This week my focus on was healing through medicine.
This meant making (and keeping!) a series of appointments for tests, follow ups, check ups etc.
First and foremost, I had a standing follow up appointment to uphold at King Edward memorial hospital. This was the hospital I presented at when I first started showing signs of miscarriage. That evening I underwent blood tests as well as several ultra sound scans; the results of which were inconclusive. My bloods indicated that the pregnancy was not viable (the amount of HcG being measured was not as high as expected for the stage of pregnancy I was at. I was 7/8 weeks but not measuring beyond 3). They were not able to see a full gestational sac in my womb, nor were they able to get a clear visual on my left fallopian tube via ultra sound. My case was labelled as a 'pregnancy of unidentified location' - meaning it could be ectopic, or it might not be.
The risk of an out of uterine pregnancy meant that I was required to check in with the ED at the hospital every week for the next 4-5 weeks where I would have my blood drawn and my HcG levels monitored. If they continued to show a steady decline, no surgical intervention would be required. If they levelled or spiked, I would be taken into surgery.
I dutifully attended every single follow up appointment, had my blood drawn, and thankfully saw my HCG levels begin to drop. From 800, to 400, to 100 and then after yesterday's final bloods; below 10. We were given the all clear this weekend.I didn't have to come back anymore. After my next menstrual cycle was complete, we could try again if we so wished.
It also signalled an end to the cocktail of hormones that had consumed me for the last few weeks. While the dust settles on my reproductive system, I may experience some hormonal ups and downs, but nothing like the last few weeks. Thank god.
I actually high-fived my favourite midwife on the way out at yesterday's appointment. It seemed an odd thing to be celebrating the complete end of this missed pregnancy, but 4 weeks of drawn out heartache and testing was no easy feat for me, especially since before going into this whole saga, I had a very real phobia of needles! So that's one medical goal, done and dusted.
I also had a few extra viles of blood drawn at the request of my GP to try and put a finger on lingering gastro-intestinal issues I have had for years. He screened for general inflammation, white blood cell count and coeliac disease.
Thankfully, all of these tests returned a normal healthy result. No cancer, and I can still eat pasta for another few weeks at least!
The next step in the investigation is a fun little procedure known as a colonoscopy. I'll spare you the gory details, but as part of my focus on healing through medicine - this week I picked up the phone and followed through on my referral. I have booked the procedure for February and look forward to having some answers about what is going on with my long suffering guts, and helping them heal.
Moving from there, during an appointment this week I asked my GP to top up my vaccination records. I only spewed once after receiving the flu shot, which was all that was needed on that front.
On Monday I booked a follow up appointment with my dentist who was able to confirm that my dry socket treatment from an earlier tooth extraction was working nicely. While I was there, I made sure to book in the remainder of the compressive dental work I need to have done in the next few months. My next round in the chair will be in February after this latest assault has healed.
This week I also began to tackle my gum disease seriously. Inflammation and infection of the gums can cause all matter of inflammation in the body. It can wreck havoc on the circulatory system and cause problems with fertility and in pregnancy. This is a huge red flag. I've had gum disease for years. This week I've begun to spend as much time gently brushing my guns as I do my teeth. Moving forward (and once my extraction site has healed completely) I intend to continue the process of oil pulling.
There are still a few list items outstanding from my week of healing through medicine;
I need to book a Pap smear.
I need to return to Pathology to have my rubella immunology tested.
I need to have a complete bone and jaw x-Ray done.
I need to request my GP test my thyroid for abnormal function.
Next weeks focus is marked as ' healing through supplementation', which shouldn't be a mammoth task - so I intend to roll over the last of my medical to-do's into next weeks healing project. Until then..