Friday, November 11, 2016

CF Clinic

Here's a quick recap of my appointment yesterday.

I started feeling a cold, extra tingly cough coming on Monday that slowly increased throughout the week. I was worried about what that might show for my lung function because my lungs were getting tight. And now this morning I'm feeling worse than I did yesterday, and I'm really looking forward to the weekend to relax, shake extra, and maybe even get in a nap.

I got to my appointment about ten minutes early, but didn't get called back to a room until about half an hour after my appointment time. Oh well, I had time to scroll through FB and relax after the long drive. The took me back to get my weight (134.9lbs) and then to the room. The people who cleaned it were just walking out and the cleaner smell was SO strong. They asked if I wanted to wait in the waiting room for 5 more minutes while it aired out and I definitely said yes. So, five minutes later she brought me back to the room and it was much better. Someone came in to do my vitals (100% O2 level and blood pressure was fine). Then came the PFTs...

I always get a little bit nervous before doing them because it's basically the whole reason I'm there. It guides the rest of my appointment and tells how my lungs are holding up. My last visit was very disappointing when I had a huge drop and was down to 81%. I was hoping to be a few points higher than that today because I had been feeling excellent until this week, so I was worried that my tight lungs would skew the results. My first blow was pretty good, and when I looked at the screen I saw 86%! I said, "Yes!" and then coughed my brains out for a little bit. Once I got everything out, I did the test again and got an 83...not too bad, but I was getting tired and tight. I coughed a bit more until I felt clear again, then went for a third test. Same result - 83. I could tell the last two were lower because of the way I was feeling, so thankfully they took the first test as my best one. :)

So even with this cold beginning, my lung function has gone up at least 5% over the last couple months. I am very happy with that. I think the combination of being healthier, doing all of my treatments, and joining my running group has definitely contributed to that increase. I'm a little worried I'm going to lose a bit of it by the way I'm feeling this morning, but hopefully I'll fight this nasty bug off soon.

Thankfully, I'm at a very healthy weight so I have some back up pounds to help me get over this cold. As a person with CF, it's always been very hard for me to gain weight, and it's always come off very easily, which was not fun! My body is going to be working extra hard over the next few days to fight this cold, which burns more energy and calories. So I'm glad and lucky to have that extra weight, so that if I did lose a few pounds, I'm still within a healthy range. The unfortunate part of being at the heaviest weight I've ever been is my belly. Oh the dreaded CF belly.....I posted about it several years ago when I thought I was at my highest weight (about ten pounds lighter than I am today - thanks Kalydeco). It's very common in the CF community to have a belly. It's the way our bodies are built and I don't think people who are not familiar with CF understand it. Yes, I look pregnant, but it's all CF belly. That's where I gain my weight (and in my face) and I also have a distended belly because of my digestion issues. CF patients frequently have bowel/digestion issues, extra gas and bloating which all shows in that area....just an extra lovely perk of the disease. So for those of you who keep looking at me funny...please stop. :)

Overall, I had a great appointment. The doctor was very please with my increase in weight and lung function. She wants me to up my treatments to help kick this cold or whatever is developing. Hopefully it'll disappear by next weekend when I'm running in the Turkey Trot! I'll go back in January for a follow-up (she said unless the weather is bad, then we can wait til February).

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