Friday, April 4, 2008

Endoscopy

Yesterday I had my endoscopy done. It wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be and I was actually looking forward to it in a weird sort of way. When I had my colonoscopy done I didn't get to fully take advantage of the great sleep afterwards. I knew this time what I had to look forward to so I had my hopes up. Since having Emma I haven't had a great night sleep.

Phillip was with me today so I got the priveledge of walking him through everything and where to go. I felt like such a pro knowing the in's and out's of the building. (Last time my Mom took me.) So we sat and talked for about 45 minutes until they called me back. They prepped me for the iv which was the part I was dreading. With all of the test I've had lately my poor arms look like blue, black and brown pin cushions. She decided to pick a new place of torture which was my hand! Last time they put an IV in my hand it looked like I came across a brick wall and I wasn't the one who won. They let me keep on my clothes which felt like I hit the jackpot. I was hoping to sport some blue paper pants or shirt this go round. I laid up on the table and waited in the hallway until they were ready to roll me into the procedure room.

They should really think about knocking the patient out before they wheel you in the procedure room. You get to see all of the beeping machines, tools, rubber gloves, towels, needles, tape and stuff I want to forget about. I'm normally a fairly quiet person. I like to sit back and take everything in and then speak when I have something important to say. I realized that when I'm nervous I become "Chatty Cathy." I start chatting the nurse up and asking her all kinds of questions. I was slightly disappointed that my nurses from the colonoscopy weren't tending to my room today. They were really nice and funny and put me at ease. The nurses this go round were on the quiet side. As I was waiting there waiting for them to get started one of the nurses walks by with this thing in her hands which I assume was my endoscope. It was not small or short! Then she comes over and puts a towel under my head and chest (I'm guessing it was for any mess I made) then she lays this plastic piece next to my mouth that had a hole in the middle of it. I could only guess that they would tape this to my face, put it in my mouth and insert the tubes. Not pleasant thoughts as your about to go to sleep. I've come up with this game I play when they give you the Demoral (hopefully I spelt that right) to make you go to sleep. I see how long I can stay awake. Sort of like fighting the medicine. It's so stupid but it entertains me for the 5 seconds I get to play. I made small talk with the nurse the first time to see how long I could talk and this time was spent reading the letters on the rubber glove box and watching them get blurrier by the second. Next thing I know I was being wheeled out to the car and whisked away to sleepy land at home.

I actually got to sleep from 12-5 and then went back to bed at 8:30 for the night! My nurse (Phillip) and Emma were busy during this time making me a special card cut out with butterflies, clouds and flowers. Emma ran into our room and over to my side and said, "Mommy, wake up!" It was the cutest card ever! I am the luckiest patient ever!

So the results of the test yesterday were that I have mild Gastritis with IBS. (irritable bowel syndrome) According to eMedicine this is what Gastritis is:

In people who have gastritis symptoms, pain or discomfort in the upper abdomen is the most common.
The pain is usually in the upper central portion of the abdomen (the "pit" of the stomach).
Gastritis pain occurs in the left upper portion of the abdomen and in the back. The pain seems to "go right straight through" a person as it travels from the belly to the back.
People often use the terms burning, aching, gnawing, or sore to describe the pain. Usually, a vague sense of discomfort is present, but the pain may be sharp, stabbing, or cutting.

Other symptoms of gastritis include the following:

Belching: Belching usually either does not relieve the pain or relieves it only briefly.

Nausea and vomiting: The vomit may be clear, green or yellow, blood-streaked, or completely bloody, depending on the severity of the stomach inflammation.

Bloating

Feeling of fullness or burning in the upper part of the belly

In more severe gastritis, bleeding may occur inside the stomach. Any of the following symptoms can be seen as well as those already mentioned.

Pallor, sweating, and rapid (or "racing") heart beat.

Feeling faint or short of breath

Chest pain or severe stomach pain

Vomiting large amounts of blood

Bloody bowel movements or dark, sticky, very foul-smelling bowel movements

So I have two new medicines to add to my cabinet. One for pain and one for the diarrhea and cramping. I also have to start eating Activia yogurt. I'm not a yogurt fan but I will try and force it down. It'll be good for my urinary tract and the fact that I have cystitis also. I have to go back and see Dr. L in one month and then go from there. Hopefully I can get this thing under control. Hopefully I'm done with having any issues for a good while. We'll see.

P.S. If you ever have to have an endoscopy done, do not worry. It's not bad at all and I didn't even have a sore throat afterwards!

6 comments:

Searching said...

Yay! I have that too! (Oh, wait, that's not a "yay" thing, is it?) Anyways, that is some crappy gastritis if it caused you that kind of pain!!! I hope those meds help.

I will confess that I, too, love the after effects of anesthesia. Prob more than I should. It's my fav part. I try and hang in there as long as I can when everything starts to fade because it's such a cool feeling. Hmmm, now I sound like a junkie... I'll start talking too much too, to try and prolong it. Never works. Ugh, once they put the scope down before I was all the way out. I felt that freaking hose going down my throat and it felt like I was going to choke to death. I agree, they need to knock you out before you ever set eyes on the procedure/operating room. I know they need you to scoot over to the other stretcher sometimes, but it would just be kinder to knock you out first.

Cheers to finally having an answer!!! Prayers that it's the right one and you'll be feeling much better SOON!

Shannon said...

Hey Sis!
I have good news for you, we are HUGE ACTIVIA fans in our household! Mike started buying it first many months ago in addition to our yogurts because he has stomach and bowel discomforts on occasion and now we all enjoy it, even the kids! As a matter of fact I sent the vanilla in Brooks lunch today and I had the banana/strawberry before my dinner tonight. Vanilla is the best and the peach is just peachy! You will like it...yogurt really is a over the counter miracle marvel for your body. I am so glad that they finally gave you enlightened direction and answers to ease us all. May you sleep better at night now knowing that it is just your "gastritis" acting up and not some medical mystery...

Sissy

Kim said...

http://www.culturelle.com/about_probiotics?gclid=CLml7-Pqw5ICFQY9gQodVTbGuA

Ashley,

Has anyone suggested taking probotics? I attached a link above that is from a specific brand, but any brand would probably be great for you. They are found usually at health food stores and are great, I love them. They specifically help with IBS and digestion. I'm sorry your diagnosis sounds so unpleasant but hallelujah that you finally know what it is!!

Ashley said...

I guess the Activia has the pro-biotics in it already and that's why he suggested it. I got Emma the Yoplait Dora "liquid" yogurt yesterday and had one and it was tolerable. I'm just not a great yogurt eater. Wish I was.

I'm glad and hope that this is what I really have so we can move on. It's much easier to manage when you know what you are dealing with.

Thanks everyone for your support! Makes things much easier!

Love to all!
Ash

p.s. Shannon, I went to the store this afternoon and got some vanilla Activia to try. I'll let you know how it it.

Shannon said...

Hey again...
Ok, I know this is going to sound like a Walmart/Sam's sales pitch for you but, Walmart sells a 12 pack of Activia for about $6's but Sam's sells a 32 pack for only $10.00's! If you try it and like it Sam's has the best deal there. I know I mentioned freezing your yogurts and trying it like a "frozen yogurt" but does the freezing process kill the live and active cultures which is the most important part? I think we should find out before you get hooked. I know my kids think that when I freeze their "Go Gurts" that they taste like ice cream...

Save Money, Live Better, Walmart...
;)

Searching said...

How goes it?