Friday, September 23, 2011

2011_08_16 Tuesday

Friday I will go to New Orleans for my shot training and begin my meds Friday night. I'm feeling better about it today, but yesterday I was really stuck on not being able to imagine giving myself the shots. My mood yesterday went from confident to terrified over and over again. My heart knows I'm good to go. My body is still trying to freak out. I had a bout of uveitis over the weekend, but it's better now. I feel good today. :)

So, here's the stuff I received a few weeks ago:

So much to read! So much to ignore! I've been told the major and most common side effects, and I don't need to read all of the info. I don't need to add any more concern.

Basically, the interferon makes you feel like you have the flu. Your body produces interferon when you have the flu. It's not the flu virus that makes you hurt and tired, it's the interferon.

I even got a hazardous materials box for the used syringes.

The Ribavirin is taken every 12 hours. It is the drug that messes with your head. Depression is the number 1 side effect. So I have an appointment to go over all of this with my GP (he manages my meds) and hopefully he can get me in to see a psychiatrist soon.

It is also the drug with very major risks during pregnancy, including serious birth defects or death to baby. Because of this, we have to sign something saying we are using 2 forms of birth control during treatment and for 6 months after. We've been married 23 years and used no birth control for at least 20 years. At first, I felt "great, another year and a half of no pregnancy for me." Honestly, the painful yearning for another child has waned, but I would still welcome such a blessing. I've gotten a diaphragm and was a little concerned about the interruption of the moment to use it. But Hubby's said it made him feel like a kid again (of course, not meaning little kids, just back many years). That made me smile.

The thickest booklet in the whole box is about avoiding pregnancy

A large part of it is a FAQ and myth control. That was an excellent teaching opportunity with Son, and it provided us both with some real belly laughs. For instance, the myths include; a woman is not sexually active if she does not move during intercourse, and cannot become pregnant. A woman can't get pregnant standing up, or in water, or the first time, or if she doesn't have an orgasm, or if she only misses one BC pill.

The last of my meds is Incivek, a newly approved drug which targets the HepC virus specifically. This is the magic bullet as it were. It's taken every 8 hours for 12 weeks, then I'm done with it. In trials, it doubled the successful treatment rates (from an average of about 40% to near 80%). It's ridiculously expensive, but completely covered by a grant program form the drug company. I'd imagine they get tax breaks for that.

I am at a place (and trying to stay there) of being watchful for side effects, but not worrying about them, which I believe could worsen them. Today is good!

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