Saturday, November 3, 2012

Epiploic Appendagitis

Being in pain sucks. I've been in an annoying amount of pain for about a week, and in the beginning of it I thought it was something that would eventually just go away. But this kind of stomach pain got to the point where I was unable to walk normal, and I ended up being hunched over at work trying to ease it. I couldn't get in and out of my car very easy, couldn't sit down and stand up without cringing in pain, I couldn't even bend down to tie my shoes. I have a very high pain tolerance, and I'm extremely stubborn, so for me to voluntarily go to the ER, I was in some serious pain. On the 1-10 scale for how much stomach pain it was, it'd be a 8 or 9.

So I went to the ER, and based on the location of the stabbing pain, the nurses and doctors thought it could be the appendix. But they said I didn't look sick, and I didn't feel sick, my dexcom graph was a no-hitter for the past 24 hours. The good thing about the helpful and very kind nurses and doctors was that when they saw that I had good control over diabetes, they didn't have to do regular blood glucose checks, or administer insulin for me (which I'm sure saved some money on my incoming hospital bill).

While I was waiting to get my CT scan done, I had several short meetings with the assistant surgeon, which was kind of nerve wracking because I never had surgery before, and I thought the only way for the pain to go away was if they cut me open. After waiting for 4 hours, I had the CT scan done, and I had to wait some more for results so I watched "The Walking Dead" which was a badass show to be on at that moment.

After about a total of 5 hours I found out what the source of the pain was, and it's called epiploic appendagitis, which is an uncommon, benign, self-limiting inflammatory process of the epiploic appendices. Epiploic appendices are small, fat-filled sacs or finger-like projections along the surface of the lower colon and rectum. They may become acutely inflamed as a result of torsion (twisting) or venous thrombosis. The inflammation causes pain, often described as sharp or stabbing, located on the left, right, or central regions of the abdomen.

The good news is that the pain is slowly going away every day, and I was prescribed some extra strength Motrin. After doing some research, I only found one blog post from someone about epiploic appendagitis, so after my girlfriend told me I should blog about this experience, I thought this may benefit someone in the future, in dealing with this uncommon condition.