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All about news and updates of the (MMO)RPG games I play and general news that I deem important enough

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Scan okay, but...
29 November 2014
Posted in About me
Last Thursday I went to the cardiologist for the results of the nuclear scan 2 weeks ago. The scan didn't show anything odd. My heart gets enough oxygen, the pumping function is okay and the valves are okay as well. This means that (once again) I'm 100% healthy, but I do experience pressure on the chest when I'm physically active...

The cardiologist has no clue either. She also opted that the pressure of the chest might becoming from my stomach, but that's not the case - no problems there at all. Since the nitro spray does give some relieve to the pressure, she decided to give me it in a pill form that'll work all day. Of course, I do need to keep the spray with me at all times in case I'll get the pressure on my chest again.
An other good thing of the cardiologist is that because she's stuck with my case, she's asking a colleague to take a (fresh) look at my case for something she might have missed.

I also mentioned that the cramping muscle ache and fatigue in my legs is starting to get worse. It's the same pain and fatigue I had when my B12 was short, and my own doctor said that it should not get worse and might be a side effect of the cholesterol medication I'm getting. The cardiologist thinks the same and I don't have to take those meds any more.

In the mean time I'm stuck with a severe headache (that's why I didn't post this earlier) because of the new nitro meds I'm taking. This headache should be there only the first couple of days and I hope it indeed will fade early next week. I've had already more than enough headaches the last couple of years and I was more than happy that the last weeks the headaches were gone thanks to the B12 injections...

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Medical update...
07 November 2014
Posted in About me
Last couple of weeks (months) I haven't been writing a lot on the blog because I've been pretty tired because of the B12 shortage. Though it's already treated, the fatigue is still there and my doctor said it'd most likely take 2-3 months before the worst fatigue will be gone...

With my last appointment with my doctor last Tuesday, I mentioned the fatigue that's still there and the extreme sleepyness I now have as well. The sleepyness is new though. One moment I'm awake and the next one I'm about to doze off in a very deep slumber. As said above, the fatigue will stay a bit, but the sleepyness is not a side effect of the B12. The doctor suspected one of the heart medications is the cause (which is not, will tell that later on). Concerning the B12, I've had my 10 shots now twice a week, and should go into a monthly shot cycle now. But with the extreme shortage I've had and still being fatigued, the doctor decided to start on a bi-weekly cycle for the B12 the coming months.
There's also good news on the B12 treatment. The last couple of weeks, the severe headache that I used to have has been gone. Okay, I've had a 'normal' headache once or twice, but I think that's fairly normal. because of it I've bought jellybeans for tonight to see if I get a headache of it or not - it might have been the B12 playing up along with the jellybeans in the past

Then the cardio... I had a phone-appointment with her last Wednesday, and she said that none of the medications she proscribed can cause the sleepyness I have right now. Where the pharmacist said that the beta-blocker could cause it, she isn't familiar with it. She did give me the choice to stop using it, but when doing so, the heart cramps might come back more severe, and I don't think that's worth it to remove the sleepyness...
Mentioning the heart cramps... Yes, I still have them, but not as much and severe as before. The cardiologist is glad about it, but still isn't happy about it. She now wants to know what's causing it and has put me on the list for a nuclear heart-scan.

The next day (yesterday) I was called by the hospital about the heart-scan (which will be next Thursday) to prepare for it. Do I smoke? My height, my weight and that kind of stuff. Then the instructions and time I had to be there. Well, the whole day before the scan I'm not allowed to take any caffeine holding drinks and food And I have to be in the hospital at 9am.
WHAT 9am? That can't be! The evening before I'm going to a concert with my brother in Amsterdam, and I'm not sure I'll make the last train home in time. Or if I have it (12.30am), it'll be a hell of a slow ride in one of the most uncomfortable trains they could find...

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Medication working or not?
19 October 2014
Posted in About me
I'm now 5 days on the new medication and I'm still not sure if it's working or not. Okay, it's quite early to judge medication in 5 days, but I should at least already notice something from it.

