Friday, February 17, 2012

Almost Normal

I've just hired myself as personal physician for a lot of money. I'm feeling much better and have decided to ignore my oncologist's most recent recommendations and follow my own intuitive advice. Don't worry--I'm not doing anything crazy.

I've quit taking tacrolimus altogether, as well as the voriconozole which I was put on for fungus protection while taking the tac. My doctor told me to continue with it, that it can't hurt, unless you count visual hallucinations.

Two more big doctor complaints and then I'll shut up. A year ago, I went to a psychiatrist--the prescribing kind, not the therapy kind--and he told me to remain on a low dose of Celexa (an anti-depressant), but that if I needed a little more juice, I could try taking an Ativan or a half of one. He also said I could call him at anytime and discuss the situation. These few weeks have been trying, to say the least, and I have popped a few Ativan, maybe 3 a week. On Tuesday, I called my pharmacologist and left a message about how I was medicating myself and if he had any thoughts or concerns. I guess I should have said I was about to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge because he still hasn't called me back. I haven't taken an Ativan since Monday.

The other doctor who's raising my blood pressure is the liver specialist I went to see in the Fall who recommended a liver biopsy, as well as to stop taking my cholesterol medication because it affects the liver. I saw my internist last week (she's fabulous) and she wants me to go back on a similar drug, Zetia. She called the liver doctor 4 times and got no response. I sent Ms. Liver an email on Tuesday, to which she has not responded. I told my internist to write the new prescription.

I'm not advocating ignoring doctors' advice, You must, however ask many questions and raise doubts when you have them. This is difficult to do when you're ill and relying on the expertise of someone who's been trained to know more than you.

Medice, cura te ipsum!


Sue said...

Plain and simple - you are getting bad medical care. I'm glad that you have a great internist. That March appt at Sloan Kettering can't come soon enough!

Ronni Gordon said...

Wow, I cannot believe all the bad "care" you are receiving. Thank goodness for your internist and the March 1 appointment. And thank goodness you have been able to figure out what to do. As you said, imagine all the people who are too ill or otherwise poorly equipped to deal with bad medical care.

Girl With The Swirl said...

Wow. I'm reading through your blog and have to say I am thoroughly in awe of you. Your posts are great and give humor, hope and the truth the what it's like to go through this. I'm am in remission for AML, just had my fourth (last round) a month ago. Idarubicin, chemo. Keep up the posts. Your journey means something.