Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Can You Say , "Blessed!"?

My last post was about Don's having hiccups for three days running. He still had them when we went to ALS Clinic on Friday for his every-three-month evaluation. While we were there, however, they stopped. The neurologist affirmed that he was experiencing a symptom of the ALS, but could give us no more information than that.

Well, I have some information for her. After being so weak for those three days that I had to use the lift or the gator belt several times to transfer him, last evening he had me help him onto the mower so he could mow the yard! Now that the hiccups have gone away, his strength has returned. He's right back where he was before Wednesday, when the hiccuping began.

I HATE the hiccups, and I've never had them anywhere as long as Don had them. It's no wonder his body was exhausted. No matter. He was almost as high in his breathing tests at Clinic on Friday as he had been the two times before. That tells me that he's holding his own amazingly well.

Blessed? You betcha! Thankful? Over the top!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Who Knew?

Don rarely has the hiccups. I can probably count the number of times on one hand that he's hicced in the 45 years we've been married. That all changed this past Wednesday. He started hiccuping right after lunch at about 1 p.m. and continued right on through the evening until about 1 a.m. They would leave for 15 or 20 minutes, then come right back.

I knew something unusual was going on, so, of course, I Googled it. Right there, in one of my searches, it explained that persistent hiccups are a seldom-seen symptom of the respiratory involvement of ALS. Who knew?

We had ALS Clinic today, which is a several hour affair. Don had gotten the hiccups early in the morning and still had them while we were at Clinic. Some of the techs there were telling him different things to try to relieve the torment of continuous hiccups, and they were all quite surprised when I told them of my research and find. Our last visit of the day was with his neurologist, who is renown for her knowledge of ALS. She confirmed that Don's hiccups were, indeed, an uncommon symptom of the progression of the disease. She said, however, that she had NEVER seen the symptom in any other of her patients.

I think this is one time Don would have preferred to have been a part of the status quo. The hiccups drive him crazy, and it's nearly impossible to sleep soundly with someone who is hiccing. Maybe this will be short-lived. Hope so!