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Old 11-22-2009, 03:41 PM   #1
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Need to vent a little... Pneumonia/H1N1/mis-diagnosis

I just don't know what to do for treatment w/ the way today's health system is ran...

I was diagnosed with Pneumonia on the 4th of this month by Medcare Express, which is a fast paced urgent care facility here in Charleston. I chose this place due to a ton of people giving them praise over how well they practice. Iroically, the night before I was exposed to some sort of Chemical fume that made me feel out of it. I deal with alot of was water and alot of solvents, such as Dichloromethane, Hexane, Ether, Acetone, Methanol and so on. I also do water extractions on high PCB(>50ppm) and high Radioactive waters to test for things such as low level pests, herbs, and anything else that may be abnormal.

Anyhow, The reason I decided to go in and get checked out was due to me generally feeling winded and having a hard time getting a deep fulfillng breath. I had also been feeling down on energy for a week or so before this, but did not pay much attention to this. I also noticed I had black cirlces under my eyes on the 1st of this month, but did not pay any attention to this. I still have these to this day and can't figure it out.

Well within 30 minutes the PA administered his examination on me and ordered an X-ray... 15 minutes after that they ordered an Albuterol breathing treatment, flu swab, strep swab, steriod shot, and an antibiotic shot due to "a little pneumonia" in my right lung. So I leave the office and make my way home with my new antibiotics. (Doxycycline) My O2 Sat. was 98-99 btw.

The 6th rolls around and I am still not feeling any better, I have the chills, sweats, shortness of breath, nausea, fatigue, and major malasie. I decide to go back in... this time I see an actual doctor and get the same treatments, minus the shots. The X-ray confirms that the pneumonia has not gotten worse, but has not improved. So he checks my O2 level (98) and Peak Flow, which are great... he ends up putting me on a stronger antibiotic(Azithromyacin) and sends me on my way. I will say that stuff KNOCKED ME OFF MY FETT... I felt like someone punched me in my stomach for the next 5 days!

So on the 8th I was still having a hard time getting a deep fulfilling breath, I got fed up and had a bit of an anxiety attack, went back and got some Xanax perscribed which leveled me out for the time being. I began feeling a little better later in that week, but still had no energy or drive to do anything. I was noticing more and more deep breaths so I was feeling good about eveything. My O2 sat was still 98-99...

On the 11th I went back in because I was having issues with what seemed to be a sinus infection or a bad cold. This cae out of no where... I have a zore throat, my head was killing my and my sinus were completely blocked. Anyhow, they took another x-ray only to see the pneumonia was still there, despite my symptoms getting better, this was also my last day of zpak anitbiotic. The doc told me that sometimes it will linger, but I will eventually cough all the gunk up over the next few days and that I should be back to work by this coming monday. I was soooo happy to hear this. Although I was still short of breath with an 02 Sat of 98-99.

Well today the 14th rolls around, I tryed to go out to for lunch and catch a movie with the G/F... boy was that a mistake. By the time we left lunch I was so weak I had to go home and sleep... I was feeling worse than ever. I decided I wanted another opinion over the people at medcare express so I went to the ER at Summerville Medical Center. Hey, it's why I pay for insurance right?

I get there around 8:30 and tell them I have had pneumonia and that I wasn't feeling well. Within 5 minutes I had a mask on my face, had my vitals taken and was in a room. Talk about speedy! Everyone was looking at me like I had H1N1 or something, LOL.

The doc comes in and talks to me about everything... He listends to my lungs and said they were clear as could be! We continued to review my vitals (pre-hypertension, HR and normal O2 sat.), go over my symptoms, over all conditon, and past antibiotic use. Turns out he thinks I did have FlU/H1N1!! Well what do I think now??! I am being old two different things! I had passed 3 different flu swabs at the other place so how could this be true?? Well he claims the swab gives a false negative 90% of the time from what he has studied in all his FLU/H1N1 cases. He himself just got over it and had also tested negative with the swab... It some what made sense as to me, no wonder my antibiotics were not working as quickly as usual.

