Westward Toward The Sunset

Discussion in 'Personal Diaries' started by Faye Fox, Nov 14, 2023.

  1. Faye Fox

    Faye Fox Veteran Member
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    I have decided to start my final diary. I hope to keep it light and interesting with a focus on the challenges of aging. I don't have much to post about now, other than by Thursday, I will finally have some answers on upcoming necessary surgery.

    I have a 3 mile walk planned today and also plan to make brownies. The addition of the Alpaca hat and gloves to my walking ensemble, has really paid off in comfort.

    It is cold, but the sun is shinning and does wonders for my aging attitude.
     
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  2. Don Alaska

    Don Alaska Supreme Member
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    We will be anxious to hear about the upcoming surgery if you wish to share.
     
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  3. Thomas Windom

    Thomas Windom Very Well-Known Member
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    X2. Keeping fingers crossed for you.
     
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  4. Faye Fox

    Faye Fox Veteran Member
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    This afternoon, I will know exactly what surgical procedure the doc will do for my large hiatal hernia. The surgery is necessary so cancer can be avoided. The situation is nearing a cancer presentation, which might include taking part of the stomach if allowed to precede. After reviewing the ugly details of that surgery and chemo, I am choosing not wait any longer, especially since all meds have failed.

    One med that showed promise, several years ago, had me crippled up and resulted in steroid injections. My muscles and tendon aches and pains were called Polymyalgia Rheumatica which is diagnosis based on symptoms, not medical lab test, as is Fibromyalgia which one doctor "diagnosed" me with years ago. The steroid shots had it cleared up and the stomach med was discontinued.

    I was fine (other than constant coughing and heavy phlegm) (I have never had much heartburn) until last spring when my endoscopy showed I must reduce that hernia to avoid cancer and the new meds they tried had me with a lot of joint and muscle pain. I knew immediately what was causing the fibro/poly myalgia pains, and discontinued the med which both docs agreed with.

    Note 1 : I was taking heavy magnesium doses all the times I used Proton Pump Inhibitors, Histamine Blockers, Prokinetic Agents, and antiacids. It made no difference in stopping or deducing the med caused body pains that were separate and different from my normal body pains resulting from the Zoster virus that nearly killed me.

    Note 2 : I had been using these meds before I had lumpectomy in both breast. Biopsy showed that one breast showed stage zero (called precancer by some docs) and the other no sign cancer, just a very small benign tumor. Scans show there is no return or sign of cancer or tumor in either. I don't regret for one split second, having that minor surgical procedure done. I do not consider myself as having breast cancer and that is the reason I seldom mention the lumpectomy.

    Note 3 : I highly suspect that the stomach meds played a large part in my stage 1 colon cancer (surgically removed) and former vaginal precancer presentation, which has totally cleared up now that no high powered anti acid meds are being taken.

    So perhaps I will share the ugly details of the upcoming surgery after I know for certain exactly what will be done.

    Today I will walk if it stops raining. Nothing like a walk to get my mind clear and ready for another leg of my sunset years journey.

    All I know now is that I will be on liquids foods for 6 weeks. The doc told me this much before the last endoscopy which needed to be done to show that surgery was necessary. Being the witty bitty I am, I told the doc, "So what's new, girl?" She pointed out my quick draw wit was a bit hasty and pointed out as a gummer I am on soft foods and she said clearly, "LIQUID foods." Oh, girl let's let the fun begin.

    The upside is I won't need a feeding tube as would be necessary if stomach tissue had to be removed because of cancer. That brightened my day. Hopefully she is still on the same page today. :)
     
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    Last edited: Nov 15, 2023
  5. Beth Gallagher

    Beth Gallagher Supreme Member
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    Hope your appointment goes well, Faye.
     
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  6. Don Alaska

    Don Alaska Supreme Member
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  7. Mary Stetler

    Mary Stetler Veteran Member
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    Back when I taught nutrition to low income folk, I recommended putting dinner in the blender and then pouring it into ice cube trays instead of buying expensive jarred baby food. Maybe adding water to foods will make it liquid enough for you? Although when it gets to the lower intestine, the liquid gets sucked out of whatever you ingest.
    ?
    Any food you would like can be put into a blender to be taken out at will. I would keep leftover meat loaf separate from cherry pie. But then, that's just me.:rolleyes:
     
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  8. Faye Fox

    Faye Fox Veteran Member
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    Good news!

