Dear Dr. Nicolson,
Thanks for your time today. We really appreciate your insight and knowledge. A little long-winded on my questions here . . .
I have been plagued my symptoms since the end of February 2008. I still feel that I haven't been provided any resolution from the doctors I have seen as to what is affecting my body. Without a specific timeline to offer, I'll kind of bulk together my history since February and then present the questions that most concern me at this moment. Symptoms: Chest pain, palpitations, heart flutter, shortness of breath, ringing in ears, headaches (mild), irritated eyes, conjunctivitis, vision change (? right eye mainly), sore neck (mainly right side), neck throbbing, tingling in face, sore jaw, sore throat, sore muscles, hip pain, numbness/tingling in feet/legs and arms/fingers, frequent urination, epidimititis, lack of sex drive, prostate slightly enlarged, low fever (but not very often), night sweats (but not very often), malaise feeling, fatigue (but I don't get it real bad),
swollen lymph nodes (sometimes tender - neck, armpits, groin), back pain, abdominal pain, acid reflux, skin rashes, changes in moles (?), bruising (but not too often) The symptoms vary from week to week and day to day. The cardiac-type symptoms and
lymph nodes are probably what I stress over the most. I would like my eyes to return to normal also so I could start wearing contacts again.
Medical tests: Numerous blood tests (multiple CBC's, thyroid, liver, common autoimmune diseases, HIV, etc), urine samples, chest CT, abdomen CT, chest x-rays, lumbar x-ray, EKG's, stress-echo, heart cath, endoscopy, abdomen ultrasound (x2), testicle ultrasound, thyroid ultrasound, brain MRI. Scheduled tests: Another echo, blood work for enzymes causing blood clots in the lungs, colonoscopy/endoscopy, and possibly another abdomen CT. Known findings: High EBV titers, splenomegaly (unchanged for the last two months), low lymphocytes -- sometimes -- but overall lymphocytes in range, epidimititis, prostate slightly enlarged, low testosterone (but it was back in range last time checked) Overall, I pass most of the tests that have been performed on me.
Supplements / medications:
Microbojen (and then Virogen when I run out) - Jernigan's formula, Anti-Neuro Toxin II - Jernigan's formula, Molybdenum - Jernigan's formula, Inderal (prescription for palpitations), Vitamin D3, Multivitamin, Immune support (from Co-Cure doc), Adrenal
support (from Co-Cure doc), Palpitation remedy and sleep aid (from Co-Cure doc, use when needed), Omega-3, CoQ10, Probiotics, Vitamin C, L-Lysine (supposed to suppress
EBV), Various herbal tinctures from my holistic doc, Camu Camu powder, Echinacea (but only because I caught a cold a week ago)
- The swollen spleen probably worries me the most, especially when you read about the causes of it. I have had pain in that area for two months now that comes and goes and I just assume it's my spleen. EBV can cause this, but would CEBV also cause
it? What about CFS? How worried should I be about it?
- Swollen lymph nodes concern me also. I have three I notice the most: one underneath the jaw at the submandibular gland, one right behind the angle of my jaw below the ear, and one in back of the head right below the skull, all three on the right side. I have had my doctors check them out and no one seems concerned about them. They are not painful to touch and kind of stay the same size, probably the size of a pea although I imagine they are the size of an orange. So should EBV or CFS affected nodes be painful to the touch? I don't have the classic symptoms of a lymphoma, but it does concern me when my spleen is also involved.
- I have been offered another CT scan of my abdomen and I'm thinking about asking for the neck also. In your experiences as an oncologist, should I concern myself with getting another CT scan when I have already had a chest and abdomen CT this year? I'm not sure how else to go about getting my spleen checked out further.
- Can a viral infection affect blood pressure? My BP is usually really good. I was at the supermarket just the other day and tried out the BP machine. To my chagrin, my BP was something like 137/89. Maybe the machine was wrong as I was just at the doctor's office the day before.
- Since I am one of those with a myriad of symptoms, I'll have to assume I have some type of systemic intracellular bacterial (and possibly viral) infections to go along with the high EBV titers I do know about. I think I am somewhat unclear as to what doctor might be knowledgeable enough to check for these items. My local doctors are decent, but no one has mentioned the tests that you have. I live in the Denver area, so would I be better suited to find a doctor at a medical campus like CU-Anschutz? Unless we are on death's door, it really is frustrating trying to find a doctor in the know about complicated stuff.
- From a self-help approach, would I be better off trying some antibiotics and then some natural medicine? I've been just going the natural route so far. And are you familiar with Jernigan's supplements, and if so, how do they compare to the Rain Tree brand you mention?