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EGD coming up and I need advice


Jaime
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A few months ago my doc did lab work and it showed that my B12 was deficient. She figured that it was just nutritional so she gave me a B12 shot and rechecked it in 3 months and it was well within normal limits. Well, I recently went to see a rheumatologist and she says that I have pernicious anemia. Well, this doc was not nice at all and I had a very hard time trusting her medical advice so I went to see my family doc. She doesn't think that I have pernicious anemia, but she said that I need an endoscopy to make sure that I don't. She also said that if I do have it that it is not causing the POTS.......she gave me an explanation of why she believes this but I am having some brain fog today so I can't remember. Anyways, the point of this is that I am terrified to have an endoscopy because the surgeon who is doing it is unfamiliar with POTS (I couldn't find one that was familiar with it) and I am just really scared to be put under anesthesia. Does anyone know what precautions need to be taken and if there are, how do I tell him without offending him?? I think he may have somewhat of a God complex, but I do trust him more than any of the other surgeons in my area so I don't want to offend him. Also, I am so scared because I am severely allergic to latex and going to a hospital is a nightmare for me. I am also just so frustrated because it seems like everyday I have a new health problem to deal with and I can't work so my bills are stacking up. Plus I have to start school in less than 2 weeks and I really hope that the EGD doesn't make me so sick that I can't start school on time. I am so sorry to ramble on like this. I would appreciate any help you could offer!

Thanks,

Jaime

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Jaime, I wasn't sure what the endoscopy test entailed, so I read this page on WebMD:

http://my.webmd.com/content/article/90/100...C-9531713CA348}

I also did some more reading on pernicious anemia, following a few different links, on the Webmd site, and found this: "Pernicious anemia is a rare type of anemia in which the blood cannot absorb vitamin B-12, which is necessary for the production of red blood cells. Pernicious anemia can be diagnosed through a blood test and is simply treated with vitamin B-12 injections."

Is your red blood cell count off? Is your doctor afraid you might have an ulcer and that you're bleeding internally from that? I couldn't find anything about using endoscopy to diagnose anemia of any kind...

According to what I've read, if you do go forward with the test, it sounds like you wouldn't necessarily have to have it in a hospital...and that you wouldn't be likely to get general anaesthesia... (which is great--twilight sleep is much easier on the body, and I've had both this year). Did the doctor/s say that general anaesthesia was necessary for the procedure?

As for the latex allergy, just say it out loud every time a new person walks into the room if/when you go for your test. Make sure other people attending you say it out loud too; you need to be reassured that they're paying attention!

Good luck--I don't have personal experience to share, just a bit of research off the 'net.

take care,

m

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Merrill, I really appreciate your comments. Apparently pernicious anemia can cause atrophy of the stomach and so in a person who has it, the lining of the stomach (?) should appear abnormal.....I am not quite sure if I am understanding this right. The surgeon said that I do have to have it in a hospital. I see him next week so maybe I will find out more then. Apparently the lab test that showed this indicated that there was an antibody that is blocking the intrinsic factor that is needed for the body to absorb B12. Also, what is twilight sleep? I am not sure if they will use general anesthesia or use something like Versed to cause concious sedation. Thanks for your help! :)

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Hi Jaime,

Sometimes working in the health field can bring benifits. I have been on both ends of the procedure. Nothing to cause you unnecessary worry. You will not be given general anesthesia.. to dangerous for such a quick and easy test. You will get conscious sedation with yes, probably versed and maybe morphine. Of course when I had mine I asked to watch and they had me set up in-front of the monitor. Next thing I knew I was in the next room waking from the drugs and going home soon after. Needless to say, I never saw a thing. While under light conscious sedation a person will follow commands to help the procedure along but won't feel pain due to morphine and won't remember anything due to the versed (a very nice drug of choice) :)

Hope this helps. It will be over before you know it. Make sure to bring a designated driver. Good luck :blink: Mary

p.s. let us know how it goes

p.p.s. normally a sign is put up near the patient with an allergy such as latex

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mary described perfectly what I meant by twilight sleep ...

I hope this test will be just a blip on your radar screen when all is said and done ... and if you do have this, B-12 supplements sound very manageable, whether injectibles or swallow-ables (if that's the course of treatment).

Best,

m

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i've had a kajillion of these things and never had a problem. i got versed and fentenyl. it's a really easy procedure and only takes about 10 minutes max, then you just get to have a great sleep for awhile. endoscopy is a great way to look for pernicious anemia, but there are other signs as well, burning tongue, lack of balance and other things. but it does cause an atrophy in the gut and that's why the b12 doesn't absorb well. endoscopy is a good thing in autonomic problems anyway because we tend to have gut problems and it will give you a baseline study. my hubby had severe gastritis (imflammation of the stomach) and didn't even know it. so not to worry. and just make sure you tell the nurse when you go into the endoscopy room you are allergic to latex. they have to put oxygen on you and a heart monitor, all standard, so you'll have plenty of time to tell them. good luck! morgan

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I have also had MANY endoscopies. They're not a big deal--and you're not under general anesthesia...only under a light sedative to make you not remember the whole thing. You need to be able to follow directions from the doctor to swallow the tube. I had the same drug cocktail mentioned above--it left me a bit dopey afterward, but I was able to go back to work the next day each time.

Nina

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