I had never even heard of cor pulmonale until today. Now I’m anxiously awaiting an echocardiogram and cat scan to rule it out. What is it you ask? In laymens terms — it’s heart failure. Do I feel like my heart is failing? Maybe sometimes. But, I also feel like I’m too young to be dealing with this. And I’m not sure how to keep it from breaking.
When I was at the Rheumatologist office the other day, T-bear (my 11-year-old) said to me “mom, you are at the old peoples’ doctor.” And he was right. I was the youngest patient there being that my hair isn’t blue or silver, I don’t walk with a cain and my flesh is still somewhat smooth.
cor pulmonale is enlargement of the right ventricle of the heart as a response to increased resistance or high blood pressure in the lungs. Lung disease such as IDL or pulmonary hypertension is common in individuals suffering from autoimmune diseases. MCTD in particular. I have read in multiple message boards where people with MCTD have gotten irreversible lung damage from scar tissue build-up in the lungs, which leads to cor pulmonale.
When talking to Brad, who I went on a first date with recently (that’s another Blog entry), he told me this morning “Don’t you Google that stuff, you don’t need to worry about all that — that’s what the doctors are for.” And he’s right. Getting all worked up about it isn’t going to help. I don’t even know if there is any damage. I keep clinging to the idea that all my congestion and breathing problems are from Bronchitis or asthma related. Or that I’m just a little sick from a cold that won’t go away.
I keep telling myself that the exhaustion I’m feeling is from my hectic schedule. Not from lack of oxygen to my organs.
I hope I’m correct. If not, then I’ll deal with it. It’s just one more mountain to climb. Hoping I have the energy to climb it if I have to.
If you’re wondering what treatment is — it’s more meds or possibly a lung transplant.
I don’t think that my tests will reveal this is necessary, but I’m trying to prepare myself for the worst, yet hope for the best. Most important thing though is I know my God has a plan — and whatever it is — I know he is with me through it all. I have faith that this will all work itself out somehow. I also believe He’s not finished with me yet! He has plans to prosper me … and give me a future. I do believe that!
So – if you think about it — say a little prayer for me. And I promise to update this blog as soon as my tests are run and I know more.
Until next time friends — love you!!!