Hello again, Pseudomonas

I found out yesterday that after 10 years of freedom/resistance/health (call it what you will), Pseudomonas has found me again.

For those of you who aren’t down with the CF lingo, Pseudomonas (sue-da-mo-nus)  is said to be the worst bacteria you can get. It’s that bad, that if you grow it, you get segregated for clinic appointments, away from the other CF’s who don’t grow it. Pseudomonas can be very serious for anyone who has a weaker immune system, for example a CF patient and then hard to get rid of. It enters the lung tissue and can cause pneumonia in severe cases. You don’t need to have CF to be able to grow it, but for healthy people, it doesn’t usually cause any illness or symptoms.

I had no idea I was growing it as I didn’t feel worse than normal. I got home from Florida and managed to gain a cough and cold within a week. Then at last weeks clinics appointment, I got some extra antibiotics and all was well as they got rid of my cold and improved my cough! Even my lung function was up 10% or so from before Florida! (It turns our Florida heat agrees with me!) However the sample from last week came back positive for Pseudomonas. It was nothing I did to grow it again, I don’t think it’s my fault! But it’s annoying that I’m growing this again, ruining my streak of healthiness! (Of course I’ve grown other things but not this one!)

It can be treated it two ways – luckily we know what treatments work!

1) A 14 day course of IV’s – an experience I’ve had many times, it’s just a case of going in hospital. I’ve managed to stay as an out-patient for about 4 months now and it would be annoying to have to go in, especially when I’m not feeling unwell! Also the timing isn’t great as I’ll be going back to Sixth Form soon – I don’t want to miss the last of my holidays but it won’t be a great start to be absent at the beginning of term! However, it could be the 4 months of freedom that has caused this! The IV’s that I have when I go in hospital are the ones which would keep Pseudomonas away!

2)A course of oral antibiotics – basically just a tablet twice a day for 3 months (I believe).

With both of these options I would also have to nebulise an antibiotic. (Something which I don’t get on with to well..)

At the moment, oral tablets would seem like the best option but there’s a clinical trial which is to test the effects of both of these options, to see which one works better. I meet the criteria to take part but it will randomly assign me an option and I don’t want to go in hospital right now! Knowing my luck, that’s the option I’ll get! It will be decided quickly but now I’ve learnt that I have it, all I want is for it to go away!!

// Beth


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