Cirrhosis Stage 4
On the 17th of June 2013, if asked, I would have said I was a fairly healthy 63 yr old woman dealing with Type II diabeties. My sugar counts were creeping up a bit and I was just put on insulin (had only been on pills for the last 20 or so years, not bad I thought.) My family Dr. sent me to a GI because he didn't like the counts of some regular Blood work I had done. I go see him and do more blood work then ultrasound then CAT scan then MRI. Four months later on the 18 of June he said you have Stage 4 Cirrhosis. Non-reversible. He said I am non symptomatic. That is about all I remember of that meeting. Oh yes, I am due for a colonoscopy. And he will do a scope test to check the veins in my stomach at the same time. Needless to say I was in shock. Called my family Dr. and got the same response from him and he did say it would be good to "have my house in order" both Dr's seemed to be big on orderly houses. So just how much time do I have?? I have to tell my children. So I call the GI and ask about symptoms again. So the nurse sets up an appointment 2 months away. To make a long story short I freak out and get in to see GI Dr. and he said I have time. He has patients that have had this for 10 Yrs. I am thinking so why do you tell me to get my house in order. But I let it ride. Said I will look like I am 9mos pregnant and may not know my own name before I am evaluated for transplant? What part of that conversation was better than anything I read on line. NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING. Oh I have to stop typing cause I am just getting more upset as I retell this..
So after ranting for a page. Why oh why couldn't the Dr. say
Ok you have Stage 4 Cirrhosis and it is not going to get better on it own.
The first thing we do is reduce salt intake, cut out aspirin. no smoking, drinking or fried foods. The only afore mentioned vice I have is fried foods. Really french fries. I can live without all the rest. By the way my Stage 4 is fatty liver. Not alcohol. Never have been much of a drinker. so back to what the Dr. could have said besides get your house in order (no I can not get past that one)
The longer you are symptom free the better you will feel.
So GI Dr, in future why not start with "here are a list of things you can do to help yourself".
There are more things but if you have read this far it is time to put this to rest. For now
What am I looking for:
Someone who knows how I feel.
Someone who wakes up and checks out the size of your ankles before you get out of bed. ( Just when do I advise GI Dr. of this symptom.)
Someone who is wondering when do I start looking for pants that have an elastic (Oh God, old lady pants from the 60'S) and tops that are plus size but please God not Maternity.
I have always been skinny. This is a big adjustment for me.
So really I need someone to RANT to about all this s__t. I think I am at the stage where I do need to share some of my thoughts, while I still have thoughts,
Thank you so much for enduring all these words. I can be funny sometimes and I do want to get to the point where I can laugh at myself about this. in a sick sort of Irish way..