Tuesday 15 May 2018

The Dengue Drama

At the end of last April, I came down with the dreadful dengue. The first few symptoms were brutal and came like a pang_walking was hard and my head hurts like crazy. Thinking it was a normal fever, I went home from work without dinner and upon reaching home vomited gastric juice then headed straight to bed due to extreme fatigue. What I didn’t know next was I was fully knocked out for two whole days. My housemates who had initially thought I was at work the whole time, did the Sherlock Holmes' deduction and came to realize I didn’t leave the house for those two days and came knocking at my door.

Did I mentioned, I have the BESTEST housemates everrrr??!
One forced me to go to the hospital with her despite my weak protest because I was dead tired. I definitely didn’t feel like walking and slumped on the seat all the way to the hospital with the concerned entourage in the car hahahaha. By the time we reached the hospital, they whisked me off in a wheelchair straight to emergency. One blood test, some interrogations from nurses and doctor then a few hours later, an energetic doctor came to excitedly announce the not-so-sought-after verdict: You have dengue! Freaking fun.

Now let me sleep, I thought as I stared at him with a mind blur like a sotong, too tired to retaliate.
Next thing I knew, I had a needle inserted in my left hand for the drip (Ya-ouch!). The following hours, multiple blood tests, tons of panadols, xan -ray, multiple Sodium Nitrate drips, antibiotic and anti-bleeding liquid were pumped into my veins. I would find dried blood in my nose too. So thankful my gums didn’t bleed like my friend’s who described what it was like when she caught dengue fever as horrible as mine a few years’ back.

Punctured mark as of today from having the needle in my hand for the entire week

A few days into ward life, my platelets took further dive and I was transported to the ICU. Goodness, I hated the place, I got strapped to the bed (for my own good), had wires connected to my body so nurses can monitor me at their desk and had a catheter inserter and connected to the urine bag. It was crazy embarrassing! Hey, I haven’t take off my pants in front of people in my adult life, okay! Because of the catheters, I had to wear the gown which means zero undergarments…………… At the same time, I was like, woah, how does the bag gets full when I didn’t feel like I was peeing at all.
On top of those, I had a blood pressure cuff strapped to my upper arm 24/7 and it takes my pressure automatically several times a day. The pressure is so tight by the end of my 4 or 5-day stay, there were bruises all over. Didn’t help I already have many bruises from the multiple blood tests which was made. There was a day I had more than 5 blood tests (Dengue, infection check because my fever was “abnormal”, thyroid, yada yada yada) going on so much the nurse couldn’t draw blood from my right arm they resorted to my left. So there, bruises on both arms…………….
I also found out I had water in my lungs which explained the x-rays, dengue had made them permeable and water had seeped into them. One litre a day only so as to force flush out the water from my lungs, the staff told me. Mind you, I can drink five litres in a day so 1 litre was very, very meh… I was so thirsty my lips and tongue went chapped.

For the next few days, because the doctor and nurses feared that if my white blood cells aka platelets were to plummet further, I will need platelets transfusion and prepared to have a bag for me delivered from the blood bank. I didn’t hope to use it because O+ blood bag is too precious even though I am aware that we Asians are mostly O-type anyway. My sister told me about the danger of getting infected from blood transfusion and was concerned because that I wasn’t getting better. Heck, as much as I wished and hoped to be better ASAP, I cannot control the internal battle going inside my body. Dr Zainuddin, who checked on me had similar concern even though he assured me blood bags are usually checked to ensure it is 99%++ (or some percentage I don’t remember) safe and made sure not to resort to using transfusion. Thankfully, my platelets started rising steadily after falling to a mere 21 count (Normal count is 150!). They did decrease for the second time a few days later albeit at higher count.
I also had a cardio doctor, Dr Tong (I hope I’m spelling his name correctly) who performed an ultrasound on my heart because it was beating abnormally fast from my hyperthyroid. I was later told there is a hole in one of my valve because my heartbeat was too fast. Later, another endocrine doctor, Dr Tan was assigned to ensure my hyperthyroid, which was 4x higher than normal came under control. I got nagged to take my thyroid medication again and to settle it for good so more consultations to come. Okay, doc.

I don’t know how I was so confident I could get discharged in 3 days, I ended up in the hospital for 8 days FML. I just have to nail the dengue lottery (aka one of the worse form of dengue), I told my bestie who visited me in the hospital.
For the next few days, my fever continued flaring to 39 or 40 degrees almost every evening even though I was out from ICU. Doc mentioned my fever was unusually high so I was afraid I won’t get discharged soon enough. Thankfully, my temperature remained normal on the 8th day so I was good to go aka whisked to home sweet home by dear parents who have been visiting daily.

Fogging at our home. Homies sent the pics to me lol

While I was recuperating, nurses would tell me how I looked different from the first few day I was admitted. I was burning red like a lobster or crab, the comments vary. My friend commented I looked like I had been drinking and drunk harharhar. But it was true, my hands were flaring red like the traffic light, it was so weird. The fever had been so brutal I lost some weight because partly, from the lack of appetite and maybe the fever have burnt off some of my fat whatkindalogicisthis. Today I’m 90% better and my weight went up WTH. Walking, typing, sitting for long hours are still a pain and my bone is hurting, I feel so old! Can’t wait to start feeling like me again sigh. I think the whole dengue drama took a toll over my body so much I found a whole lot more grey hair when I got discharged #TrueStory I hope by now my body has got natural antibodies against dengue fever, the whole experience was so traumatic!
Anyway, throughout my ward and ICU days, I am SUPER DUPER GRATEFUL AND THANKFUL for the doctors who had checked on me (Dr Zainnudin, Dr Tong and Dr Tan) and for all the nurses who were so patient doing the multiple blood tests, blood pressure tests & temperature checks, ultrasound test, bringing me my medications like 3 times a day if not more, injecting stuff into my vein slowly and massaging my hand at the same time so I won't feel that much pain, helped me up when I couldn't, making sure my drips do not go dry, bringing the mobile x-ray machine to my room when I was too weak, pushing me on wheelchair to the x-ray room when I was strong enough to stand and to the blood test centre, bathing me, inserting the catheter into *ahem* down south, cleaning my urine bag multiple times in a day, bringing me the ‘relieve’ chair (it’s a chair on wheel where patients’ poop in it (Yeah. I know.) and then cleaning it, supporting me when my blood pressure took several dive which made me feel fainty, giving me ice bags when my fever flare almost every evening, changing my robes, and making sure I feel comfortable with the whole really super, duper embarrassing situations. For everything, THANK YOU!!! It’s a bit late, but here’s a virtual shout out to you gals and guys, I would like to wish all nurses in KPJ Damansara a Happy Belated Nurse Day (which falls on 12th May FYI)!!

Of course, big thanks to sis who rushed to the hospital close to midnight, took care of me during the weekend and even taking an extra day off from work and my parents for coming by every single day and took care of me. Twinsie too, who visited even though he was busy. Not forgetting, to the best-est housemates in the world, bestie and all friends who wished me well and prayed for me too, big thanks for your concern and love~~ Virtual hugs cause I won’t hug you guys in real life HAHAHAHAHAHA. Maybe I will.


While I was in the hospital, homies came to visit and die die wanna play Pitu app. Result so fake OMG

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