A blog about living with ulcerative colitis and healing a flare using integrative medicine
I was looking forward to not spending this Christmas in the hospital like I did last year, but I woke up on Christmas Eve afternoon with a fever of 104°F, and my modest vision was canceled. My family drove me to the hospital, and upon arrival, my blood pressure was in the low 60s and my heart rate was at 150 – bad numbers. I was admitted into the ICU after getting Tylenol, IV fluids, a blood transfusion, antibiotics…the works. They ran tests on my blood, stool, and urine, and I got a CT scan and an x-ray. Like the other two times this year that I went to the ER, everything came back negative. Go figure, but my GI doctor and herbalist both think it was an infection, and I agree.
On Christmas day I was moved from the ICU to a regular room, where I stayed for one night. Since c. diff had come back negative, I shared a room for the first time, but at least my roommate didn’t use the bathroom once while I was there (something to do with what was ailing her), so the bathroom was always free. But I must remind myself, and you, that I wasn’t in the hospital for colitis symptoms, but rather the fever and low blood pressure. My colitis symptoms only acted up slightly.
On the day after Christmas, my GI doctor came in to speak with me. This is when he said that he suspected that I had been septic, and he pushed for 6MP once more. At this point, I was pretty much in agreement despite physically feeling fine once again, but I mentioned that there was one more supplement on the menu for me to try. He asked me to email him soon with my plan, which I did today, after emailing my herbalist about everything. I let my herbalist know what happened, and that I felt that 6MP was the right route at this time, and he agreed, but wants me to take this supplement – Candex – for two weeks before starting 6MP, to get rid of any potential fungal infection before starting an immune-suppressor. I’m not taking it to try to avoid 6MP, but to prepare me for it. So I started Candex yesterday and will start 6MP in two weeks, and this is the plan I emailed to my GI doctor.
Now I will just cross my fingers that 6MP works as well as it did three years ago. I will continue with the herbs, supplements, and diet while on it, and my herbalist said he’d modify my herbs to protect my liver from any harm 6MP could cause it. I guess I’m at peace with starting 6MP; this last trip to the hospital was kind of the last straw, and it would be pretty awesome if my symptoms finally went away and stayed away. I do see 6MP as temporary; for one thing, I don’t have any faith that it will continue to work for the rest of my life, but also, I’m worried of the long term effects of being on it long term. Hopefully it can help get me in remission for long enough that I can eventually wean myself off of it.
But I shouldn’t get ahead of myself! For now, let’s just hope that it works. I’ll continue to take things day-by-day for awhile.
See you in 2013….