Sunday, May 8, 2011


Just the name HEMOCHROMATOSIS sounds scary. Three weeks ago, after two longs years of not knowing what was wrong with me, I was diagnosed with this...
For the past two weeks, I've had treatments. And...oh my goodness! I feel so much better! But let me back up.
I've felt like crap for two years. Exhausted even after sleeping 12+ hours. Achy joints. Heavy breathing even when I hadn't been exercising. Eyesight diminishing rapidly. I've been to doctor after doctor. Had every test imaginable. Finally, finally, finally -- a diagnosis of hemochromatosis was confirmed. Basically, my body takes too much iron from food. There's no way for a body to get rid of iron, so it stays in the body and gets stored in organs. My liver has been damaged by all this extra iron.
Treatment...the only treatment is phlebotomy. Bloodletting. When I first heard this, I asked if leeches were used, like in medieval times. Nope. Every two weeks I go to a cancer and blood center and see the same staff every time (and I am lucky in this, not everyone is so blessed). I get an IV with fluids to replace the blood that is removed, and then 500ml of blood is taken out. I get dizzy and lightheaded, but that's ok. Because I FEEL BETTER. I'm not so exhausted. My eyesight is still bad. But I feel better.


Emily said...

I saw someone with this on mystery diagnosis! So scary - I am glad that you are feeling better and hope you continue to improve and feel even better (and blog!)

Mindy said...

Jennifer - I had no idea! I am so glad you are feeling better! That is fabulous news! I hope to hear from you more often with this re-discovered energy!