holding on, holding out

I’m increasingly thinking I need to be inpatient, and I don’t say that lightly.  I spent yesterday, day two of the massive hypotension, sucking down juice all day and trying to lay with my feet up to keep my resting BP up.  Nope.  The only things that reliably bring it up are stress/anxiety and being up and moving around, both are temporary and the up and moving also jacks up my heart rate to my high POTSy levels.  So that’s no good.  Plus, I’m dizzy while I’m up.

The two days of juice have taken their toll on my stomach I think.  Well, that’s what my theory is for why I woke up this AM with stomach pain which quickly progressed to nausea.  Took a zofran.  An hour later, I was vomiting.  I swear, all zofran does for me is constipate.

The juice, white grape juice, is less acidic than gatorade, but it still is sharp on my stomach.  I am hoping two days of high acid in my stomach is what it was that set things off today…I’m pretty unhappy that I’m puking now too, on top of all this blood pressure crap.

My husband leaves tomorrow for his conference, which he is already planning to cut short since I’m so sick.  A good friend (out of state) is coming up to hang out with me while he’s gone.  I’m not accustomed to having company while I’m so sick, basically she’s going to have to minimally baby sit me (and possibly take me to the ER and watch my cats until my husband gets home) and I am not looking forward to that.  I had been hoping this would be more of a visit, but the last few days are not looking good.

So my husband’s coming back Sunday night, cutting his conference attendance short, which sucks.  But I’m glad.  Because this sucks too, and it’s scary, and the only reason I’m not pushing the doctors to admit me is that I don’t want to be in the hospital while he’s out of town.

I was supposed to check in with Neuro today, about the mirtazipine.  I’m sure they’re going to be unhappy that I discontinued it, but I really feel I had good reason to do so.  Of course, today’s nausea and vomiting doesn’t help my  case that without mirtazipine, I can at least tolerate a liquid diet.  😦  But up until today, I was doing much better OFF the mirtazipine than on, stomach-wise.

keeping cool

It’s hot here in the suburbs of Big Old Historic Northeastern City.  Bug sightings are common now and I’m reacting to every stray hair or unexpected touch on my skin with alarm….it only takes seeing one of those nasty centipedes to put me into a heightened bug paranoid state….I’ve seen three in the last week and a half, including one doing the backstroke in the bathroom sink!  The cat has taken to spending her evenings in the kitchen, parking her furry butt in front of the kitchen sink (properly, in front of the cabinet below the sink). It gives her a view of the back door, bathroom, and light colored kitchen floor, where she can chase down and gobble up any of these little nasties that try to scramble across the floor.  I watched her track and nail a mosquito a few nights ago.  She got much praise.

The warm weather brings not just bugs but migraines and a return to the super low blood pressures.  Yesterday morning my BP was 80/56.  Evening wasn’t much better, managed to get it up to 85/59.  The brain does not work well with such low blood pressure, so yesterday was a series of backtracking to retrieve things, redoings, and all around thwartiness.

I bought some more popsicle molds.  I had another set that I got a few years ago but they got used for coffee (mmmmmm) popsicles and they aren’t going to be much use for anything but that now.  These are for fruity creamy popsicles.  Very excited.  Especially since it is impossible to cook in this heat, so it’ll be nice to have some snacks.  Speaking of smoothies, managed to grab a few pictures.

Both super delicious and nice warm weather food. I’m still considering trying the coconut milk ice cream again.  I have pause for two reasons.  One:  high fat content, and that’s not good for gastric emptying.  Two:  I did try coconut milk ice cream treats last summer, they were these chocolate and nut coated things.  I think I was allergic to something in them, so I didn’t eat any more after the first try.  I’m not sure if what I reacted to was in the ice cream or in the coating.  For now, I’m doing ok with my blended low fat lactaid milk and ice.

photo of glass with a shake.

Strawberry banana

photo of glass with shake and straw.

Ginger peach

Peachy

Peach smoothie = super yummy.  I basically made a slightly less banana-y banana one and added two of those little cups of diced peaches you can buy at the store, plus a dash of ground ginger and a swirl of seedless strawberry puree.  I’d have taken a picture but it was too damned good to stop and snap a shot of.  Maybe the next time I make it, I’ll manage to take a picture before I chug it down.

The strawberry puree/sauce came out excellent.  I found that a fine wire mesh strainer was enough to take out the seeds, although I did buy some cheese cloth too in case the strainer didn’t catch them all.

