Monday, March 1, 2010

Two Steps Back

Yesterday it appeared that I was making progress against the dread nasal plague. I think it was just lying low due to toxic amounts of tylenol, advil, sudafed and such. Last night was one of the bad ones, and I did not feel better today. Fortunately for my friend, she'd planned to drive down to San Diego for a spell as she gets away from my 4am coughing and gargling fits.

I cleaned myself up enough this morning to get to the pharmacy, thinking to refresh my allergy nose spray and get my anti-fungal meds, only to find that the doctor had called in a prescription for me for antibiotics on friday, without telling me. I suspect that when I get to work, there will be a voice mail waiting for me telling me about the antibiotics. But what kind of moron leaves a message at a work address when they're calling someone who is sick enough to be home and doesn't reach that person? They do have my work as my primary contact number to remind me for regular appointments, but a little bit of thought might have been nice. If that's good enough for you, stop here. For the rest of the horrific details,

So I've been expelling large gobs of brilliant yellow snot since thursday morning. But my symptoms started with a sore throat on tuesday night that lingered into wednesday. Wednesday, I went to work in the morning, got a throat culture (negative for strep) and went home after lunch. I gargled with every gargling mixture I own - minty, medicinal, salt, etc. It helped, but not enough, so I took a lot of painkillersbecause my throat, it hurt.

Whether it was the snot or something else, my body was producing something that affected the back of my throat like battery acid. Although, really, it's more the front of my throat. Think back of the uvula. So something sticky would drip down the back of my uvula/front of my throat, but not so much drip off as cling just enough to make me cough a lot, and burn the crap out of everything. The burning travelled down my throat (and maybe sometimes up, it's hard to say) making me have to sleep almost upright to avoid throwing up, but that upright position made the postnasal drip in the throat worse so I'd wake up coughing. Really, really unpleasant.

I slept a lot, but not well, and not easily. I was acually waking up early-ish and staying up since it was more pleasant than sleeping. And while up I could load up on sudafed and tylenol. (Oh, and thanks to me being asleep from 9am to 8pm last thursday, I couldn't get the sudafed until friday thanks to the stupid anti-meth laws because I had to sign it out from the pharmacy. Thanks for the extra suffering!)

I've been using my sinus rinse 3,4 times a day - even in my worst previous infections, I'd still only needed it twice a day or 3 at the outside, and it helped clear things up so fast that I'd only really be miserable for a day, then with tylenol and sudafed in small amounts, I'd be ok to go back to living by day 2 or 3. Not so this.

I think I got this from someone who sneezed right in my face as I was leaving our morning meeting. The morning meeting is a room packed full of people to the point you can't really move, and i skip it as much as possible, but have been asked by management to put my face in more often. So I did, along with all the sick people at work (and there were a lot). One guy who looked particularly miserable for several days actually did sneeze *right in my face* as I was exiting on monday morning. I'm gonna blame him.

This goo has either been eroding or sticking to my vocal chords such that I cannot make noise at certain expected frequencies. It was awesome trying to call around this morning to make more doc appointments (before I'd found out I already had a scrip for antibiotics waiting for me at the pharmacy), trying to say and spell my name when certain sounds just didn't get produced. Dude, if I can't speak, just give me a freaking appointment, stat!

To cap off everything, I was finding that when I blew my nose, I could feel the pressure in my tear ducts. I didn't know I could feel my tear ducts, but it turns out I can when they're inflamed. Now, I have disgusting infected mucous in my right tear duct, and I wake up with red eyes crusted in yellow goo. It's delicious.

So to make myself presentable, I get up, cough up everything I can until my throat hurts too much, then gargle and repeat. I wash off my face, then dose my eye with a stream of saline, then do the nasal rinse, then swallow some medicine then gargle some more. If I'm still feeling awful, I shower and hack up more stuff in the steam. It's been a real treat. Not.

At any rate, as of today (monday) I have an anti-bacterial med, an anti-fungal med, nose spray, throat numbing spray, and I'm still using the sinus rinse and OTC meds. I picked up enough wonton soup to feed a family of 4 and ate half of it with added hot peppers. My throat still hurts but not as much. This allowed me to sleep from about 11am to 8pm. I'm about ready to go back to bed. My right eye is still mattery despite 3 rinses since 8. My nose feels mostly clear, thanks to the rinse, so it's all my peripheral sinuses that must be backing up with yellow evil. My throat is still sore, but I'm hoping the Chloraseptic allows me to sleep until I can take more antibiotics in the morning. Although, for the first time ever, the Halls cough drops actually seem to help me prevent coughing rather than just give me something to distract myself with.

But I'm still having that "I'm really sick" experience of not being able to regulate my body temperature. I go from freezing and shivering to hot and sweating and back without any real relation to atmospheric conditions. It's 65F here during the day, not a temperature designed to cause either extreme. Yes, I'm totally fed up with this.


Junior and Orion said...

Eeekkkk!!!! You didn't have pink eye did you? I had it as a child and my eyes would completely crust over with yellowish stuff.


Sandy C. said...

The pink eye "Conjunctivitis" is all part and parcel of this lovely cold virus. I have it, too, but only in one eye at the moment. It would have scared me if I hadn't already read your blog, so thanks! :)

CrankyOtter said...

It should scare you anyway, it's really vile. The throat burning is bad. The eye infection is bad. The lingering malaise is bad. But I'm glad you're just sick, not panicky and sick.

Turned out to be at least partly bacterial, and two rounds of antibiotics have it mostly licked, although I still can't sing "Paparazzi" (by lady gaga) which I like partly because it's entirely in my normal vocal range. But not this month. I'm still an alto, but maybe a first alto. Ugh.