Saturday, January 17, 2015

If I die, you guys can have my blog.

So, I've been fairly busy playing a doctor the past few weeks.  And a specialist at that.  Put some initials behind my name (and pay me lots of money) because it's exhausting.

With considerable help from Mr. DayInTheLife, I've diagnosed myself with BPPV.  (And "they" named it that to f*ck with people who have trouble pronouncing things - which may or may not be a symptom of the actual condition.  Damn it).  Or I may have had a stroke, or I may have Meniere's disease.  (When you self-diagnose it's a crap shoot.  But, it turns out when you pay lots of money to specialists it's a crap shoot, too.)

Regardless, I've decided to write it all down.  If I am having a stroke this will be the first chapter of my yet untitled novel about my life after stroke.  And if I am not having a stroke, this will just be another gratuitous blog post about nothing.

So, I woke up a few weeks ago and immediately face-planted into my dresser.  This was quite unexpected and kind of unsettling.  It may come as a surprise that I don't usually do this.  I am quite clumsy, but I can normally maintain some semblance of balance (when not totally inebriated - which only happens at Christmas parties and other times when I invariably need to make a good impression). 

If you've never experienced vertigo, it feels a little like being on a treadmill (presumably without the purported health benefits).  I continued to experience dizziness (minus the blonde) and vomited immediately after drinking a cup of coffee (boo, hiss).  I will spare you the medical minute by minute but I ended up at my doctor the next day.

It was determined (after a full check-up during which - thankfully - I did not have to remove my clothes and don one of those attractive gowns that don't fully close) that I had excessive wax build-up in my ears which may or may not be causing a feeling of imbalance.  Sexy, I know.  I had my ears plunged but alas I had wax directly on my ear drum and I was referred to an ENT.

I guess I should have said this may be more information than you will ever want to know about me.  But, since my stats show that I am the only person reading this blog I figure I am quite safe exposing myself to myself.

I went to an ENT this past week.  He vacuumed my ear with the world's tiniest vacuum. 

(Photo courtesty:  No, it didn't look like this dog, "Milly" whose photo came up when I Googled 'world's tiniest vacuum.'  But, I kinda wish it had?
Then he gave me a hearing test.  If you've never had a hearing test at the ENT, here's the thing about it:  It makes you feel totally hard of hearing.  And just a little nuts.

So, you are in a sound proof room with a headset on.  I'm not sure why, but this kind of made me feel like Buzz Lightyear.  Then, you have to raise your hand when you hear a sound. 

What they don't tell you is that the sounds are not going to be like your kid calling you from upstairs.  They are going to be sounds that only dogs (like Milly) can hear.  So, it kind of turns into a Rorschach test for hearing.  First if you're like me, you get incredibly distracted waiting for the test to start.  Then, when it starts you immediately second guess yourself as to whether or not what you heard was a sound.  Then, you begin to think you heard a sound when in fact there was no sound.  Then you begin to think you are going completely mad.  And deaf.  It was almost as disarming as the vertigo itself.

After I convinced myself that I was totally deaf and that was the root of my fact-planting, it was discovered (thankfully) that I have hearing within the normal range.  (Except for hearing hubby and my kids which I rarely do.)

So, approximately one and half weeks after vertigo, I am still unbalanced (mentally and physically) and experiencing dizziness.  The experts have charged me $173, removed the wax covering my ear drum, pronounced me "hearing", and told me they are not sure what caused my vertigo, they are not sure if it will reoccur, they are not sure if it will subside, and to take two aspirins and come back in a week if I do not feel better.

Hubby and Google thankfully have been much more helpful.  It seems I have something called BPPV although without further testing a brain tumor, stroke, and Meniere's Disease cannot be ruled out.  Hubby is working on constructing a homemade MRI machine as I type. 

I'm not worried.  I have four more days to feel better before I need to consult another "specialist." 

And, since I am so good at this, if you need a diagnosis, or hell, a prescription, give me a call.  I'm currently accepting new patients. 


jamiew said...

so did i ever tell you about the time my monster-in-law experienced vertigo during one of our visits?
i bet milly would have have licked the wax out of your ears for free.

Monica said...

I shudder at any comparison between me and the monster in law. I also (kinda) shudder at milly licking me. although, if I had to pick - I'd pick milly licking me.

Nomads By Nature said...

It's great to see you post again, but not so great about the face plant or underlying reasons. You are much more medically qualified than I am, but in my humble opinion, I say: tequila 2x/day and feet up. I mean, it can't hurt to try, right? Hope your hub-homemade MMR is up and running soon.

Monica said...

@nomads by nature - I love your thinking. I am saving a lot of money because I constantly feel like I've had tequila and feet up!

Sally said...

Yikes!!! Vertigo....sounds awful! Hope you are feeling better!
I'm so relieved to know I now have a doctor friend! The next time I have any symptoms I know who to call!

Monica said...

@sally - if you call now, you *might* not have to wait six months (or until you are no longer having symptoms) for an appointment. ;o)

Megly Mc said...

It's wrong that I'm slightly jealous that your ears are so much cleaner than mine, now, isn't it? When my neck gets out of wack, I have dizziness, which is rather embarrassing, because I've literally stood up and then spun out, falling against people or walls. It's not exactly helping my "I don't drink, I swear" claims. *sigh*

Monica said...

@Megly Mc - two things - be jealous. my ears are so clean, you could eat off them. but, then I'd have to write a menu and I'm probably not going to post again for another year, so screw that idea. number 2: the "I don't drink" thing is terrifying me. I have this fear that I am going to get pulled over before this thing is resolved. I WILL go directly to jail, right? so, my next post might be *letter from a texas jail.* I can only hope my birthday will be celebrated then for posterity?