Posted 5/21/2015 2:41 PM (GMT -6)
Hello everyone. It's been a few years since I've been on this site. I joined it in 2006, kept up with it for a few years, life got real busy and now decided I would join in again and just needed some support. So here is my story with regards to my husband Robert.
December 2005 is when he was diagnosed with ESLD/Alcoholic Cirrhosis. He almost lost his life. He was a beer drinker at the age of 16-17 years old. He was 40 years old when he became ill and is now 50 years old. He was feeling sick the day after Christmas in 2005. He slept on the couch and took a long nap that day. He woke to go to the bathroom and all of a sudden he just collapsed. Kind of went in and out of it for a while. I called the paramedics. When they got there, he was awake but not quite with it. They told him to relax and he started to feel ok. He then got up to use the bathroom again and collapsed again. This time the paramedics saw him do it and luckily were near him to catch him. They took him into the ER and all of sudden within minutes of him arriving there, he started to bleed through his mouth like he was puking his guts out. I had no idea what was going on and by the looks of my husband face, he was in complete shock of what was happening. This proceeded to happen for quite a while until they were able to stabilize him. They rushed him to the ICU and said, this is going to take awhile, we need to work on saving his life because we are not sure he's going to survive the night. Oh my goodness.. that was the last thing on earth I wanted to hear much less expect not knowing anything about how our entire life was going to change.
he survived, thank the lord but with a really rough road ahead. He remained in the hospital for about 6-7 days. He came home and required 24/7 care for about 3 months. Well it has now been almost 10 years since his illness and he is almost 10 years sober praise the lord. But I'm here to tell you, it sure has not been easy, there have many many ups and downs, there has been many struggles, disappointments, happiness and most recently some unexpected news. He has doctors that monitor him very closely. He is on the Liver Transplant List though Mayo Clinic in Arizona. He's been listed for about 7 years now. His MELD score fluctuates between 13-16 every 90 days. We live in New Mexico so he travels to Arizona every 6 months for monitoring and to see his doctors there. He has his GI doctor in New Mexico as well, we live about 2 hours from that doctor. He continues to have upper and lower GI bleeds, requires banding, he's developed diabetes, portal vein hypertension, anxiety, high ammonia levels at times, pains in lower abdomen and as you can imagine the list goes on and on. But with all things considered, he manages to have more better days than bad days. He usually ends up in the hospital for a "tune-up" as he calls it at least a few times a year as well as his regular doctor follow-ups, procedures and testing. This is pretty much what the last 10 years has been like. Well, now, we have a twist in all of this that is causing a bit of worry. He had a visit to Mayo Clinic in early May 2015. Went through all his routine labs, MRI's and follow-up with the doctor. At the meeting, the doctor told us that he has portal vein hypertension which is basically a blood clot in the vein but along with that, the MRI is also showing a "Hyper Enhancement". Well when we asked what that means, it's very vague at this time but still a little something to worry about. They said that most of the time when hyper enhancements show up on a MRI, that could be something or nothing with regards to developing a mass around the area which could lead into possible cancer. However, at this time, there are NO tumors indicating that is what it is now. So he has to go back in August 2015 to get monitored and keep checking it out every 3 months instead of every 6 months. So, what we think is happening is something is going on otherwise they would have said something within the last 7 years that we've been going to Mayo. We think that a mass is possibly growing and by monitoring it every 3 months, they will find it and hopefully figure out a path forward. They said there is nothing they can do about the portal vein having the blood clot because he is a risk meaning he is high risk with GI bleeds. So they will do nothing about that unless he were to get a liver transplant, they would manually remove the blood clot at that time. So we have this "Hyper Enhancement" that we have to worry about in the back of our minds. Well, it's going to be a long summer is all I have to say kind of thinking about that off and on. So I guess what I want to know is, is there anyone on here that has had to deal with this "Hyper Enhancement" showing up on an MRI?