04 Feb Health Update
Well I went today to see a Nephrologist in Seattle. I had some more blood tests among some other things, and got to spend quite a bit of time with him. Based on my medical history and the tests thus far, here are today’s conclusions:
I have been diagnosed with two things. One is what is called “thin basement membrane disease”. This disease allows blood to leak into my kidneys, and is mostly benign with a small percentage of people having progressing problems from there. My other “possible” problem is “iGa Nephrothapy ” – this is a kidney disorder that occurs when IgA—a protein that helps the body fight infections—settles in the kidneys. After many years, the IgA deposits may cause the kidneys to leak blood and sometimes protein in the urine. While 25% of adults with iGa develop end-stage renal failure, if this is what I have, I increase the percentage due to the fact the TBMD is leaking blood and protein into the kidneys too. If you wonder what these things are, or want more information, you can google it (been talking about it all day…kinda don’t want to anymore).
I won’t know for sure completely until a biopsy is done, but the doctor recommended that I don’t get one until or if the protein in my urine reaches 1000 milligrams (mine is 672). If I only have the TBMD, this may not happen, but if I have the other too…well it just may get there. The good news is, I was right about the food thing. The protein I have been eating has not caused the jump in levels, nor is it anything that I have done to myself with food, coffee, ibuprofen, etc. I don’t have to go for three months on a super restricted diet. I do only get to eat 100 grams of protein per day, but that is double what I thought…so a blessing. Another blessing is, because I have been eating well, lost weight, back in the gym, I am a year or so ahead of the game. That would have been the first thing I would have had to do. Since diabetes and hypertension are one of the main concerns, my overall health in other areas will help me. So what next?
First, I have to keep my protein down like I mentioned above. That means discipline for the most part, but I can splurge on occasion for which I am grateful. I have to wait on current labs to eliminate a few other not so good things…so gonna pray about that. If I pass that hurdle, I will have to maintain my current body weight, diet, exercise routine. I will need to monitor my blood pressure and possibly take a pill to keep it low. We will continue to pray that nothing progresses…but if the protein goes up to 1,000, then the biopsy. If “iGa Nephropathy” is confirmed, I will have to take some wonderful drugs and they will treat me more aggressively. There is no cure, but at that point the focus would be to slow the kidney disease and prevent complications. Knowledge is power I guess, so I am glad I have some answers today that I didn’t have yesterday. So I am going to pray, enjoy every “healthy” day that shows no sign of progression, enjoy every bite of my food and sip of coffee, and love my family and those God has given me to minister to…and just do what God has called me to do. I have to watch the stress and keep my blood pressure low, so I have decided that I will get rid of my deacons, not do counseling, never watch the news, never “assemble” anything, stay off the freeways, etc…lol!!! Just kidding…kinda. And, I am pretty sure I can get a “prescription” for a Harley now too…?? Anyways…that is what I know today…I will let you know if anything changes.