So if you’ve been following my story (and for the sake of this article I’m going to assume you have), you know that over the summer of 2019 I was diagnosed with IgA Nephropathy, a disease that while considered rare compared to some of the sexier diseases, is also the third leading cause of Chronic Kidney Disease (after Diabetes and High Blood Pressure).
Having been diagnosed with a disease I knew little about, yet knowing it can and often does have serious implications for the patient long-term, my first reaction was, well, paralysis. This was my first time being faced with a life altering – and potentially life threatening – disease. This was the sort of thing that only happens to other people, not me. I always assumed I was going to go out the same way I had lived – in a blaze of stupidity. Like falling down an exposed manhole in busy downtown Haverhill. Or being attacked by a hungry black bear (also in busy downtown Haverhill for some odd reason). Getting taken out by a disease? That’s for other people.
The Big Reveal
In my previous article I left you on a bit of a cliffhanger. While I told you about my diagnosis of Chronic Kidney Disease, I didn’t tell you how I got it. In this article I’ll discuss what my suspected diagnosis was and what we ultimately found out based on my biopsy results. Some questions got answered, only to be followed by more questions.
I walked into my physician’s office for my six month checkup not really expecting it to be any different than it had been for the past few years. Lose weight. Take your cholesterol meds. Stay on your blood pressure medication. I expected the instructions to be the same. Outside of my weight issue and the fact that my blood pressure – which I never had any problems with before – had suddenly shot up before the last visit, I was actually in pretty good health. I was beginning to lose weight, albeit rather slowly. I didn’t take drugs and I drank moderately at most. What could go wrong?
Everything went pretty much according to script.
Until we got to the end.