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Sunday, August 8, 2010


Through a long complicated series of events, I've been forced back into thinking about Why. Why Janey has her issues. I got a skin infection and was put on a sulfa drug. From the minute I started taking it, I didn't feel good. After a few days, I knew HOW I didn't feel good---I felt like I did when I was taking the Aldomet, when I was 12 weeks pregnant with Janey and had a near fatal reaction. If I had been smart, I would have stopped taking the drug right when I realized that. But instead, I tried to do the right thing---I called my health plan and tried to explain how I was feeling and ask for a different medication. The nurse I talked to shut me down---basically said she was sure I had no reaction to the medication and I should keep taking it. And I did---right until after a dose I took last night sent my throat into a closing up feeling, and I wound up having an ambulance ride to the emergency room, where I had quite a fever, chills and blood tests showing my liver function was being compromised---AS WITH THE ALDOMET. And even then, the first doctor I saw said he was sure there was no connection---JUST LIKE a doctor said the day after the awful Aldomet reaction. Finally the second doctor did acknowledge what I had already read many places on the internet---that sulfa drugs often cause a fever reaction and coughing similar to mine, and I should stop taking it and not take sulfa drugs again.

I don't know if the Aldomet caused Janey's problems. I can never know for sure. But I think a lot about the day they were prescribed for me, when my blood pressure was rising fast early in the pregnancy. I saw some substitute doctor that day, and she was so casual---"Oh, Aldomet's the safest drug around, very good for pregnancy...." And I guess it often is, but my later research has shown it often causes horrible side effects, almost every one of which I experienced. That, and other experiences, like the neurologist who sort of off-handedly said Janey's MRI wasn't normal (while a further one said it was normal, and still, who knows?) and the recent few bad experiences with taking Janey to doctors, has left me with a distrust. Not of all doctors, and not of medicine in general, but of taking what doctors say as gospel. I'll never have that faith again. I need to always verify for myself.

And it comes back to WHY? The useless question. If I had gone to a big hospital for my medical care with Janey, rather than staying at the smaller clinic where I was comfortable, if when Janey's heartbeat started lowering to almost nothing, they had done an immediate C-section and the cord had not been strangling her, if I had not taken the Aldomet, if somehow my pregnancy was like the one with Freddy, healthy---would Janey be okay? Or should I think the other way---that it's a miracle she's here and as relatively intact as she is? Should I have gotten the message with William that my body is not cut out for pregnancies, and stopped there?

None of these questions have any answers, and I should not ask them. It doesn't do anyone any good. But I do need to keep a lesson in mind. I know my body. I know my kids. If something feels wrong, I need to respect that feeling. The consequences are possibly too much if you don't.

1 comment:

Kim said...

Geez it's hard to read your posts sometimes - but good too. You have come to many realizations that too me years to make. Good for you.