Wednesday, October 19, 2016

So, I was wrong...

Turns out I know nothing about anything health-wise, as I got a call from my doctor this morning that the breath test results came back positive for the small intestine bacterial overgrowth!  Who knew?  The good news is that this pretty much explains away any of the slightly odd test results I've gotten.  It seems like the inflammation, and most likely the slightly iffy iron result and the one slightly off test among all of the other negative Celiac tests, could be a result of this issue.  So, two weeks of antibiotics and it should be cleared up.  From what I've read it does tend to come back, though I have no idea how I'll know that for sure since I didn't really have any symptoms in the first place.  This was really just an accidental finding, courtesy of the endoscopy to explore my reflux, which at this point I'm not even sure is reflux.  It's definitely something called globus, which may be caused by stress, reflux, or a handful of other things.

So, at this point I get to take an antibiotic for two weeks.  After that, depending on what my doctor tells me, I may give my body a week or so to get back to normal and see what that feels like.  After that I may try to go off one of my reflux medicines, the proton-pump inhibitor.  I'm thinking that might even be the cause of this issue, as most of the causes don't seem to apply to me, but "low stomach acid" could.  If my reflux really isn't reflux (or isn't as bad as it seemed), perhaps the lack of stomach acid led to the bacterial issue.  In any event, it's not ideal to be on it long-term anyway, so I need to give it another try.  I'm also thinking I may want to try a probiotic to keep the bacteria in check long-term.  They're not cheap, but it may be worth it.  And hopefully once I know how my body should feel, if the SIBO comes back, at least I might have a chance to know if something has changed.

The good news is that I don't have Celiac Disease at this point.  My genetic testing is still being processed and could be a couple weeks.  At this point it doesn't really mean anything, but it'll be good to know if I have a real risk of developing Celiac Disease down the road, or if there's nearly zero chance.  Like I've said previously, given Jacob's diagnosis I am guessing it will be positive, but if it's not, that definitely makes me wonder where his came from.  In the back of my mind (courtesy of an allergy theory of a friend of mine), I can't help but wonder if the antibiotics he took immediately following his birth could have messed with his immune system a bit.  They were necessary, mind you, but I wonder.

So, what's next?  Allergy shots.  They're long overdue and could have a lot of upside.  I got tested five years ago, but put shots off because there was no sense having nine months of shots that weren't helping me, just because they can't risk upping the dose during pregnancy.  So I held off until after Carter was born, but at that point we started a long series of other health issues, from Jacob's behavior and Celiac diagnosis, to Carter's milk protein, reflux, and rice intolerance issues.  I feel like we've been dealing with one thing or another for so long, and I really do need to do it now.  For one, my allergies are really annoying.  Second, it could potentially help my smell and taste issues.  Third, for all I know the constant drainage is causing the globus.  I have great insurance coverage for it, so there's really no reason not to do it.  Perhaps I will move along to chiropractic work or acupuncture after that. 

Being a parent is hard.  It often means putting your own wants and needs on hold to take care of your kids.  But eventually you get to a point where it's as important to take care of yourself so you can take care of them.  I think it's also important to set an example of taking care of yourself and not ignoring health problems, so kids know it's okay to do what it takes to be healthy.  It takes time and money, so it's not always easy, but the upside is huge.  We'll see how it plays out, but I'm happy to finally be making some progress.

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