Thursday, November 3, 2011

Maybe an Adrenal Crisis

I'm tired and I have a headache with the shakes so this may not be the most coherent post ever written.

I went to the ER. Primarily because the vomiting precluded oral steroids and I needed help working around that. And there was the possibility of an endoscopy complication. Also, I was shaking until my teeth chattered, short of breath and my stomach was burning hot.

The doctor was great, really great. I would have liked to have had the IV steroids a little faster as studies show delaying the dose is what leads to death in an acute adrenal crisis. But the ER was, overall, great.

It helped that I looked like sh*t. The endoscopy anesthesia had beaten me up pretty good to begin with so I had the fat lip and some broken capillaries already. The vomiting then made my face bleed under the skin on a large scale. Natural zombie make-up. Today I have black eyes.

I went from Triage, barely able to keep my eyes open to winking at the triage nurse on my way out saying "Steroids" in response to her "You look so much better."

It's hard to say what happened. The thinking is it was an adrenal crisis or an almost crisis, but I was not text book. For one, my bp shot up way high. It had been too low all day and I drank pickle juice as I wasn't feeling great (but not so bad I thought I would end up in the ER! In fact, I felt optimistic about the next day being even better.).

I had no idea I was going to throw up. Did not feel sick at all. There was no warning. I went from 'tomorrow is going to be great, I'm on the road to recovery' to puking in the tub from my position on the toilet. It was very fast. Very sudden.

I was terrified I would pass out and was desperate to reach the hubby. He didn't check his phone, the stinker. Neither did his friends or the skating rink he was at. My neighbors were all asleep already. So I packed a bag and tried to wait for the hubby figuring 911 was always an option.

They started me with fluids, which helped give me control over whether my eyes stayed open or not, but didn't touch the abdominal pain and then I started wilting again. The steroids are what finally eliminated the pain and 'woke' me up--that is, I think, probably the most credible evidence that it was adrenal.

My lab work was also normal, but I gather this is not unheard of from other adrenal patients.

And that's it. I'm going back to bed. I probably forgot to include something important.


  1. Noooooooooooooo!!! I'm so sorry to hear this but glad you are okay. What dose of steroids did they give you and are you on a taper now? How scary!!

  2. Whew. I was SO worried about you last night that I told my husband about what was going on.

    He told me that he has worried about the fact that he's unreachable when he's at skate club but figured that since he has the munchkin with him, that the biggest issue with needing emergency medical help was covered.

    So I know we're not neighbors, but when I had what we now know was an intense gallbladder attack last summer, we called our next door neighbors around midnight or 1 a.m. to ask them to come sit with Ellie, who was asleep. Unfortunately, the paramedics (who diagnosed me with a panic attack, the patronizing jerks) woke her up and then she threw a major fit until we allowed her to come with us to the hospital. Sigh. But it was *really* good to have neighbors to call like that, and I bet you have neighbors who would be happy to help you out, even if you woke them. I know I would, if one of my neighbors needed help like that. Even if it was someone I didn't know particularly well.

    Ok, I'm rambling. I'm SO glad you're ok and got the medical care you needed.

    Clearly we need to talk about the odd coincidence of having husbands who skate. :)

  3. Thanks Ana. It was 125 mg.

    Aviva: I am trying to work up my courage to talk to some neighbors. You're right the biggest issue is child care. Followed by me driving myself when I'm that sick.



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