slight infection from the IV/anesthetic and nothing to worry about.

However, the very next day after having this pain in my arm I begin to feel the effects of the Pulmonary Embolism. Could this be a coincidence, or is it the root of my PE?!

Blog post from Day Six:

10:30PM - A *NEW* pain comes into the picture!

While lying down on the couch I feel a stabbing pain on the left side, below rib cage. The pain is excruciating! I can't even take a shallow breath without the pain causing me to scream!

I feel comfort when putting pressure in the area and I'm able to pass gas and burp. Evidenlty, the pain is due to trapped gas.

Sady, the pain lasts another hour and I am finally able to go to bed at 11:30PM, when the pain is tolerable.  

Could the lump in my arm be the culprit clot behind my Pulmonary Embolism?!

I'm meeting with my doctor tomorrow. Let's see what he says.

Went for blood work today with the goal of getting my liver enzymes checked. Tomorrow I have a doctor's appointment and will know if my enzymes have shot up or down. The measurement will determine whether or not I will keep taking Coumadin(see post from Day Sixteen for more details). 

Hernia Recovery
I went for an even longer walk today, covering at least 3/4 miles round trip, along a trail near my house. It was a warm, clear day and a perfect day for a walk. I'm a bit sore, but each day I'm getting better.

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