The Top10 Things You Should Do If You Test Positive For Alpha1

  • Have A List Of Questions When You See a Doctor About Your Alpha1(If you try to remember the questions you want to ask you may forget half of them)
  • Learn To Breathe Effectively
  • Limit Or Eliminate Your Alcohol Consumption
  • Don't Be Afraid To Be Proactive About Your Alpha1
  • Get Plenty Of Rest(You will likely have a higher oxygenation level)
  • Avoid Sick People(You have a lower immune system than most people)
  • Drink Plenty Of Water
  • Eat Healthy/Avoid Processed Food(Carbonated beverages)
  • Start A Careful Exercise Program/Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program(Your muscles will become more efficient so they won't use as much oxygen and if you have surgery you will likely recover quicker as well)
  • Stop Smoking

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Don't Blink!

I've been going to post some other things but, Sunday was definitely a day to not blink!! I have been having breathing difficulties off and on all summer long. I attributed most of it to fluctuating temps, hot weather and humidity. Everything came to a head early Sunday morning. I was going to wait till Urgent Care opened in Rice Lake. It became apparent at 5am that was not going to happen. I drove over to Rice Lake where I was treated and released from ER. I really thought I needed to be admitted. I went home and laid down and got up feeling even worse. My sister had told me "Kate, sometime you will have to be admitted to the hospital to treat a lung infection because the oral drugs won't work and put on IV meds. Most Alphas know when you are admitted to the hospital for an upper respiratory infection you either get better or you die." I always thought I would be on oxygen 24/7 when this happened. The first trip my oxygen was at 88% and the second trip after being put in a wheelchair at the was 82%. IIRC, at 85% oxygen you are typically placed on oxygen part time. When I returned to ER the second time I wasn't really fit to drive but, I made it! I knew time was of the essence!! I called ahead requesting a wheelchair meet me at my car. I also told them I was entering by the emergency entrance backwards so that we could get me into the wheelchair quicker. They asked what I would be driving so they could watch for me. They missed me for probably 30 seconds and then it was like music in motion. The new team...the dr. kept saying how glad he was I came back. "It's good you relised this wasn't a normal respiratory infection.". They hooked me up to oxygen right away! One of the nurses parked my car and tossed the keys on the counter. They took am arterial vein blood draw. Took a mobil chest xray. They had a hell of a time getting an IV set up. My veins kept collapsing and I asked the nurse if they were rolling and she said "No, they're collapsing." I kept reassuring her and trying to encourage her where she would have good luck. Explaining I do my own IV and some nurses have had even worse luck than them. They were all really scared I thought. At 11 am I was finally wheeled to a private room. On Monday at 4 pm I was finally released. I requested an medical excuse for the next day off and asked my boss for another vacation day today to recover. I've drank A LOT of water and can't begin to express my gratitude to be alive and recovering.

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