Thursday, August 14, 2008

Autoimmune Hepatitis update and Prayer request.

Seven and a half years ago I was diagnosed with a illness called Autoimmune Hepatitis. Without to much detail and explanation my immune system attacks my liver, no one really knows why.
When the diagnosis first came I was in what the call hepatic failure, a fancy term that meant my liver had stopped functioning, and I am blessed to be hear writing this today. This is a long story and one I'll share later, but needless to say God answered my prayer and allowed me to stay with my sweet then 18 month old little girl. At the time I was a single mommy and having her live with her bio father was something I couldn't see as a good option. My prayer to God then was take everything else, but let me stay with Brinn. He blessed me back in ways I never imagined.

So over the last seven and a half years, I have had my ups and downs with my illness. When my body goes through a AIH flair up, I get very fatigued and because of the medicines I take to keep my immune system suppressed I catch a lot of colds, along with other side effects the medicine causes. When I was first diagnosed Dr. F told my sister and I that we needed to talk about a transplant. Then as Doc said by some miracle I was able to avoid that procedure at the time.

The last couple of years especially this year has been tough on my system,a lot of colds and flu this past year, and a hospital visit for a blood transfusion due to a rupture in my throat. My liver tests haven't been the same since. I have a very aggressive case, and take a higher than average dose of a drug called Imuran and a smaller dose of Prednisone, I've never been off my meds the one time we lowered my current dosage I bumped higher than Doc was willing to risk in 2 week period, and went straight back to my normal dose.

I have had a blood test every month since January, and the numbers went up (bad) and then started back down (good), but this last month I knew something was off, so when I went in for my test the 31st of July, I expected a little bump. What I got was a jolt, the highest they've been in probably 6 years. I was shocked, and so was Doc. Why we don't know. I've been resting, not over doing it not getting sick. I mean going 1 month with out a cold this year was a record. So he bumped up one of my meds (predinsone) and I had another test yesterday.

Brett and I've been a bit freaked out this week, lots of prayers and trying to lean on the Lord for peace, knowing that this didn't catch God by surprise, but our human brain keeps wanting to know what's next.

I got my test back and my test results, are lower, and that's good, that means the medicine is reducing the inflammation. However Doc called me he only calls when he's got the this is not a routine just stay on the meds and test in a month kind of thing. Those he emails me.

It seems that after talking with his colleague that I need to start preparing for the idea of a liver transplant. See back in the beginning my liver rated on a scale from 1-4 for the need for transplant at a 3. Now they believe that the damage sustained at the time of the hepatic failure has been added to and that's why my liver is getting larger again. Which means it maybe that I'm come up on the time to be a transplant candidate.

We don't know of course, I have another blood test in 2 weeks, and then 2 more weeks. This could go on for another year, or more, they could decide to send me in a few weeks. That we didn't get a clear picture of.

It's been 7 years, and a lot has happened in that time. I met and married Brett, we went through some pretty rough stuff, when his need to go into drug recovery came out. (again another story) I've watch Brett grow from a man who had never opened a Bible to a man who is never without one, and constantly hungry to learn more of God's word. He adopted Brinn in April, and he is what I like to call an Ephesians 5 husband, he strives to love me and Brinn as God has called him to do.

God knows all things and he prepares the path before we ever walk it. He prepares it for us down to every detail. Seven years in the Bible means completion. Seven years ago if I had to face a transplant it would have been a much different story. My family was my stronghold during that time, they gave so much of themselves to me and Brinn to care for us. But I believe that God has prepared Brett to be the husband and the father he'll need to be should this transplant be the Lords will. God has surrounded us not only with my family, but Brett's, our church family who carried Brinn and I through prayerfully, lovingly, and financially, and now friends who have been there to help us in our time of need and offer Brinn a safe and fun place to be.

We would appreciate your prayers, pray for God's healing power, pray that we will be strengthened through the waiting and unknowing and rest in God's arm's. Pray for Brinn as we rearrange her routine, to help my body to recover from this episode, pray that she will see our faith in Jesus and that hers will grow. Pray for us to be content with God's will, and to be ready to do whatever his will and plan is. Check back here for more updates



Scrap Evangel said...

My dear, this is my prayer for you today:

Isaiah 58
8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness [a] will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.

9 Then you will call, and the LORD will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.

Abundant blessings and healing for you in Jesus name. Amen!

Sandie Dunn said...

Hi Carol! Wow! I'm so sorry to hear that you are having such a hard time. I really wish there was something I could do. I will absolutely pray for you and your family. You sound so strong considering all that you've been through. Jesus is the healer of all healers, and there is a reason for everything. I agree that the human mind just wants to know what's next, but you sound more capable than most to wait patiently to find out. May God bestow all an abundance of healing and blessings on you.