About a week to ten days after the colonoscopy, I got a call from the nurse at the office. The biopsy showed ulcerative colitis. The doctor wanted to put me on Asacol. I called back after looking it up and asked about my sulfa allergies. They called back and said it was fine. I went to the drugstore to pick it up. NINE huge pills a day. Expensive ones. But if that was what it was going to take to feel better, then I would take them. I was great about taking them on time and regularly. (even though I grumbled) One day in I was sure that they were making me achey. But I was busy with other things, building a garden, a big project at work. Those got blamed for my aching instead...since that was more logical. Two days into this med, I could hardly move. I hurt BAD! I couldn't even cut French Toast. I gave it another day and the achiness seemed better. My bathroom trips didn't seem better. However, this isn't a drug that works instantly.
The Upper GI and Small Bowel Study
Later that week, it was time for the upper GI and small bowel study. No biggy I thought. I had this one done during a hospitalization when I was a child. I remembered the x-ray room being cold and the barium as being no thrill but not overall bad.
I was in for a surprise! I went to the local radiology lab. I filled out a ton of paperwork. (again!) Then I got ushered back to a series of dressing rooms, where I changed out of my clothes and into a hospital gown. It was FREEZING. I sat and read my book on this little bench in the dressing room. There were chairs in the hallway filled with other people waiting as well. After a wait, I was ushered into the radiology room. I got to take something that was like unflavored poprocks on steroids, then quickly followed by some extra thick barium. Then the x-rays started. At some points I could watch on a tv screen. That was pretty interesting. The tipping and turning of the table wasn't all that fun. The tummy prodding wasn't fun. We are already talking about a tummy that was not all that painfree before they started poking it this way and that. The techs were nice and friendly but I had to roll my eyes as they would tell me to get in the bathing suit model position. Lots of clicking. Then out in the hall to wait. In about a half hour...more poking, prodding, positioning and pictures.
Uh-oh...not going through fast enough...(geez, everything has run through me for months, why not this?) so another special barium drink. This one out in the hall. By this point, I am seriously ready to both belch and toss my cookies, which are the number one rules that I was not allowed to do. They then tell me to walk and stand rather than sit to wait. So, I do, in this very crowded, very cold hallway. Another woman is there going through the same test. She is younger, nervous, and really looks scared. We get to talking about the test. She says her doctor things she has Crohn's or UC, but they really aren't sure at all. The woman sitting next to her starts rambling about how she better pray it isn't Crohn's. She starts listing off the horrors of Crohn's. Yikes. I suggest the young woman visit the Crohn's and Colitis board at iVillage. She seemed grateful. Time for more pictures!
These were taken in another room. "That other room is being used currently by patients who are on target for the time" Meaning, I was slow and they weren't going to waste the good room on me if I wasn't ready for the full set of pics. I was though. After a bit more waiting, I got to go back to the other room. I got poked and turned some more and the last set of pictures was done! Yay! I hurridly got dressed and left. I went home. Tossed my cookies. I felt pretty drained but made it through the day.
The weekend following was busy. I had a big project at work to get done. Everyone was working hard, not aided by numerous tech set backs. I worked. I felt pretty bad but I worked. When working it was pretty easy to ignore most of the yuckiness. By Sunday night, I was in rough shape though. I called the doctor on call. He called back. He said to take some imodium, get some sleep and call the doc in the morning. Ok. Can do.
By morning, I was on to feeling REALLY REALLY bad. I called and they said come in at noon and we will work you in or go to the ER. Ok. I can go in at noon. I talked to work. They said whatever worked and they understood. Things got worse. I ended up going to the ER.