Drop Dead Fred – the history and the now.
Well being a girl sometimes sucks! So I just got word that drop dead Fred is back. Let me tell you a little about drop dead Fred: for years, decades really, I have been suffering with a pain in my stomach, pelvic and lower back. Yeah try determining what your affliction is with the 3 most common areas of pain. Every few months I would get severe pain and it would literally feel like I was carrying something inside my pelvic area. But everytime I went to the Dr and she would do a pap and the “press test” where they press on your ovaries and uterus and well hey “everything’s normal”!! I started to think I was either crazy or I was dealing with something else entirely, which led to a multitude of misdiagnosis, waste of money, and prescriptions that never needed to be taken in the first place! That is until I was finally referred by a coworker to the very awesome Dr. Alwan, OBGYN. I never thought about going to an OBGYN since my family dr always did my yearly physical and I have no children, nor any desire for them. Well first visit to Dr. Alwan they performed an ultrasound and as soon as the “wand” moved around my left ovary, both Chris (my soulmate) and myself pointed and shouted at the screen “WHAT IS THAT!?” Well THAT was a cyst, something that is common, very normal for a woman my age to have. But the level of pain I was experiencing was not normal. So Dr. Alwan and I decided to have surgery to remove the cyst. whats called a laparoscopy. This was March of 2013. Turned out I ended up having 4 cysts on my right ovary and 2 on the left. So Dr. Alwan drained them, common practice, sewed me up and I was good to go. He did inform me that there is no guarantee that they won’t return, in fact, typically surgery is a last resort not a first but since I have been in debilitating pain for close to a decade he wanted to go in and see for himself what he was dealing with. Typically the OBGYN will put you on birth control pills. Which I’ve been on since the age of 16. So obviously THAT was not helping me. I decided after the surgery to get the IUD, now I knew that the IUD would not prevent the cysts from coming back but I was hoping that it would help. I never in a million years thought I would be right back at square one a year and a half later! And in fact its worse!
Sept 15, exactly one week after the first day of my last period, which was completely normal, I started bleeding again! I wasn’t feeling right a few days leading up to this so I thought I was getting sick, well after seeing blood I freaked out and called the Dr office right away. They squeezed me in for the next day to see an OBGYN on staff, not Dr. Alwan. Well she did her thing, I did a urine sample/pap, and the ever present “press test” and of course “everything is fine” in fact everything “seemed” so fine she was 99% convinced I had a kidney infection! well I was, and still am, experiencing some very bad back pains, specifically on my right side. But because I wanted some piece of mind concerning my IUD, see I still wasn’t thinking DDF was back, I was thinking my IUD must be causing these problems somehow, she ordered an ultrasound to “locate” my IUD. That was scheduled for the following Monday morning. I barely made it thru the weekend without going to the ER, the pain had gotten so bad and I’m now convinced its because of a server kidney infection. So Monday morning Chris and I go to Dr. Alwans office. The ultrasound is going well until the wand moves to a certain spot, again, and again I’m in pain. As soon as I said something the tech starting measuring and taking stills very rapidly. and I still didn’t think it was DDF. She said she saw something that could be causing me pain and that I’m not on the Dr’s schedule today but she will try and push me thru so he can take a quick look and give me some piece of mind. Still thought nothing of it, in fact I thought he was going to come in and say “you are all good, nothing to worry about, everything is fine, its just an infection, here are some antibiotics, your good to go” Well needless to say that is not what happened. He confirmed that Drop Dead Fred is back and I have a major problem with ovarian cysts. I have 3 options: 1. Take painkillers and just manage the pain, 2. Take birth control pills ONTOP of having the IUD, 3. Remove the ovaries. Well I was in shock! But I knew what I had to do. The painkillers are great for when I deal with DDF at night or on the weekends but what about Mon-Fri when I’m at work, pain management is not a way to live. Taking birth control on top of having the IUD is out of the question! I feel the birth control has done nothing in the last 20 years so why continue with that! No the only solution is having my ovaries removed! And even though I knew this option was always there, and in fact I would always joke about just get rid of them already, I never thought that I would have to make that decision in such a short time! I thought I would have at least 3 years before dealing with the possibility of DDF again! but nope he reared his ugly face again and it only took a year and half!!
So I’ve scheduled my surgery for November 11th, with pre op on November 3rd, and thank god too, since this past 3 weeks have been a living hell for me and the worst period I have ever experienced in my life, its as if Drop Dead Fred knows his time is almost up!!
Now its October 24th and here we go again! My right ovary is so swollen or the cyst is so big that you can see it thru my skin. Its a big lump and it hurts and its causing severe pain in my lower back, hip, and leg again. So it looks like right on cue, DDR is filling up and its probably going to burst again, less than a month later. At least now I’m prepared, I know what to expect, and I’m not afraid! The next three weeks will be hell, but it will be my hell to endure in order to come out on the other side victorious and Drop Dead Fred is no more!!!