ringing in the one week countdown until abdominal pain may start to subside

CW: medical-related post

It's 25 minutes until midnight. Monday night. And that means it will be Tuesday, and that means one week until next Tuesday, when I have my Urology appt (yes, the letter in the mail confirmed my ACTUAL appt time/date, so I need not worry about a mix up of scheduling, as I was concerned about with the previous letter showing me the previous time/date - which had been changed).

Ideally, after the Urology appt, I will be prescribed some sort of antibiotic(s), and be able to "flush out" the viral infection (or whatever) that showed up on the CT scan. Whatever it is, it is still giving me lower-left abdominal pain (bladder), as well as lower-right abdominal pain (possibly affecting the lower-right kidney, which had showed scar tissue on the CT scan, as well). Sad face.

Regardless, this (whatever it is) will not go away on it's own, so whatever needs to be done to remedy the situation, I'm ready to "nip it in the bud", and get rid of it.

It'd be a nice change to NOT have abdominal pain for once, after experiencing it nearly non-stop for 2+ months now. Awkward, indeed.

Then, on that Thursday, I have a follow-up appt with my PCP, which has been scheduled for that date for over six months now. I will address a possible steroid shot (if needed/possible) to address the (now confirmed) minor arthritis occurring in my lower-right back. Inititally (for years, actually) I had thought it was a muscle in the lower-right back that just kept re-injuring itself, usually when the temps dropped to single-digits and I would be cold as fuck outside, and start to shiver - tightening the muscles, and then causing me to lack movement until I had to go to Urgent Care or the ER for a muscle relaxer shot. Perhaps a steroid shot (yearly) could fix that, and this time get the whole thing RIGHT, and know that it is an arthritis diagnosis, and not a muscle re-injury.

I will also make the PCP aware of the viral infection I had several months back, that I will not go into detail about here, because I already wrote at length about it during that time, and it's all cleared up, I feel better, and the antibiotics worked wonders :)

Then, to round out the medical BS for 2022 (hopefully, fingers friggin' crossed!) I will schedule a follow-up appt with a liver doc, to confirm that my Fatty Liver Diease (or the one-time early onset of it) has gone away, and that I am healthy in that department, which has been confirmed with A) a healthy ALT level, B) a healthy AST level, and C) a CT scan (the most recent one, where they just sort of took a look at ALL organs while examining the abdominal issue) - everything pointing towards a healthy liver. Most of which was brought about by weight loss and better diet, etc.

By the by, ALT and AST are basically measurements of liver triglycerides and enzymes, respectively. Essentially that is what they are. There's more nuance to it than that, I am sure.

And, also, to put a cherry atop the medical Sundae (which is a thing I wouldn't eat these days, honestly), I will make a follow-up appt with my gastroenterologist, which will be for an upper endoscopy, which is a thing I have to do every three years due to a previous Barrett's Esophagus diagnosis, which is basically a thinning of the inner esophagus, brought on by acid reflux, which can (rarely) occur with people who ignore (or just suffer through) prolonged bouts of bad heartburn, and don't do anything about it. Turns out that by making my diet 40% TUMS lozenges was NOT a wise idea in 2009, and until upchucking on a daily basis became an unavoidable thing, THAT is when I started to consult a gastroenterologist. They confirmed BE, and at one point there was a presence of Dysplasia (or, pre-cancerous cells), and that is why I must get an upper endoscopy every three years, even though the Dysplasia has been in remission for the last 5+ years. Hooray!

Incidentally, despite the 700+ words of medical strife, I actually DO feel healthy, and AM healthy. Just not "flawless", as it were.

Better than before, and always room for improvement :)

Onto more evening, as I hit publish one minute before the clock strikes 12:00!


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