Also on the menu this week is butternut squash soup (well strained of course).  Threw in some potatoes to give it a little body.  It’s not as good as the potato soup but then soup really does need to sit a day or so in the fridge to get to its best, I’ve found.

So yesterday I finally hit almost 1800 calories, for the first time in a few weeks.  I’m thrilled.  I know I’m still not getting a very nutritionally whole diet, but I think I’m doing a little better on the intake.  It’s a lot easier to do on the weekend.  I’ve been plotting out my food using an app for my iPhone and you can really see the weekends in terms of calories and weight.  I also bought a nice water pitcher that has a fruit infuser built in so I can make berry water at work. I do NOT drink enough hydrating liquids.  This I’ve known for a long time.  My husband says his brother’s the same way.  He once spoke to my husband about it, and it sounds exactly like me.  He says he just forgets to drink, then when he remembers that he hasn’t had anything to drink all day, he’s usually too busy to stop and go get something.

I would do juices and gatorade-type stuff except they absolutely kill my teeth.  Reflux has done a number on the enamel, which means they are porous and sensitive.  Even watered down, fruit juices mean I can barely stand to brush from the pain.  I drink them and ginger ale sparingly and with water or a ton of ice, and only through a straw.  Which leaves water.  But I do avoid it.  I don’t know why.  It’s largely psychological, habit, but also I do not experience thirst like other people I think.  People like my husband or sister, who both drink quite a bit of water, tell me that they get very thirsty if they go more than an hour or so without a drink.  Seriously?  I could go a day without anything to drink other than my morning coffee and if I didn’t remind myself to stop and get some damned fluids, I’d dehydrate myself right into a hypotensive episode.  WTF?  I can’t change whatever is causing that lack of thirst, but I can try to change the habit.  I decided that if I make water something that is more of a special drink, maybe I’d drink more because I do like my little rituals.  Hence the pitcher.

dyspatient has left the building

Done.  Done with the old job.  I wanted to leave in a blaze of triumphal glory.  Unfortunately, I left as I so often do.  Happy to be going, but limping along in pain to my car.  This time it was the abdomen.  I don’t whether to attribute it to the unwanted and ultimately poorly executed lunch date with my now ex-boss or the over-reaching over my desk to drop something in the recycling bin (employee saw me doing this and said “woah, hey, let me…no really, you’re going to hurt yourself” and yes, he may have been right).  It wasn’t a usual stomach/GI pain for me, so it may well have been the over reaching.  This is a problem for me.  I really really need to learn to stop doing it because with increasing frequency, I am hurting myself by bending this way and stretching that.  My mantra is “just because your body WILL go that way doesn’t mean it SHOULD”.  I had some inkling about this even when I was younger and healthier.  I once passed out at the start of a final exam as an undergrad after the test packet slid off my desk and under the seat in front of me.  It was one of those stadium seating style classrooms.  I leaned wayyyyyy down and forward and extended my Gumby arm under the seat in front of me, almost reaching it….oh just a little more and then….just as my hand closed on it, something went “ping” in my shoulder.  Oh dear.  I sat upright.  Oh no, oh, that wasn’t good.  I put my head down on the desk.  I tucked my legs up under me in the seat.  Finally, knowing that I was indeed going to pass out now, I made my way down the stairs (yeah I’m a fucking idiot), hugging the wall, to the front of the room, told the professor and her TA that I was sick and going in to the hall to pass out, which I then did but only after laying on the hall floor retching for a few minutes.  My passing out is never those delicate little lady faints.  Oh no.  It’s all sweaty and retchy and gassy (it’s like my intestines just say “EVACUATE!”).  Profanity laden prayers are not uncommon.  Even after I’m out,  I don’t have the decency to lay there like a good swooner, arm draped dramatically just waiting for a brocade couch to complete the scene.  No, I go stiff (“I nearly had to break your damned legs to get you off the toilet” my ex husband told me after finding me passed out in our little closet sized bathroom), my eyes roll up (“and you’ve got BIG EYES” a friend who witnessed this once told me), and I sometimes convulse a little.

While rationally, I know over reaching is a bad idea, I have not yet LEARNED it.  And so yesterday, I slunk out of work and to my super hot car, parked in the couple of inches of shade and waited for the AC to kick in before driving myself home to collapse on the couch.  Sort of an anti-climactic end to a rotten chapter of my life.

But it is done.  I am home for the heatwave, contemplating a mall trip, expecting lots of couch time and forced hydration – I really just cannot muster the thirst to drink my requisite volume of fluids – and looking forward to a massage on Monday, a visit with a friend, and a mani/pedi day (never had a pedicure before…getting my feet ready for open toe shoes to help with what I call “lobster foot”, more on that later).

