Thursday, August 2, 2007

Mid-Summer checkup at the Scleroderma Center

Yesterday was my mid-summer checkup at the Scleroderma Center in Baltimore. My wife and I woke up early (4:30am) and drove down for the 9:50am appointment.

The checkup went very well. Dr Wigley is pleased with how things are progressing. No additional damage from the disease seems to have occurred and things appear stable since my last appointment and even very minor improvement in some areas. All positive news!

What bothers me throughout a typical day are usually my hands, hips and knees. He said the disease has caused the equivalent of arthritis in those joints. He's rather optimistic that I should start to see some improvement. Who knows, maybe I'll get to grip a golf club again some day. I wonder if he can cure my fade too and turn it into a nice draw? It's still hard for me to be overly optimistic that I'll get much better. I guess if I don't get any worse, I can live with that and any improvement is icing on the cake.

I head back to Baltimore towards the end of Sept for another checkup. He indicated that if things continue as they have, he will likely drop the dosage on the CellCept medication I'm taking. In my initial meeting with Dr Wigley, he indicated there's typically a 2 year period where the disease is most active. If I estimate about when I first started to notice something different going on with my body, it's been about 18 or 19 months. Hopefully the medication has caused it to plateau early. Monthly blood tests and another lung test and I should be good to go until my next visit.

If I look at what has occurred in the last few days with my dad having what appears to be successful back surgery, my brother in law being told his lymphoma is now in remission, and a positive report from my doctor, I guess this was a banner week! It's nice to know the things that come in 3's came with some good news for a change.

Summer is two thirds over already. Both girls visited my parents in FL for a week of being spoiled so my wife and I set off for Mystic, CT for a nice getaway weekend. We're all heading to North Carolina in mid August and then the kids are almost back to school. I hope you all enjoy the rest of your summer. Stay safe and well.