So last week I was travelling for work to Oakland. I was flying home on Wednesday afternoon and started to feel icky. By the time I got home I felt horrible, so I just got into bed and slept all night. I woke up in the morning with a horrible sore throat and stayed at home from work that day. By the afternoon I was pretty sure it wasn’t just a normal sore throat, so I decided to go to the doctor’s office and see about getting a prescription. They determined I didn’t have strep, but I probably did have something that needed antibiotics so they prescribed me something. I am allergic to A LOT of antibiotics, so finding something I am not allergic to is tricky. Well they gave me something and sent me home. I started to take it, and by the morning I was having lots of difficulty breathing and couldn’t swallow and was just in horrible pain. I called my doctor about my difficulty breathing and they said to get my butt to the emergency room.
My dad took me to the emergency room. While in the ER, they did some tests, did a CT scan, and did some more tests and determined that I needed to be admitted to the hospital. I had Epiglotittis; a pretty life threatening condition as it can cause you to stop getting air in my lungs. It is not something adults get, much less something healthy adults get. Basically, the flap that covers my trachea was swollen and could totally swell and close off my airway.
The doctors started me on some strong antibiotics to fight the infection and heavy steroids to help combat the swelling. After 3 nights in the hospital, the doctors were puzzled as to why I wasn’t feeling any better. My pain was manageable, but everything else just wasn’t going away. In fact, I thought it was getting worse. They did another CT scan and determined that the swelling had in fact increased. So they switched my antibiotics. More consults with some doctors determined to switch it to a 3rd antibiotic. I got my first dose of the 3rd antibiotic at 8pm, and by the morning I was feeling so much better. I still had trouble swallowing, but I could manage to eat something more substantial than soup or mashed potatoes.
Over the next 48 hours I felt better and better. So after 5 nights, they finally sent me home. My view from my hospital room.
I’m not over it, not by a long shot. I have 4 weeks of more antibiotics (which have to be given intravenously since they aren’t available in pill form). I have a PICC line in my arm for the next while until I am done with all the drugs. I can either go to the clinic every day and get them or they can set me up to administer them to myself at home. Then more tests to make sure everything is all cleared. Then at least a month after everything is all clear, I’ll have to go through a round of allergy tests to determine what my reactions to various antibiotics are. They aren’t 100% sure if my difficulty breathing was induced by allergies, the Epiglottitis, or a combination of the both. But lots of tests need to be done to make sure this doesn’t happen to me again.
While I was in the hospital, I had lots of visitors. Cooper loved coming to see me. As soon as he walked in my room, he wanted to have some jello and go look at the Flight For Life helicopter at the end of the hallway. Don’t worry – all the doctor’s agreed that it was perfectly safe to have him there. Kirk was a champ at taking care of the house, and my parents did so much to help Kirk with Cooper. I didn’t, for one minute, have to stress about making sure things got done outside of the hospital. I just had to worry about making sure I got better.
Health. What a funny thing. It’s something you really take for granted when you don’t have it.
It is so good to be at home with my family, and sleeping in my own bed.