For all of my chronic friends in the heatwave zone of the US (I believe right now that’s most of the 48 contiguous states), stay cool. Remember that you really don’t have to prove anything, and moreover, anything you think you might be proving by dashing around in a heatwave is likely to be undone by the passing out/feeling like pounded poop that will ensue after.

Danger!

It is unfortunate that often medical care leaves something to be desired.  This may not be everyone’s experience, but ask anyone with a chronic medical condition – especially someone with one of those difficult to diagnose things (yes, I’m talking about the truly weird ones but also stuff like MS or Lupus) – and you will hear at least one story of health care hijinx that will make your hair stand on end.

This Monday evening was not the worst treatment I’ve received in an ER.  No, that would be the time I passed out at home, had my (now ex) boyfriend pull me up by my arms while I was stiff on the floor after hitting my head off the wall, door, and dresser, and went in only to be treated like I was a drunk kid and not a grown up grad student who had stayed up too late studying, got dehydrated, hypoglycemic, and hypotensive all at once.

This Monday evening was the one after the worst one.  That is to say, it was bad and I have a history of bad, which conditions the response to subsequent bad.  Oh also, I was in the worst pain of my life.  I have only had pain like this immediately post-operatively and that pain was handled with PCA narcotics.  This pain, well, this pain was not from surgery.  It just came upon me.  And that is scary as hell.  This pain was so scary that I did go to the local ER despite really deeply not wanting to, and I did ask for narcotics despite really truly not liking them because they drop my BP lower than is remotely ok.  And I did question the doctor when he came in and declared that everything was normal on my CT, he’d ruled out diverticulitis, and that was the end of the diagnostic path.  “Um, so you saw my kidneys and everything and that all looked ok, right?”   “Oh, well, no, not with the contrast…that would make it hard for them to see that.  I mean, they might but it’s not likely.  We’d have to do an ultrasound for that and they don’t open for several hours.”

And it was at this point that I stopped being the nice, accommodating patient who didn’t freak out and demand a supervisor when I was literally mowed down by a moving too fast triage nurse in the waiting room and who didn’t demand that I get a nurse who wasn’t in LABOR (yes, you read  that right, my nurse was very very pregnant and was having visible difficulty even moving around herself).  I didn’t get surly when the doctor denied me IV fluids, despite a BP reading somewhere around 82/37.  No, I was committed to being a cooperative and good patient who was taking a team approach to this, my having to come to the ER to make sure I didn’t have a kidney stone, a rupturing something or another, or a dissecting aneurysm.  Because yes, the pain was that bad.  But when the doctor told me that he supposed they could do an ultrasound and a pelvic exam “to be complete”, then turned on his heel and stalked out of my room without me knowing if that meant “yes, I think I should do a pelvic exam and an ultrasound” or “I neither want to do nor think we need to do either of these but you clearly are being a pain in my ass so I will order them to humor you….and boy are you going to pay when  I do that pelvic exam*…” – I didn’t handle this well at all.  Oh did I mention I was drugged to the gills on narcotics, hypotensive, and probably hypoglycemic at this point?

Long story short, I’m making a complaint to the state department of public health about the hospital, to the state board about the doctor, and to the hospital.  I doubt the latter two will result in much.  The hospital one might.  We’ll see.  In the meantime, I saw my primary care, who recommended I make a formal complaint with the state.  He also noted that on my CT scan report, which the ER doctor said was “perfectly normal” and used as a large part of his basis for declaring me undiagnosable and therefore no longer worth treating, they had noted my uterus was normal.  That is very reassuring, especially since I had a hysterectomy.  On the plus side, I did get to listen as my primary care doctor called the radiology department and questioned this.  It was good to feel like someone was advocating for me.

Well, off to shower while gripping the wall so I don’t fall over.  My BP’s still shit.  71/55 last night.  I blame the narcotics, oh and the dehydration.   Then it’s off to the lab where they will have a horrible time getting a vein since the ER blew the good one with the IV port they put in.  Then off to the Neurologist to find out how effed up my hand is.  I will be mentioning the ER experience to him too.  I want the word out about this doctor.