First things first... The B12 injections do have effect already. I've noticed that the day I've received it and the day after, I feel more energetic than before. This while the fatigue in my legs is still there, but clearly less than before I started with the B12 injections. Down side though is that when the B12 is 'used up' by my body, the fatigue is back and worse than before

Then the new beta blocker for my heart. Well, can't judge it's working yet for the simple reason that I'm taking it low on physical exercises. How ever, I can tell that the light-headedness (and thus low blood pressure) is far less than with the other beta blocker I used initially. And speaking above above the worse fatigue when the B12 is 'used up', the beta blocker is known to cause fatigue as well, so I'm uncertain if this is a side effect from the beta blocker or a lack of B12 (my guess is the first...)

Then the other two meds I'm taking. They're to let the heart get enough oxygen to keep beating. Much like the beta blocker (taking it against heart cramps caused by low/lack of oxygen), I can't really tell if it's working.

However, while I say I do avoid physical exercise, I am taking some from time to time. The visits to the doctor I did by bike, I am walking the dog with my wife, and do grocery shoppings. Though these exercises are not that stressful, they do do give me a bit of pressure on the chest. Mostly when taking a bit of rest it fades and I can keep going....

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Hospital/cardio visit
15 October 2014
Posted in About me
I've been to the hospital yesterday to visit the cardiologist and it was a fruitful visit. What my doctor suspected has been confirmed and I 'suffer' from heart cramps, but I also seem to have low blood pressure (both aside from that extra heartbeat that my heart gives every 10-15 seconds).

The day started early for me (awake at 6am as usual) and at 9am I had to be in the hospital. Because I've had a heart cramp a week ago, I decided to leave home early so I could cycle slowly if needed. Not to mention, I also had to check if my data at the hospital's computers was still correct.

First an EGG was made of my heart and was a pretty short stop - in about 10 minutes I was in and out of that examination room. Next up was the cardiologist. I had to explain to her what happened last week and what the exact problems are that I have. Well, pressure on the chest and a pain in the upper left shoulder with at times pain and numbness in the left arm & hand.

After that I had an echo of my heart. Though not painful, it was quite uncomfortable when the echo-sonic had to take a 'peek' from the bottom of my heart and the device was almost pushed under my ribs
Having had the echo, the treadmill (well, bike) was on for me. Last time I had it (3 years ago or so) I could not complete the test and thus no results came from it, though I had the same symptoms back then. This time I could complete it, but I really did feel the pressure on my chest as well as being very light headed. Well, the light-headedness was to be expected because during the whole test my blood pressure remained too low for the exercise I was doing and as a result I had to take a pretty long cool down to avoid my blood pressure to plummet and me to faint...

Back at the cardiologist I had the results, and indeed (as I started this post), my heart gives cramps during physical stress. She also pointed out that my cholesterol is a bit high (as it's always been in my life). As a precaution she gave me a couple of medications. An other beta blocker (which also lowers the blood pressure, but it seems that after 2 pills I don't have it as bad as the previous beta blocker I had), cholesterol lowering pills and stomach protectors. She also told me that I need to have that nitro-spray with me at all times (an other discipline to get used to).

Right now I have quite a stack of medication here at my PC desk so that I can't forget to take them in the morning, and I have also set my cellular phone's alarm at 10pm each evening for the cholesterol pill (that really is one I'd forget if not reminded to take ).

I also have a phone appointment with the cardiologist on November 5th to see how I'm doing with the new medication and see if I've had cramps in the mean time...

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B12 rollercoaster
12 October 2014
Posted in About me
It's been 10 days now and 3 injections since my B12 deficiency has been diagnosed and my body has been on a rollercoaster since that (hence the low post-rate last week...)

First and for most, last Sunday my body had a real severe reaction because of the huge input of B12 in my system (or at least my doctor thinks that's the reason). That day I was on my 2nd full day of that cluster-alike headache that I have, but this time the headache really went from bad to worse instead of slowly vanishing. With that I also had a higher heartbeat and felt a slight pressure on my chest.
So I decided to call the emergency doctor's post and they asked me to get over there. I went by bike, which normally would take me about 10 minutes, but because I didn't feel too well I decided to take it slow. When I was about halfway, my left hand started to tingle (like I sat on it for quite a  while) and my left arm itself started to ache a bit. By the time I got at the post I was extremely light headed and my left hand was close to totally numb.
The doctor there did her exams and all seems clear, though my blood pressure was a bit on the high side. She gave me a puff of nitrolingual spray and after about 10 minutes the pressure on my chest and numbness in my hand faded. She sent me home with some medication and told me to visit my own doctor the next day.