He then tells me how Medcare Express is a cash cow and they send people to them all the time with misdiagnosis and that he wouldn't be suprised if I did not have Pneumonia at all! He offerend to do more swabs, blood work, and x-rays if I wanted him to, but he said it wasn't needed in his opinion. So it looks like I would be out of work for a few more days as I try to kick this.

At this point I guess I got H1N1/Flu from my sister, who had it three weeks before I got sick, followed by a minor case of middle lobe pneumonia.

During this whole time my BP was showing signs of pre-hypertension and a slightly elevated heart rate. I do monitor this on my own... It's usually 120/70ish with a HR of 75ish. Well now I am seeing a 130-40/80ish BP with a HR in the high 90's. I have also lost about 8-10lbs since I have been on bed rest.

Well the 18th rolls around and I try to go to work... I get there and I am weak as can be and am still VERY short of breath. I end up leaving and going to another ER near my Lab. They do a ton of bloodwork and X-rays. Turns out that my lungs are clear, no more pnuemonia in the xray, but my white cell count was up around 12000. Which indicates I may be fighting a virus. That doctor thinks it's something viral and asks me to follow up with my PCP.

On the 19th I go to see m PCP and explain all of this to him. He seems to think the lingering SOB and weakness is all related to chemical exposure and has nothing to do with Flu/H1N1/Pneumonia. So he referes me to a Pulmonary specialist, who still has not contacted me with an appointment. I don't know what to think from here on out. I don't know what I could have or what it will take to make me better... I am starting to get very discouraged beacuse I am still weak, I don't feel 100%, I still have black circles under my eyes and my finger nails are still a little darker than normal(not blue though). I did have some pain in my legs, but was check for clots via D-dimer and physical examination.

Could these symptoms really be lingering over from pneumonia/H1N1/Flu? Or could my PCP be right about chemical exposure? I am very nervous about seeing a specialist... I just want this all to pass and get back to my normal life! I have seen 4 different Dr.'s and a PA and I just don't know what to think anymore.

Thanks for listening and any input will be greatly apppreciated! I hoope everyone out there is doing well!

Matt

Last edited by Matthew103; 11-22-2009 at 04:22 PM.

 
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Old 11-22-2009, 06:02 PM   #2
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

I am so sorry you have been through all this. I hope the pulmonologist can get to the bottom of it for you. Keep in mind that asthma can be caused by some strains of pneumonia - that's how I ended up with it at age 50 - and so can exposure to the irritants that you listed.

 
Old 11-22-2009, 06:28 PM   #3
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Thanks for taking the time to read my story, it sure has been one heck of a ride. I am hoping it's not asthma... although, it seems like my Ventolin Inhaler does not help the symptoms. My biggest fear is that I may have developed something like COPD... That would be a HUGE impact on my at 22 years young.

I kind of wish someone could just tell me what I have/had. It's driving me nuts. I am finally going to try and go back to work tomorrow, after 3 weeks of being at home and in bed. I need to wake up early and PUSH the specalist to sched. me an appt. I do not want to go untreated any longer.

 
Old 11-22-2009, 06:45 PM   #4
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

And COPD as well...do push for the pulmonologist. I think that's your best bet. Good luck!

 
Old 11-22-2009, 07:40 PM   #5
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Thanks for the well wishes! I will update this as soon as I see the specialist... which I hope is tomorrow or Tuesday. If it means anything my peak flow was around 670 when I was at my sickest. I hope that was a good sign and that maybe I am still gunked up from whatever I had, even after weeks.

I am open to anyone elses stories/experiences with pneumonia/asthma/flu/shortness of breath. Thanks guys and gals!

 
Old 11-23-2009, 12:49 PM   #6
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Spend 2 1/2 hours with the lung doctor today. Had a ton of function tests done, X-rays, EKG's and so forth. I definitely have some sort of inflamation in my bronchial tubes, although we are not sure if its been there, if its from chem exposure or from Pneumonia. My PFT's were a little low but they did not say that I had anything such as COPD or Asthma. I have to go back in two weeks for another x-ray and get some blood work done tomorrow. I am also on two inhalers twice a day for the next 2 weeks.