* = yes, this does happen.  I’ve been a victim of it more than once, and at the ripe old age of 40 and as a sexual abuse survivor I simply refuse to subject myself to it again.  If a doctor says “I really think you need a pelvic exam” then that is one thing.  But if he is putting it out there “just to be complete”, that says to me that he does not want to do this and I am not going to have a non-specialist put his hands up all up in my privates “just to be complete”/a.k.a. “just to stop you from complaining”.

salt

I have always loved and craved salt.  For a while, when I was married to the ER doctor, I avoided salt.  He was a bit on the hypertensive side, so I had gotten in the habit of reducing or eliminating salt in recipes and we didn’t have table salt.   For some time after that relationship ended, I continued the reduced salt habit.  Recently though, I’ve been told by several doctors that I need more salt.  “Ok, well then, more salt it is!” I decided happily.

It is becoming clear though, especially on days when I can’t eat much, that I am not getting enough salt in through food alone.  “You should be taking salt pills” said the genetics guy, in reference to my POTS-like symptoms.  “Why aren’t you on salt pills?” asked the RN at my neurologist’s office when we were talking about my very low blood pressure and habit of passing out.

I’ve tried Florinef, but it made me super nauseous.  I’ve tried Midodrine, but it was recalled shortly after I began taking it.  I don’t know if it’s back out yet, it’s one of those drugs that the FDA recalled because, as I understand it, it’s too old (that’s a loaded statement, I know, but it’s my interpretation of what has happened with this and another drug I take, Levsin/hyoscyamine. In the case of hyoscyamine at least, the reason for pulling approval was that the drug was old enough that it hadn’t been tested under the newer FDA standards for efficacy…let me break that down:  it’s not that this drug which many people with IBS-D type symptoms take is dangerous, it’s that despite us and our doctors finding it to be a helpful and effective drug, the (generic) drug doesn’t make enough money for a drug company to have invested in testing its efficacy and so the FDA has pulled its approval.  I can still get Levsin, but because of the FDA action, I pay for it out of pocket, and ration my pills like they were gold).

And so I think I will try salt pills.  No idea what’s a good one, I should probably ask a doctor.  But I’m asking here too.  If you’ve had any experience with them, let me know.

new boss and other not very newsworthy news

Yesterday was the first day of my new boss. I am utterly relieved the nightmarish person who had been my boss is now out. She’s still around, lurking like a bad smell, but she’s not MY problem anymore.

Truly, it was magnificent to walk away from her yesterday giggling to myself when she approached me about some triviality which had struck her fancy.  “Sure, that does need to be done,” I said.  “I had even been planning to do it.  Remember that thing I made and showed you and asked if I could have permission to print on our account?”  (The thing she said was nice but told me not to print and questioned if it really was the best use of my time)  “That’s what it was for.”  And then I walked off.  I really enjoyed that.

Especially since she had screwed up my sick time last week.  She approved the request, then failed to approve it in my timecard.  I only found out because payroll called to ask me what was going on with it.  “What’s going on is that she has been pulling passive aggressive stunts with my timecard for way too long now,” I told the payroll worker.  “But hey, she’s not my boss since today!  I have a new boss!”

I have no idea if the new boss will engage in similarly themed if not executed harassment.  I hope not.  I haven’t really gotten a handle on him.  One day is hardly enough for an assessment.  We’ll see how it goes.  And I’ll have an opportunity to test this soon since I have that standing IV appointment to schedule for this week in the next day or two.  Yes, I finally got it scheduled.  It took four calls, one to registration, one to the ambulatory care unit where they do the infusion, one to my doctor, and then one more to registration.  Sheesh.

The doctor’s office also gave me the report on my ultrasound.  “It confirmed three nodules and they said ‘follow up scan as indicated’.”  The nurse told me she had no idea what “as indicated” meant and said she’d look into it.  I asked “ok, so I’m not sure what we are doing going forward here.  Can you ask if he (my primary care) also wants to check any thyroid function tests?”

That was last Thursday.  I’ll call today if they haven’t called me.  Reason being I have a standing blood draw with the standing IV order and if the doc wants me to get poked for thyroid tests, I figure why not consolidate?

Oh and I am still in the market for a drink that DOESN’T strip the enamel off my teeth and aggravate the reflux/heartburn.  Did I mention that I think this is the link regarding why my BP took a nose dive?  Sounds a bit silly, no?  But my primary was asking things like “had you been taking a lot of NSAIDs then stopped?”  “no more or less than usual, why?”  Apparently some of them have sodium in them.

