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Author Topic: Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year  (Read 916 times)

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Offline littlefire

  • Member
  • Posts: 36
Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year
« on: December 06, 2007, 01:53:03 AM »
Hi everyone

Finally I had the guts to sign up to the new forums. Some of you might remember me from the old forums. Well, I am delurking again and feeling great today so I thought I'd post something and tell everyone I'm still around :)

But first, let me tell you what happened in my life over the last year.

A year or so ago I was doing fine. Still not on HAART because my numbers were very favorable, and I had no other diseases of any kind. In February of 2007 I ate a hamburger that landed me in hospital with food poisoning (that in itself is a very long story and one I don't think anyone here would be interested in, but suffice it to say that if it weren't for my friends, I would not be here today - God bless them all!) I went home after a week of hospitalization. At that stage my mom was here, and I was doing fine so I decided to go home with her. She lives in another town, about 500 km from where I live and work.

The trip went well but towards the end I started feeling ill again. It progressed to a point where I was vomiting uncontrollably and I remember that it felt like I was in a trance - everything was surreal like in a dream. After that I don't remember much, so the rest of the story is based on what she told me. She consulted an internist who lives next door to her, and he recommended that they take me to hospital. During that night both my lungs collapsed due to fluids building up around them, and they had to put in underwater drains to drain off the fluid, heart monitors, ventilators, they had to sedate me (I'm strong minded and don't trust doctors) the whole shebang. And obviously then I was moved to ICU.

I woke up 16 days later. The doctors told me that I contracted a multidrug resistant strain of Staphylococcus, and that out of 14 antibiotics they found one that worked. At that stage I looked like a blown up balloon, I had these pipes coming out of my lungs through my ribs and it was overall a very ugly picture. [ Added after the fact - remind me one day to tell you about my "out of body" experience! ]

I recovered steadily and went home after two more weeks, and stayed with my mom for another 3 months before I came back home and started working again on the 1st of June. The doctors that took care of me during the second hospitalization however suggested that I go on antiretrovirals as soon as possible, because my CD4 count then was just 114. So I did that. My numbers improved beyond expectation, 3 months ago it was 564 CD4 with a VL of 112.

The side effects are manageable I guess. But keeping to dosing times was a problem for me. So my original doctor has now put me on a prescription that involves swallowing pills only once a day - much better, the side effects are comparable and I haven't missed any doses or took them 1 or 2 hours too late like on the previous regimen.

I went for bloodwork on Tuesday (on my 32nd birthday!) so I'll have those results soon, and will keep you updated with my progress.

I'm happy to see everyone here is doing fine. I probably won't be back until new year - family Christmas gathering is to blame - but to those who celebrate Christmas I hope you have a wonderful time and if you're driving please do so safely.

Yours,
LF

PS: I left out several key parts of the story but I don't have a lot of time right now, I'll fill in later if anyone has any questions :)

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2007, 07:39:48 AM »
Hi Littlefire! I remember you - it's good to see you again and I'm glad you re-joined us. :)

It sounds as though you've had an absolutely ghastly time of it since we last heard from you. Did you pick up the MRS staph infection when you were in hospital with food poisoning? Unfortunately, hospitals can be dangerous like that.  >:(

I'm glad to hear it all had a happy ending for you. Now don't be such a stranger! ;)

Welcome back hugs,
Ann
xxx
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline littlefire

  • Member
  • Posts: 36
Re: Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2007, 11:23:43 AM »
Hello Ann! *HUGS*

Yes indeed I think I got the MRSA from the first hospital. I spoke to several people after getting back to work who told me horrible stories of people they know who got MRSA from the same hospital. But when I fell ill the first time, I went into a coma at my home and my friends found me there. Two of them (my two best best friends) know I'm positive and my HIV doctor lives next to them, so they took me to their house first and after the doctor saw me they took me to hospital. That is why I'm so grateful for having such good friends. It's an amazing convergence of circumstance really, if you stop to think about it. I was indeed extremely lucky.

The funny thing is - there's a very good hospital just 200 meters from my house and if I was taken there in stead, the MRSA probably wouldn't have happened. But I think my friends panicked when they saw me and with my doctor next to them all they could think of was to get me to him as soon as possible. That said, all the hospital staff were absolutely amazing, at both hospitals, and never once did I feel like I was being treated different because I'm positive - although they all knew about my status.

I'll try my best to check in regularly (I always do, but don't always have something to say :) ). Keep well!

LF

Offline Robert

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  • Posts: 2,639
Re: Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2007, 11:34:52 AM »
Hi littlefire...

It's indeed good to hear from you again.   I'm like Anne.  I never forget a "face" (well, hardly, ever...ok well sometimes, maybe.....oh to tell the truth, I can't remember sh% %, but that's ok).

I bet you're glad this year is over.  Next year just has to be better.

By the way, that's why I don't like hospitals.  People get sick and die at hospitals.  Not a good scene.

robert
..........

Offline heartforyou

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,102
  • I must be a survivor in many ways...
Re: Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2007, 06:59:07 PM »
good to see you back

hey, I am very interested in yoour "out of body" experience.. so fire ahead...

hermie
Diagnosed in 1987 and still kicking
Viread, Kivexa (Epzicom),Viramune once daily

Happiness is the freedom of breathing fresh air every day.

Offline emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,267
Re: Hi all! I am back aka what happened over the last year
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2007, 07:07:15 PM »
Littlefire

I hadn't a clue about you until today!

What an incredible year you've lived. Glad to read how you beat the bad beef experience and the nasty MRSA. Sounds like a super-hero comic, doesn't it?

Have a great holiday.

Em

 


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