Monday I visited my own doctor. Though I didn't have any real pressure on the chest, I was severely light headed. He took my blood pressure and in contrast to the day before this time the pressure as pretty low and I had to stop using one of the medicines I was given the day before (I took only 1 pill of it - an allergic reaction?).
My doctor also explained that most likely the problems with my heart the day before might be cause because of the sudden influx of B12 and having used it all up again and my heart missing it already. But because he thinks my B12 deficiency has been going on for years, he didn't want to take any chances and made an appointment with the cardio at the hospital for next Tuesday...

Then the 3 injections itself... Yeah, they are painful when injected and I'd much rather have a tetanus injection. B12 is a bit of acid based and that's what makes it painful AND it has to be injected in a large muscle (yeah my butt).
Within a couple of hours after the injection most of the fatigue I've been experiencing is gone for the next 24 hours or so. After the B12 is used up by my body, the fatigue comes back and more severe as I used to have it before. Though this is normal, when I doze off the 'sleep' I experience is very deep and it takes me quite some time to 'get back to the living' with my brains still being sleep drunk when I've woken up.

I have also tried to do some grocery shopping yesterday, and that didn't go too well either. Though I didn't feel too tired, I did experience the pressure on my chest again. Luckily it wasn't overly hard, and taking a break when walking (didn't go by bike on purpose) would ease the pressure again. I think that's a clear sign that my body still is busy recovering from the long period of B12 deficiency...

In general I think (hope) that in the long run the B12 injections will help me to get on with my life on a pretty normal way. I hope the side effects like I experience them now are only temporarily and will vanish all together, but only time can tell...

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08 October 2014
Posted in About me
Okay, I'm not the kind of guy who stands on the scale every couple of weeks, or even every couple of months. We have a scale, but the last time I stood on it was about 2 years ago or so. Then my weight was around 100kg. It might sound like a lot, but with my 1.88m height it's not overly much overweighted (only about 10kg).

That was 2 years ago. This morning I stood on the scale again and found out that my current weight is 105kg. I was kinda in a shock, and yet I expected it. I mean, my jeans are just a bit tighter and that's not because they shrunk On the other hand, having a physically active job I was hoping I did loose some weight already and would be around 95 like I said to the doctor last weekend...

On the other hand, having gained some weight was what I could have expected. Being extremely tired (without knowing of the B12 deficiency I have), I've been eating a lot the last 2 years to counter the fatigue I had a lot. Though now knowing that all the extra food (and candy ) didn't help, I think it's only a miracle that I gained so little over the last 2 years.

And now..? Well, I don't think I'll change a lot. With in the near future my body (hopefully) becoming less fatigued, I guess my input of food will lessen as well. Hoping to work with the Dutch postal service for years to come, I'll loose that 5 extra kilos quickly enough and I even might finally hit the 90kg I wanted to hit a long time ago as well

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Severe B12 shortage
02 October 2014
Posted in About me
This morning I had the results of the 2nd bloodtest and there were finally some results! Though they're not the ones that'd make me happy and even the doctor's assistant was surprised by them...

The vitamin D was okay in my blood, but that was to be expected, with me having a job with the Dutch postal service PostNL. But the vitamin B12 and Folic acid seemed to be the problem. And what kind of problem, the values were extremely low the assistant said.

After having done a small wikipedia search, I found out that both B12 and Folic acid are both very important for the body for creating (copying?) DNA and red blood cells. And without red blood cells being made (or made in very low quantities), it's no wonder I was tired like hell.

