Monday, January 14, 2013

Medical Update - More Good News

My hematologist scheduled my follow up CT Scan (Angio Chest) for today to check whether the pulmonary emboli in my lungs had been significantly reduced in size or maybe even dissolved. This would allow him to contact my orthopedic surgeon to finally schedule reconstructive surgery for my ankle.


My visit to the Huntsville Imaging Center started with the nurse setting an IV with saline solution that would allow them to push contrast solution for one of the CT scan images. I was in and out pretty quickly. They took three chest images, one before the contrast solution was added to my blood stream, one immediately following the addition of the contrast solution and another image after.

I waited for less than 30 minutes when the nurse came into the waiting room to let me know that my lungs were clear, no signs of pulmonary embolism. Success!!! I immediately called the hematologist so he could contact the surgeon to schedule my ankle surgery. I finally received the callback from my hematologist, letting me know that he would call the surgeon to schedule my surgery.

Hopefully, I will be able to get my surgery scheduled before the end of this month. I will need to start injections of blood thinners for a few days of surgery before ceasing blood thinners a day before surgery. Due to my current history, I will have to be admitted to the hospital for a couple of days during and after surgery. They will also implant a filter into my main vein to prevent potential blood clots from traveling to my heart, lungs and brain. This filter will be temporary and it will be removed as soon as my INR levels have been raised again to acceptable levels following surgery.

I should be able to start rehabbing my ankle as soon as the cast gets removed, about 6 or so weeks after ankle surgery. This will be physical therapy only while I am in a boot, but it is so much more than I am able to do now. It has been 2 months since I've done any aerobic activity and I am rearing to start my recovery.

Although I had changed to a pescetarian diet about 2 months ago to lower my LDL cholesterol, it appears my complete lack of physical activity has countered this effort and my LDL level have almost doubled over the same time period. While this is a little worrisome to me, I am not willing to threw in the towel by taking a prescription drug (statin). I will make further changes to my diet (significantly reducing sugar and saturated fats) and recheck my cholesterol again. In the end, I don't think it makes sense to even consider taking prescriptions drugs to lower my LDL until I've actually had a chance to add physical activities back into my daily routine to see if that changes anything. My daily routine and diet is completely out of whack right now. Hopefully, getting back to normal after surgery will help me make the appropriate changes to my lifestyle to get my cholesterol back in check.

All in all, things are really looking up:-)

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