21 October, 2008

Consumptive Diaries Part 25: Cautious Optimism

Went to the hospital today, and it didn't have a truly awful experience (unlike my last 2 or 3 visits).
I actually feel cautiously optimistic after today's visit.

My liver has pretty much returned to normal. From a nasty score in the 200s last time, it's now in the mid-40s. He said it's still a tad high, but healthy enough to start TB meds again.
He also floated the option of not taking medication & just leaving it be. It's a low possibility that the latent TB will turn into active TB. Also, he told me that, in Britain, it's pretty normal TB to be left untreated. In Japan, however, the norm is to be treated for it. He asked me if i was planning to move back to Britain in the next year or so, because if so, I could skip treatment.
So, told him that i was planning to move to Germany in the next year. He said that he hadn't looked into TB treatment in Germany. But i was reassured by the fact that the doctor is making efforts to help me out & look at different options.

Anyway - as we both didn't know what Germany's attitude is about TB; and i don't want to run the risk of being thrown out of the country for being a dirty leprous TB sufferer, i have opted to try continuing treatment.
As the last drug (Isoniazid) wasn't agreeing with my liver, I'll be taking a different TB antibiotic (Rifampicin) for 4 months. This one also runs the risk of liver damage, but the really exciting thing is that certain bodily fluids (especially pee & tears) can turn bright orange....

Am not going to get to hopeful, because experience has proven that nothing goes the way you expect (especially with TB related stuff...) But i am allowing myself to be cautiously optimistic.

AND...the doctor said it would be OK to have a glass of beer everyday!! Woohoo! Party hearty Helen is back!


Anonymous said...

How nice to read a positive posting!!! I most admit I might have decided to stop taking any meds for a bit longer to give my body a rest from poisoning it - but then promptly gone to a bar and used alcolhol as a poison instead! Have a beer for me tonite - and I'll have one for you in return!

tanabata said...

Glad to hear things are looking up. Let me know if you're free some weekend. It's been so long, it would be nice to see you!