About a week ago I made vague public mention that I was dealing with a new serious health issue. My exact words were, “I am the valedictorian of rare and unusual ailments and illnesses. – Processing. Research. Decisions. Treatment.”
In July I began experiencing fluctuating symptoms that would suggest that I had a urinary tract infection. Between July and October I saw my doctor three times about this and we couldn’t seem to properly get it treated. Three sets of full lab cultures have come back completely clean. I followed a course of treatment for a UTI as well as a yeast infection, just in case. Neither treatment worked and my symptoms continued to worsen. Certain activities and other outside elements seemed to make the symptoms unbearable. Other activities and outside elements seemed to, at times, ease the symptoms a bit. But still, I had no idea what was going on and when the symptoms are at their worst, I’m in a great deal of pain. In the “down there” area. NO ONE WANTS TO BE IN EXCRUCIATING PAIN IN THEIR “DOWN THERE” AREA.
Defeated, my doctor sent me to a Gynecological Urologist. Long story short: I’ve been diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis (IC). Which, wouldn’t you know it, is directly related to all of my back problems. Which were a result of Pelvic Wall Dysfunction. Apparently a great number of my other chronic health problems are actually an effect of this Interstitial Cystitis.
Upon receiving this diagnosis, I was sent home with many research materials as well as some time to process. My Urologist wanted me to understand what I was dealing with as well as have some time to decide how aggressively I’d like to treat the symptoms. IC is something you live with for life. There is no cure, only symptom management. However, when caught early and treated aggressively, there’s an exceptionally high chance of living symptom free for a very long time. So that’s exactly what I’ve decided to do. I’ve talked to my immediate family and friends and they all agree that attacking this full force now is the best course of action. Unfortunately what that means is that I’m going to be pumping my body full of oral medications, as well as once a week installations (cocktail of medications inserted directly into the bladder via catheter) for anywhere between two – six months depending on how my body responds to treatment.
Starting tomorrow morning.
Getting this diagnosis was initially a huge blow to me. I only just graduated from physical therapy for my SI Joint/Piriformis/Sciatica pain and I was so happy to feel like I was getting my life back. My back has been pain free for weeks and as such, my energy levels have been lifted drastically. So the thought of jumping into another aggressive, arduous treatment process is one of the most deflating things in the world to face right now. But I’ve had a week to process and talk about it. And yesterday I took a much needed mental health day to get myself feeling as zen as possible before diving into treatment. So I feel ready. And I’m positive. And I’m just going to take this one day at a time.