    I learned that biological women have hiatal hernias at a much higher rate than men and that is why my Girl Surgeon specializes in surgeries from the throat to anus. She said women that have had babies have digestive issues at a higher rate than women that haven't or men. She also said that the price women pay to keep human life on the planet, isn't fully appreciated by men.

    The recent biopsies showed no sign of the hernia or the ulcer ever becoming a cancer situation. The doc in her early 60s, now wearing a BIG tag saying "The Girl Surgeon," after explaining the surgery and long healing time, said while it would stop the symptoms, it is at least 3 months of pure hell and frustration and I might be cranky for six months. She says my current condition is in no way going to become anything bad.

    I am scheduled to see her in 6 months. At that time she will review how the new medication is working and possibly do a endoscopy in a year to check the ulcer. While the hernia will not ever get stronger, it isn't life threatening. She said the esophagus irritation should respond to the new med. I just took a dose and already my mouth and throat feel better and less irritated.

    After a couple of healthy belches, I quoted Shrek, "Better to get it out than keep it in, I say."

    The new medication --- A quarter teaspoon of baking soda before bed and when any discomfort is noticed. @Von Jones had it right with her baking soda treatment. I am to discontinue any use of any anti acids prescription or over counter, as all of them can effect muscles and nerves and also glaucoma. Use only Tylenol when needed for headaches and the topical Voltaren (brand name) sparingly for muscle pains. Continue with the flaxseed heat pad if throat is bothered by phlegm.

    It was a rainy day and my usual, close to the clinic, parking spot was now reserved, All the handicap spots were full, so I had to park and walk across the large hospital lot to get to the clinic. I was wet and cranky about how now several of the old senior patient spots were now reserved for the wealthy woke. I am proud to say my Girl Surgeon, that grew up on a ranch, drives a big diesel 4 WD.

    IMG_6615.JPG
     
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  9. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    I pray everything will go well, @Faye Fox.
     
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  10. Mary Stetler

    Mary Stetler Veteran Member
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    Very happy to hear about your girl surgeon. I wonder if they can give/require those conditions suffered by women to trannys,:rolleyes:
    Ask her about zinc carnosine? It is soothing to the alimentary canal problems here.
     
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  11. Faye Fox

    Faye Fox Veteran Member
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    Heading out for a 5 mile walk to the insurance that handles my part D drug plan. It has skyrocketed in cost and only covers 2 of the 3 drugs I use. It covers the eye meds which aren't expensive to start with, but they quit paying on my antiviral until out of pocket hits $400. My pharmacist put it on some generic plan that makes it affordable, but still double what I was paying.

    I pay $700 a year for this plan so I could save money by cancelling it, but I have several questions I need to ask before cancelling. Off I go.
     
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  12. Faye Fox

    Faye Fox Veteran Member
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    Good news at the insurance agents. He put me on a plan the saves me $500 a year. Cost of part D plan is $36 a YEAR. My old plan was $55 a MONTH. The new company has a copay on only one drug and it is $15 a month.

    He recommends all seniors have their agents review all available drug plans once a year because these plans are forever changing.

    Beautiful sunny day with no wind and light jacket cool, had me enjoying my 10 mile walk.
     
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  13. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Part D drug plans are managed care plans, like Part C. I hate them. They keep changing things. I get pages of information about changes, it seems like every quarter. But they don't list the changes, they just list all the coverage over again. I give up trying to follow it. I figure that's what they hope.

    I hardly ever use mine. One drug for osteoporosis the doctor had to write a special letter to get coverage, and then it's only 50%.

    The only reason I got Part D in the first place is, if you ever want to get it later there is a penalty. There were 3 options at the time. I think there was a penalty for changing to a higher level of coverage later, too. It had to do with the dreaded "donut hole." :eek: I don't even know if that is still in effect.

    Watch out for introductory premiums. They will probably change after an initial period.
     
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  14. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Senior Staff
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    Our agent does that for us, too, @Faye Fox . He just changed us over to a better plan this year as well, with a different company that offers a better plan than our Humana one was.
    I totally agree that a person should have a regular agent, not tied to any specific company, and have their coverage updated each fall when the open enrollment happens.
     
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  15. Mary Stetler

    Mary Stetler Veteran Member
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    Wisconsin has a drug program that costs $30 a year, just so you have a plan which medicare requires. It goes by one's income as to how much one pays, deductibles, etc. I don't do drugs so that is all I pay but I pay a bazillion dollars in supplements which it doesn't cover.
     
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