Friday, March 21, 2014

My Pulmonary Cocktail

My kit.
  • White boxes: Antibiotic mouthwash that you drink. 
  • White plastic tube: How I measure my breath to know how much medication to take.
  • Blue Inhaler: Rescue Inhaler, level two for really bad asthma attacks
  • Green Inhaler: Rescue Inhaler, level one.
  • Red Inhaler: Regular twice daily medication.
  • Blue/clear plastic tube: A device for taking the Rescue inhaler, level two.
  • The large pill container: Prednisone for really bad asthma attacks
  • The small pill container: antibiotics for two weeks for really bad asthma attacks
  • The chart paper under everything is where I record my daily breathing history. I measure my breathing twice a day.
My voice: The doctor thinks my voice (that went missing three weeks ago) is gone due to a fungus growing on my vocal cords. The reason, he believes, is that one of my asthma inhalers contains a steroid that suppresses my immune system's efficiency in my respiratory tract allowing the fungus to grow. So now I go off my asthma medication until my breathing gets difficult and then I go back on it and hope that my voice is healed. 

I have to gargle with the antibiotic (and swallow) four times a day for a month. I have six bottles of the stuff. My doc knows another person who has been swinging off and on her inhalers for twenty years as her voice too, is affected. So I hear chronic and think of Joseph Heller. We are not amused.

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