On a good note, today has been one of the best days since I came down with what ever I have! I a actuallly about to head to work for the first time in 3 weeks. I really hope I continue to recove, although it has been a slow process.
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Old 11-23-2009, 08:59 PM   #7
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

So it turns out that two other guys that were exposed to the chemicals the night of my original SOB also have some symptoms... mainly fatigue and not feeling like themselves. I wonder if it could actually end up being something neurological. I am also concerned about needing legal representation at this point. I have noticed it is very hard for me to concentrate and I feel as if I am in a brain fog. I noticed I am a little shakey.

Then again we could all have a virus and be sick... but wouldn't someone be better by now? No one has any sort of relief. There are just too many variables.
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Old 11-27-2009, 12:30 PM   #8
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

SOB is slowly subsiding... maybe it was from pneumonia
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Old 12-26-2009, 10:40 AM   #9
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Tested positive for Mycoplasma on the 10th of this month. Doctor also told me my IgG was high and that I may develop asthma later in life. I have been feeling better over the last few weeks and have been back to work! Although, the last few days I have been some what short of breath... I think it's related to anxiety though. The Doc seems to think my case is mild enough to resolve on my own, but he gave me a 21 day course of Doxycycline just in case.

Anyone have any experience with this?
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Old 12-27-2009, 08:56 AM   #10
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

I haven't had any experience with this but I hope you feel better! I really hope it resolves on it's own for you. I went through bacterial pneumonia once (inhaled dry wall dust from work) and even after the "infection" was gone it was weeks before I felt "ok". I was on an inhaler for awhile. I don't have anxiety so that probably helped.
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Old 12-31-2009, 02:47 PM   #11
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Finally I am here and reading that I am not the only one with this horrible pneumonia. 2 weeks ago I started feeling sick... sore throat, slight fever, like 99, achy & tired... no energy at all. I go to the dr. on Dec. 17 had a flu test which came up negative.... and it was decided that I had a sinus infection... got Biaxin and went home. By Sat. Dec. 18 my fever was at 101.5 (anything over 98.4 is a fever to me) and Sunday Dec. 19 I was even worse. Honestly, I thought I was dying... could not breathe. Hated to go to the hospital, but now in retrospect, I should have gone as soon as I saw the high fever. Monday morning I am back at my Urgent care doc... whom I happen to love, he's fantastic. Sent me for a chest xray and discovered I had multi focal pneumonia - both lungs. Immediately he wanted me to go to the hospital, but agreed to let me try & recover at home. my husband had just returned from Iraq, and I wanted to be with him. So he put me on Levaquin 750 & zithromax... worked great, but 5 days was not long enough and I started to get a fever again. So just this week, on the 28th I started 7 days of Levaquin and another round of zithromax. I have NEVER been this sick in my life... see my name? Turbogirl... I'm always on the move. This last visit to the dr. he thinks I had H1N1 - and the test he did the week before was a false negative. I know its not just pneumonia that I had... I have congestion in my head, and am always blowing my nose... ears are bothering me a bit too. A big concern is the scarring and irregular nodules that were noted from the chest xray. What does that mean!??? My doc also wants me to see a pulmonologist soon... (assuming that I recover from this and don't end up in the hospital) I did call the 2 he recommended but they are booked until March 90th. No room for new patients. Hate that, I'll be calling all over next week.

Just wanted to share my story... I am still pretty scared... please throw a prayer or 2 up there for me.

Last edited by Turbogirl05; 12-31-2009 at 02:48 PM.

 
Old 01-01-2010, 05:48 AM   #12
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Matthew I have been just following your story and I can't believe how sick you have been and no one really knows what was going on.

It makes you wonder how much any of these tests tell anything when it comes down to it. I wish you to get better and if your friends at work are going through what you are?
I wish you better by this time?

 
Old 01-01-2010, 06:14 AM   #13
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Re: Need to vent a little Pneumonia/H1N1/???

Keep in mind that pneumonia can take quite a while to get over...not a few days thing. And it also sounds like you may have a head cold or sinus infection a well. All this will take several weeks to totally clear. Seeing a pulmonologist is an excellent idea. The lung irregularities could be damage from the pneumonia. A check to see if any permanent damage has been done ( i.e., asthma) is very much called for. Hang in!

 
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