Through one of my favorite endometriosis resources (Endo-Resolved) I found an excellent new doctor in Ogden, Utah. His name is Dr. Jeff Arrington and he is an endometriosis specialist. For those who don't know, although women's specialists are pretty common, finding one who specializes in endometriosis is extremely difficult. Especially because, more often than not, common OB/GYNs will claim to specialize in endometriosis simply because they are experienced in studying female parts. Unfortunately, endometriosis is a complicated disease and very difficult to treat. This is the seventh doctor I've found on my journey to treat my endometriosis. The sad thing is that some of my previous doctors were talented, intelligent doctors who did have experience treating endometriosis; however, none of them could successfully treat mine. Often they would shrug their shoulders and say, "well, you're a difficult case."(And some of my doctors were rude and mean and treated me like I only wanted attention and/or drugs.)
I am only 22 (going on 23) and already my endometriosis has done its absolute best to ruin my life... And although I am young and the disease has not had a chance to progress to the state it often reaches before diagnosis, it's progressing aggressively. Even on Lupron, which is supposed to chemically force my body into menopause, I was still producing endometrium and experiencing almost all of my normal symptoms. And I'm sure I'm not the only lady with this disease that has this unsettling aggressive form. Heck, I'm sure that I am lucky compared to some. But the problem is that, seeing as I have this unmanageable disease, I need a doctor that actually knows what s/he's doing.
Enter Dr. Arrington. I am so excited about this doctor. From what I've read and watched, he is one of the most knowledgeable doctors out there when it comes to surgically treating endometriosis. Largely because it is the primary focus of his practice. An actual endometriosis specialist!
Hopefully, in the future, more and more doctors will make treating endometriosis the focus of their practice and not just a feature. Because, as it is now, the current model for standard treatment is like having an acne dermatologist treat skin cancer. Endometriosis is too complex of a disease to be treated by the same doctors who deliver babies. And I'm not saying that to insult any doctor or to play down the miracle of birth. I'm trying to say that pregnancy and endometriosis are very different medical issues and should be treated by their own specialists. Pregnancy is a normal function of the female body, whereas endometriosis is a horrible dysfunction/disease of the female body! We need our own doctors!
As I was saying though, Dr. Arrington is an endometriosis specialist and is performing his unique brand of laparoscopic surgery on me January 24th. Whereas most OB/GYNs laser off endometrial implants (those nasty colonies of endometrium-like cells), Dr. Arrington scraps suspects layers of tissues completely off. This reveals hidden, deep tissue colonies that are often missed by traditional surgery. I am completely confident in his abilities, for several reasons: (A) I cannot find a single negative review of him online (all positive), (B) he's got amazing bedside manner, (C) he says he can eliminate symptoms in 70% of patients, and (D) he's an amazing surgeon--he is even capable of doing a hysterectomy completely laparoscopically. Although I am never excited for surgery, I've got to say I am as excited as possible for the possible benefits of this procedure. I'll talk about the surgery more in posts to come, but that is not what prompted this post.
|My first Tri--I'll be there again soon|
My goal, for better recovery, and an easier recovery, is to exercise every day up until my surgery. Whether that be yoga, biking, swimming, dancing, whatever, is not that important. I just want to exercise every day. It will improve my muscle tissue, improve blood flow, cell regeneration--I will be a exercising-healing machine.
I am completely, 100% sincere about this goal. I dislocated my shoulder recently, and still I've been exercising daily. Nothing will stop me! And to hold myself accountable, every week I will update my site with pictures and numbers recounting my goal progress.
So wish me luck! Hopefully my experiment will go off without a hitch and you will all hear my success story come the end of January.