Friday, April 30, 2010

Brain fog did clear up........ my story. Joe

In 1999, I noticed that I was getting fatigued quite easily, but chalked it up to my excessive drinking. I made an appt with my PCP around September of that year to make sure nothing was wrong. He noticed that I had never had any test for Hep a, b or c and included that in the test. The Hep C came back positive. He sent me to a specialist to confirm that I had Hep C and it was confirmed.

He also told me that if I don’t do TX I will die. At the time I didn’t know anything about Hep C and figured I’d better do it. However, because of my drinking (alcoholic) he wouldn’t let me do TX until I had stopped for at least 6 months, no way was I going to do that.

Over the next 5 years I became progressively worse with the fatigue and memory problems; I still attributed to my drinking. After drinking for all of my adult life I figured it was catching up to me and decided I had better stop if I could. In April of 2005 is when I had my last drink (very proud of myself for that). After 10 months of not drinking and still having major fatigue problems I decided to do TX and get it over with. I started Feb. 2006 and finished Jan 2007. I was 1a and have been SVR since week 12 of TX.

I was supposed to have flu like symptoms, it was much worse than having the flu. I was on my own with this except for my wife being there for me. I knew nothing about forums or a support system for this. I thought I was going nuts, I was screaming at everyone for no reason.

Once TX was over I could hardly wait to get back to normal and after a couple of months I felt no better. I called the NP up that was monitoring me and told her that. She said it may take up to 6 months before it was out of my system. The 6 month point was no better. I made an appt with her and listed the many things that were not right with me, major fatigue, no short term memory, mental confusion and brain fog, could not stop sleeping etc.

She told me she never heard of such a thing happening to someone after TX. HUH?

I found out about forums for Hep C in August of 2008 and finally started getting the low down on Hep C and TX. I found that I did not have to do TX or die; in fact all my liver functions were great. My ultra sound was normal; they didn’t even have a biopsy done on me. I would have chosen not to do TX had I known that. I would have kept a close eye on my liver and held off to see if they would come up with a real cure.

My 3rd year post TX went by in January and the brain fog did clear up which in itself a great thing. But I still get fatigued easily and require a lot of sleep and naps throughout the day. My short term memory is shot and a 20 minute drive wears me out.

My problems with this disease are the lack of info out there about it. The mis-information being told those that have it is still the same, treat or die. The denial that the symptoms after TX is not related to TX; although I now see that they are admitting to some possibilities of TX causing some problems; has to be labeled as such.

I cannot work as I was an electrician which is a very demanding job, but if I were just selling popcorn I couldn’t do that either. I can’t even do volunteer work because I never know when I’m going to just poop out. I am lucky that I came down with a shoulder injury in 2007 and was able to go out on SSD for that. I know how much of a struggle it is to get SSD from the after math of TX.

I feel like I am 80 years old instead of 59. I was an IV drug user back in the late 60 as many of my friends were. Most of them have Hep c too.

Like I said use what you want or do use anything at all, I’ll let you decide on that.

Sincerely,

Joe Walsh

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