Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Medical Update

Now that the election madness is finally winding down...whew! I'm still a little giddy from yesterday, and I imagine I'll be crashing pretty soon. It was totally worth it. Totally.

I saw Dr. R again today. Here are the new developments, in no particular order:

1) My overly sensitive nose (dubbed "Supernose" for short) might be a side effect of the Rifampin I've been taking for the bartonella infection. So I'm switching from Rifampin to Bactrim. I'll probably be taking it for another five or six months. And I'm hoping that the Supernose will go away.

2) To combat the nasty die-off reactions I've been having, I will be taking yet another supplement. It's an antioxidant mix called FibroBoost. It, along with the quercetin I'm taking, will hopefully limit cytokine production and thereby prevent some of the unpleasant die-off symptoms.

3) I'm to continue taking nystatin to prevent yeast overgrowth from coming back, but I'm done with the diflucan. Yipee!

4) I might switch up my sleep meds because the currently prescribed dose of clonazapam is leaving me a bit sedated in the morning. I may switch over to Ambien CR, but I need to discuss this with one of my other doctors first.

5) I'm getting fat. Well, not fat, but I am gaining weight now that my appetite has improved. While it's good that my appetite has come back, I simply can't be as physically active as I used to be (at least not yet). So I'm gaining back the weight I lost. I can still wear all of my old clothes, but if I don't get a handle on balancing caloric intake/output, it'll be time to go shopping for some new jeans. So I need to figure out how to eat enough good things, while keeping the calorie in line with current physical limitations.

6) I'm adding a new antibiotic to my regime. As I've mentioned before, the Lyme-disease-causing bacteria, B. burgdorferi, can change form inside your body. It exists in three forms: the spiral shape that has a cell wall, the cell-wall-deficient form known as the "L-form,", and the dormant or latent cyst form. I'm currently taking azithromycin for intracellular Lyme. Now we're adding Omnicef as an anti-spirochete drug. Eventually we'll add another medication to fight the cyst form of the bacteria. It's important to eventually treat all forms of the bacteria, because it's a tricky little bastard and can morph between the three forms if it is threatened on one front.

7) Next week I'm meeting with a new primary care physician. I'm moving to a holistic practice that employs MDs, NDs, acupuncturists, massage therapists, etc., in the hope that my doctor there will be open-minded and somewhat knowledgeable about Lyme disease (unlike conventional infectious disease physicians and internists). Also, it will be refreshing to have a primary care doc who doesn't dismiss "alternative" treatments but who also has the benefit of Western medical training. I hope it goes well.

8) Later this month will mark the one-year anniversary of my illness. I got sick on Thanksgiving day last year. Hopefully this year will bring a little wellness along with the pumpkin pie. (Or pumpkin ice cream!)


It looks like the yeast overgrowth has been successfully treated. Now we're focusing our attack on the B. burgdorferi and bartonella. We're using Bactrim for the bartonella, and azithromycin and Omnicef for the B. burgdorferi. More antibiotics mean that I can look forward to more side effects and die-off reactions. But it might just also mean that I'll get better one day.

New med list:

Azithromycin, Omnicef, bactrim, nystatin, clonazapam (may change), vicodin, sertraline, Astelin nasal spray, Yasmin, ashwagandha, quercetin, B-vitamin complex, nasty drink mix, d-ribose, n-acetyl-l-cysteine, acetyl-l-carnitine, calcium, vitamin c, vitamin d, iron, omega 3, probiotics, FibroBoost, and B12.

1 comment:

  1. Suzie Q, For sleep you might want to try Trazadone. I don't know if it will interfere with other meds, but I have taken it to help sleep, and can awaken feeling refreshed, not doped. Ambien scares me.