The latest in the ongoing sarcoidosis saga (I’ve now a diagnosis of lymphatic and pulmonary, but not ocular, sarcoidosis) is that today I went all the way across town for a pulmonary function test, which is a new one for me.
It was not, contrary to what I was told, a 75-minute appointment; thirty, tops. Despite warning the respiratory therapist that I didn’t know if I’d have any sensory issues with the equipment or the (surprise!) booth I’d be enclosed in for part of the test, in the end everything went smoothly. This was a welcome change from the panic attack I had during a chest CT late last year.
From my perspective, if there were any differences between my baseline performance and that after four hits of albuterol inhaler, they seemed very slight.
There’s no question, I’ve realized, that I’m far more prone today to becoming out of breath or finding myself taking big, deep breaths after even minor exertion than was the case, say, six years ago when I could do short but intensive stints dealing with fencing or the goat barn
These days, I can get out of bed, get cleaned up, get dressed, and scoop the cat litter and find myself winded. Last week, after the big snowfall, I walked down to the top of Cathedral Park, which involved just two, very short blocks at an incline. Halfway back up the first block it was all chest-aching, heaving big breaths.
I’d be surprised if the report comes back with no indication of any issues. Whether or not they can be traced to the sarcoidosis, specifically, I’ve no idea.
One thing worth noting: when I first received the sarcoidosis diagnosis, I could’t help feeling like I’d heard the word before. Could it possibly have been on House? Sure enough, sarcoidosis was one of the running gags, somewhere behind the show’s favorite, lupus.
It will make sense to House viewers, then, how weird it was to sit down in the waiting room outside of the pulmonary function lab and (I swear I am not making this up) hear, through a set of nearby doors, the strains of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”.