Monday, June 10, 2013

2003 - Pre-Diagnosis


This begins my journey of battling Multiple Myeloma.  MM is a blood cancer is in the Leukemia and Lymphoma family.  It is the least known of the three but is the fastest growing.  There is no cure, but hopefully can be controlled.  

In the summer of 2003, things began to go a little crazy with my health.  While the things that happened like pneumonia and back pain don't sound too unusual, it was, because I was very active and had never been sick.  I was in very good health - or so I thought.

Here's a few words about the month's leading up to the diagnosis:
6/03 – I came down with pneumonia/pluresy

7/03 – As the pneumonia cleared up, I began to have lower back pain.  I was sure I hadn't injured my back, because I had not been doing anything due to the pneumonia.

7/03 – Saw doctor as a follow-up to the pneumonia.  Chest x-ray is clear.  Doctor thinks the back pain is caused by muscle strain

10/03 – Saw doctor again because back pain persists and isn't improving.  Lower spine/lumbar x-ray reveals nothing except maybe a little arthritis in lower back

12/17/03 – I begin having fever and chills and vomiting begins in the evening

12/18/03 – After being sick all day, I go to the emergency room.  I'm treated for pneumonia/pluresy and get prescription for levaquin and inhaler (albuterol).  I'm starting to get suspicious that something is wrong.  There's no reason that I should get pneumonia twice withing 6 months.  I don't mention my suspicions to Lynda.

12/20/03 – The anti-biotic is working and I'm beginning to feel better.  However, the back pain intensifies

12/21/03 – Now, the back pain so bad that I can’t get out of bed.  I call the doctor to get a painkiller

12/22/03 – Another day passes and the back pain is no better, even with the pain killers

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