Now there's a problem though... How the hell did I get this extreme shortage of B12 and folic acid? Both are found in daily products (of which I take enough on a weekly basis), B12 is found in meet (again, I eat enough of that, though not too much) and folic acid is found in beans and green vegetables, and that I eat  as well in good quantities. So it clearly is not my diet to blame...

For now I've been put on a proscription of folic acid tablets (one a day) and the coming month a B12 shot weekly (tomorrow the first one) and after that the shot will be monthly. And while I'm at the doctor tomorrow, I'll ask how this shortage could have occurred, and how I can avoid it in the future. I just hope this won't be a chronic condition forcing me to get these shots and pills (though both seemingly harmless) for the rest of my life....

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Bloodwork is okay
25 September 2014
Posted in About me
Last week I wrote that I'd go to the doctor for the extreme tiredness I have the last couple of months already. I actually went the next day, and I was sent to the blood lab for a generic screening. Sadly though that day and the one following I could not go, so I went last Friday to the blood lab.

This morning I called the doctor (or rather his assistant) for the results and according to my blood I'm as healthy as one can be. All is within normal margins and close to the 'perfect average'. The haemoglobin is on the perfect 9, kidney, liver and thyroid gland are all working perfectly. Basically there's nothing in my blood according to this global screening that's pointing directly to extreme tiredness.

There's also the Epstein-Barr virus that I've had a couple of years ago. I mentioned that to the assistant and she thinks it's not worth to test it again to see if it's active now (more a cost issue which I have to pay for). But the assistant did come up with a possible vitamin (D) shortage. For that I now have an appointment with the doctor tomorrow morning and see what he thinks of it. And perhaps I can persuade him for a new Epstein-Barr test, after all, I keep hearing that it can become active after having been dormant for years...

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It was not the jelly beans
14 September 2014
Posted in About me
Earlier this month I decided to stop eating jelly beans because I thought the sugar in them might give me a sugar rush.
We're now 10 days further and I can say for sure that the sugar rush isn't actually causing the tiredness problems that I'm experiencing. But I am sure that I am intolerant for too much sugar, because since I stopped eating jelly beans (and a lot of other high-sugar products), the severe headaches haven't been around so often any more.

The one thing that's still there is the extreme tiredness though. And honestly, the tiredness is getting worse and worse. Where in the past I had to take a small rest during the day (mostly an hour after work by lying on the couch), now I actually fall asleep during that rest (even when I'm actively busy) and during the evenings at one moment I just can't keep my eyes open any more (mostly around 10) and fall asleep. It even has already happened a couple of times that I was playing games on the computer and from one moment to the other I almost dozed off (I would if I didn't quit right there and lay down on the couch).

I'm sure there's something wrong with me physically now. This tiredness is different than the one from lack of sleep from suffering from Asperger's syndrome and ADD. This tiredness feels more like pure exhaustion after having done extreme physical labour all day long.

Knowing that something is off with me I make an appointment with my doctor tomorrow to start some bloodworks and (hopefully) a full check up. Though fatigue problems always are hard to pinpoint to to the actual cause, I do hope he can pinpoint it in my case...

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Sugar intolerance?
04 September 2014
Posted in About me
Last year I wrote about the sugar rush I might suffer from and resulting tiredness. If you read on (and before), you'll also see more than once that I'm dead tired from time to time. So it was time to test something out on the subject...

2 weeks ago I ate more than the 'normal amount' of jelly beans, which came down to around 1kg (2 buckets). I was suffering from terrible headaches and extreme tiredness again. Last week I stayed 'clean' from jelly beans and both the headaches and tiredness were down to 'normal levels' for me (which would be still terrible for you ).

This Monday I bought an other bucket of jelly beans (I really love them!) and though the headaches didn't come up at once, the tiredness was massive again this week. Yesterday I ate the last jelly beans and today seems to be a pretty normal day again, though there is a slight build up on the headache now (could also be the heath we have here again).

One thing is clear to me. I am intolerant for sugar or any of the other additives (colour & flavour) and I think I should lay down most of the candy from now on. This does sadden me though, because it's o-so good to eat from time to time. I also have to look for alternatives for my sweet teeth. Perhaps rice crackers with jelly will do..?

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