Wednesday, 2 September 2009

The 7th circle of Hell: Pleurisy.

Oh pleurisy, won't you please leave me alone?

I don't think I've actually ever been free from it the second it took up residence in my right side. Granted, at the moment its seldom painful, and when it is, it's no where near as bad as it was at it's worst. When I was recovering from that time, it was probably weeks until I could breathe without pain, whether intense or just sheer irritating from the consistency of it. I took painkillers for a few weeks too, morning and night (the first week or so I think it was 4 times a day) and then stopped taking them in the morning because it was wasn't as bad as it was. At night it was pretty grim though. I was woken up several times every morning, from the pain, because I hadn't taken painkillers the night before.

Anyway, so I got well enough not to need painkillers. Yes, the pain was still there, but eventually it did dissipate almost completely. I remember waking up one morning and realising it didn't hurt to breathe. Or at least, it didn't hurt to breathe in deeply. I'd probably feel a tiny bit of pain for 2 seconds at some point during the day, but it meant that I'd beaten it, and it was finally going away. When it hurts to breathe every time, your weeks feel like months, and the days feel like weeks. You get the gist.

It was never completely eradicated though. Whilst I'm doing my nebs every day, trying to remember to do physio, taking all my tablets (about 30+ a day, which is what many CFers can do in their sleep) and just generally looking after myself a lot better than I was a few months ago, pleurisy still won't leave me the fuck alone. And it comes for a visit at the worst times. Your witness: At a friend's 18th earlier in the week, it was getting late and people were starting to go to sleep. And I felt this horrible sharp pain. The word 'Pleurisy' quickly flashed before me, and I left the room that I'd been in with a group of friends - I never make a scene with pleurisy (or anything CF related, if I can help it. Hell, I don't subject my friends to a coughing fit, they're not seeing me in crippling pain). I went outside, and at 3am, it was pretty damn cold. But for some reason, the cold helped. All I could do was take deep breaths, but the pain went away. I couldn't bring myself to tell anyone why I'd disappeared though. If they can't help, why worry them, right?

But this sudden, worse than it's been in recent weeks, pleurisy pain, was horrible. I freaked out a bit, if I'm honest. I truly do not think I could go through the bad side of pleurisy again. It hurt too much, and I really think it's the worst pain I've ever felt. And this is coming from someone with numerous un-related CF scars, cause I was a complete klutz when I was a kid.

(Well, falling down some stone steps on a crappy plastic tricycle, not the best of moments.)

1 comment:

MBNAD woman said...

Just catching up with your recent posts. Pleurisy (once about 20 years ago) made me utterly sure that I was dying so I can't imagine what it must be like to live with its constant risk of return.

Well done on your successes in getting the award etc. Look forward to some stupendous blog pics with the camera.

Mad x

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