Last week when I had the CT scan, as I was walking out of the hospital I had this oddly clear sense that what I was going to find out about was going to be located on my left side. Turns out I was right.
This is not to say I had a moment of psychic ability or anything like that. I’ve had problems with weird random pains on the left for some 15-odd years now, and I’m pretty sure this *thing* has been effecting me for at least that long. In 1997, I went through a series of tests after experiencing odd stabbing pains in the left abdominal area. Nothing came of it, but of course I now know that they were all the wrong tests; I suspect that if they had ordered a CT up front, they might have found it even that long ago. But this is just speculation.
My back problem, in which my trapezius muscle freezes up, is on the left. (I now know this is related to low potassium, caused by the nodule.) I’ve had ovarian cysts, on the left only, since the 1990s. I’m wondering if there is a relationship – aldosterone is a hormone, and hormones effect reproductive bits, so… maybe.
Pretty sure I can’t blame PA for my almost-legally-blind left eye though. Ah well.
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I’m still more relieved than disturbed by this diagnosis. Who wouldn’t be, after nine years of crappy doctors blaming my lifestyle (too much stress! not enough exercise! not the right kind of exercise!) for my hypertension. But yeah, I’m kind of pissed off too.
Pissed off at the doctors who failed to diagnose me correctly. There are many, but four in particular come to mind; one of them is a cardiologist and well-known USC faculty member. They are all getting a letter from me soon, explaining my diagnosis, what they missed, and what they need to do to ensure that this does not happen to any of their patients ever again.
Pissed off at the pharmaceutical companies and their damned expensive drugs. I have spent THOUSANDS of dollars in the past nine years on each latest, greatest thing to treat difficult hypertension. As a result, I have endured some pretty drastic side effects, and have at times successfully masked the underlying condition from being diagnosed.
Pissed off at people who faulted me for not keeping up with them one way or another. The former boss who didn’t understand why I couldn’t work round-the-clock like she did, couldn’t understand why I needed to do things like *eat* and *sleep*. Pissed off at everyone who made comments, even jokingly, about me being “out of shape” when I fell behind while hiking or bike riding or whatever. From the anecdotal evidence I’ve been able to gather in talking to other PA patients online, I have been downright energetic and athletic in comparison. Some people can’t even get the hell out of bed. The fact that I’ve done things like 18-mile hikes despite this condition makes me feel absolutely FIERCE – I mean that in a good way. Either I don’t have such an advanced case of it, or I’m tougher than all that. Or both.
And yeah, lastly, pissed off at myself, for even momentarily accepting the blame that all of these people put on me.