So here’s the drink thing:  I usually don’t drink enough water.  I am one of those people who could go nearly all day without drinking any.  I have to remind myself to drink.  Well, to drink anything other than gingerale and coffee.  But the gingerale is totally killing my teeth.  After a day or two of drinking gingerale at what used to be my normal levels, I found my teeth were super sensitive for days, sometimes weeks.  So I stopped.  It was hard.  I’d find myself craving a gingerale in the evening (my prime gingerale drinking time).  There had been an especially difficult gingerale “withdrawal” the week before the BP drop.  My teeth had been killing after a weekend of high gingerale consumption so I went back to the ultrafloride toothpaste my dentist prescribed (I really am wearing all the damned enamel off my teeth…that’s what 30 years of barely controlled acid reflux will do) and switched the gingerale for water.  “I need to drink more water anyhow,” I told myself.  And after a week, my BP was in the basement.   I’m still covered with bruises from the clumsies.

Now before you shake your head and say “Oh dyspatient, what’s gingerale got to do with your blood pressure?” remember that I am under orders to push salt.  The cardiologist wants it, the nephrologist who did the dehydration work up (which showed I lose too much salt in my urine) wants it, and my primary care laughed and said “good!” when I told him about my “orange chip” habit.  How much sodium was I getting per day from my gingerales?  50 mg per can, and on a moderate consumption day, I would usually drink about 4.  I could easily (and often did) drink more.  And then I just took it all away.  No more 200 to 400 mg of sodium, and as my husband pointed out “It might not be so much how much you were having but that you were essentially on a low dose sodium ‘drip’ all day.”  Hm….  Interesting thought.

I’m resolved not to go back to the gingerale.  I’ll still have one occasionally, like if I’m out for lunch or dinner.  But in the meantime, what to drink?  Gatorade is as bad if not worse on my teeth and throat.  Right now, I’m trying out various “electrolyte enhanced” waters.  Of course, guess which one they don’t include in their electrolyte mix?  Yep.  Sodium.  Because it’s bad for you, if you’re a 50 year old overweight man with hypertension.

more waiting

This time on the hospital to set up the outpatient IV fluid treatments and weekly blood draws.  And boy could I use the fluids.  BP today is back down, 86/56.  And I feel it.

I had my ultrasound yesterday and then neuro appointment.  Too much running around, not enough food or fluids.  I tried, but I guess I fail in the keeping myself hydrated front.  And the extra diarrhea yesterday AM doesn’t help.  No, not one bit.  (tmi?  guess what kids, it’s a health related blog and I have GI problems).  Ultrasound was quick, so quick that afterwards I went to talk to the registration people about the IV order my PCP’s office said they sent over.  When I had first come in to register for the ultrasound, I was greeted by efficient people who signed me in and then called me up to register me.  When I came back, that was not the case.  One woman was staffing the desk…a woman whom I dubbed “Bumbles McJudy“.  Bumbles was in a state because there were TWO (Horrors!) people at the desk patiently waiting for her attention.  I explained what I was looking for when she called on me.  Twice, no twice and a half actually because after prompting me to explain it a third time she cut in with a frantic “Ok ok ok, I, um, ok, just have an um, have a seat and I’ll be with you in a minute.”  20 minutes and a growing line of “have a seat” people later, I got up and said “I’ll just call later,” and left.  But then later was the neuro appointment and then it was too late so now I will call on Monday and I hope have time to set up an IV appointment for some time next week.

The neuro appointment went ok.  Nothing major.  He asked about whether I called my PCP about the blood pressure and did they see me right away.  I told him yes, I called and they saw me as soon as they could.  He was relieved “because that was alarming” in reference to the hypotension.  I told him I usually run a bit low but not this low and showed off my lovely forearm bruise from where I tripped on my own feet and fell into a door frame.  “That really bothers me.  What did he think it was?” the neuro asked (“he” being the PCP).  “Um…’severe orthostatic hypotension, spontaneous dehydration, intermittent diarrhea’.” I said recalling the wording on the IV order.  “But WHY?” he continued.  The answer I wanted to give was “fuck if I know” but I use radio-protocol in this guy’s office since he’s sort of religious and I figure he probably would react poorly to my day to day potty-mouthed speech.  “No clue.” I said.  We talked about the diarrhea and CFS and fibro for a bit.  Then on to the MRI.  “Had an ultrasound of the thyroid, PCP ordered it” I told him when he mentioned the nodules. “Good, it’s probably nothing, usually these things are, but I’m glad he ordered it.”  Then on to the spinal stuff.  Stenosis at the nerve root at C5/C6, plus my EMG from last year.  “It looks like a healed injury” he said and asked “Did you ever hurt your neck?”  Nope.  We went through a very thorough history of Dyspatient’s possible neck/upper body traumas.  Not much.  “Uh, my sister threw me off a bunk bed when we were little and I hit the floor flat on my back and it knocked the wind out of me…but that’s really all I can remember.  I tend to land on my knees when I fall.”  He made a joke about me landing like a cat, and asked how old I was for the bunk bed wrestling match….too young he said when I told him I was probably about 7 or 8.  “Any shocklike feelings when you turn your head or put your head to your chest?”  “Any pain when you strain, cough, bear down?”  No, not that I can remember when the neck pain is going (which it wasn’t yesterday)… “Yeah but you minimize” he told me.

