Sunday, January 16, 2011

The background

We came home early in July from a glorious vacation aboard the Queen Victoria throughout the Mediterranean. Life went on as usual, my husband Buzz bowled twice a week, helped me in the garden whacking out weeds. Early in September he began an occasional cough. "Better see a doctor", sez I. "No, it's nothing," sez he.
We were planning a trip to Las Vegas in early November so he checked in with the doctor in October. His heart was fine, no fever, the diagnosis was an allergy and he was directed to cease taking certain drugs, etc. Returning from Las Vegas in the middle of November and still coughing, he went for an Xray. This is when the first mention of "fibrosis" came up. He was given a variety of inhalers, blood tests for allergis and later in the month he had a Cscan and the diagnosis was same: Possible Interstitial Pulmonary Fibrosis also called Idiopathic meaning "no known cause".
Now we are directed to a specialist, the closest one being in Hilo, 80 miles and two hours away. That was set for January 14.
By now its close to Christmas and Buzz's coughing is frequent, he has lost weight,his face is gray and he gasps for breath when talking on the telephone. My niece, who is visiting, is alarmed and thinks we should send for his daughter. Fortunately a day later his face has color, he has recovered his appetite and I calm down.
In preparation for the doctor visit we are instructed to find previous xrays and he cannot recall ever having a chest xray but has had two surgeries where one may have been taken. We begin our plea to that hospital for his medical records and finally receive them three days before the appointment. Next: the appointment.