Friday, September 2, 2011

A Sharp Doctor.......

I saw Dr. Donna Sharpe with Duke Otolaryngology of Durham Wednesday and feel like I have hit a gold mine with this one. By the time I got there - I was so tired from hurting and feeling so bad for so long without knowing exactly what was going on that I got emotional.  She was wonderful. The first thing she told me was to never let anyone shoo-pshaw me when I'm in pain.  After doing a thorough examination (magnifying lenses) of my ears, she told me it wasn't in my ears and she felt it was somewhere in my throat.  She performed different types of examinations and then ran a scope through my nose into my throat and found the problem.  Thank you!!! The official diagnosis is: Nasopharyngitis with lymph tissue enlargement. Left Eustachian tube is obstructed and the ear pain is referred ear pain via the Glossopharyngeal Nerve. I know - lots of big words aren't there? She found two pus pockets about the size of the head of a Q-tip each and had already noted the swelling from the outside and said it was much worse inside.  She prescribed me two antibiotics and some heavy duty pain meds and wants me back in the office Monday.  I feel like a walking pill bottle but am so thankful for the pain meds even though they make me feel --- drugged. :-) We had a long talk about my lymphoma and she explained that yes - my immune system is compromised and then told me I should think of it as a "chronic condition".  One that requires me to get a lot of rest and keep the stress level down as much as possible.  She asked me who to send her report to and then asked if she could pull up my last PET scan from Duke.  When she got it and started reading it, she pointed out that there was a "hot spot" in my neck in the exact spot of the infection. I'm like - oh.  That when I come back Monday, if it hasn't improved significantly, she wants to do a biopsy.  Okay!! That came out of left field.  SO - that raises a few questions doesn't it?  To be honest, I hadn't even thought of my cancer except in the context of how bad I feel for a longer period of time with every "little" thing that has come my way lately. When I went for my check-up, they told me my numbers looked great.  It really never occurred to me my cancer could be causing this.  I also hadn't really thought a whole lot about it until I just started typing this entry.  I have been focused on taking the meds on schedule and trying to keep the pain under control but when I just typed it - it did feel a little strange.  I'm going to continue focusing on pain management and getting rid of the infection over the next two days and let Monday bring what it will. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you saw her! I thought it couldn't be an ear infection, but maybe something in your jaw like a sore tooth or something. I'm glad you pushed through and got an appointment quickly. I'm happy that she pinpointed the problem, that she took the time to listen, and has prescribed some relief. I'll hope the best for Monday. I love you.


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