Stop the presses.  A doctor actually said I MINIMIZE.  Not catastrophize.  Minimize.  I’m going to ask my therapist about this, see if she agrees.  I know how I feel inside but I’m interested in knowing what my reactions come across like.  I’ve gotten very conflicting messages, although in the last 8 years and in medical contexts, usually I am told or get the impression that I’m seen as OVER-reacting/making mountains out of molehills/NOT minimizing.

Neuro doc and I ended with him saying I should really get massage therapy, asking about my medication use since we last met, and telling me that he could do another EMG but that he doesn’t think it’s really necessary right now but that I should let him know if I have more weakness or tingling in the arms.  Ok.

I’m alright with this.  He made sure to tell me that if I needed to see him, I should call.  He also recommended a GI doctor who wasn’t a dumbfuck (I had related some of my experience with the last guy to him, and quite validatingly, he was clearly annoyed with the guy’s approach.  “Did you know that there was a recent study that found a very large number of doctors have Asperger’s?” he asked.  I laughed.)  I didn’t feel like the neuro was pushing me out or incorrectly declaring me all better, or closing the door on my following up with him if I needed to for the migraines or neck pain or arm symptoms (which I still think go more with the migraines than not).  Amazing how much difference the approach makes, doesn’t it?  I mean, the neuro pretty much said “Yeah, I don’t know what’s going on here” but because he didn’t then suggest I was nuts or faking and didn’t wipe his hands of me, I can handle it.  And I know that I can call him if I need him.

And Monday, I will start the next round of phone calls and proddings of doctors, nurses, registrations clerks and whatnot.  And in the meantime, apparently I will just keep drinking the pedialyte (yuck) and gatorade.

correction

Not blob.  Blobs, plural.  On my thyroid, right lobe.

So, ultrasound of the thyroid coming up.  No needles, not right yet at least I hope.

And IVs for the hypotension.  I’m happy for that.

There was some other stuff on the MRI too, stenosis something something…I’ll let the neurologist go over that with me on Friday.

Now if all this shit turns out to be thyroidy, does the neuro or the primary care get the credit?  Neuro ordered the MRI of my neck, so I’m thinking he might.  Although I know that was NOT what he was looking for when he ordered it.

ow, oh, and ah

Update: Rather than improving with time, this seems to be worsening. BP is 89/43. So…do I
A) call neuro
B) call primary
C) go to e.r. since if I call & either actually calls back that is likely where I’ll end up (safe bet)
D) stay on the couch with cat and orange chips

Had a migraine again yesterday.  I took a fioricet.  I thought it was abating, so not to be undone by it (I had THINGS TO DO!) I went out, wearing dark sunglasses and a hat, with my sister to look for curtains.  And while out, the ice pick headaches and nausea started.  Recalling my neurologist’s advice, I decided to take another fioricet.  But realized I’d left them at home.

Got home and took another fioriciet.  Rested for a bit.  Went back out (to the drug store, to pick up the rest of my daily drugs).  While there, my sister and I sat in the blood pressure/arm squeezer machine.  Hers was a usual, for us, low blood pressure.  Mine?  It told me to fuck off.  It said it didn’t have sufficient information.  I jokingly said it should flash a little coffin when the BP is too low and announce in it’s computery voice “You have no blood pressure.  You are dead.”

Got home again and checked it on the one I have, which routinely runs a bit high.  90/45.  Woo.  Later, it had gone up to 91/47, which I consider negligibly up.  Took a whatchacallit, nausea pill because the nausea was in high gear at that point.  Laid on the couch and felt useless for the rest of the night.

And this AM, woke up with a headache and a blood pressure of 80/56.

So I’m wondering – does fioricet lower blood pressure?  It’s got a barbiturate it in so I suppose it probably does.  And I’m wondering if there is any god damned thing I can take for my migraines that isn’t going to fuck something else up.