So, today is the Super Bowl. A connection I will always link to Steffanee's adverse effects to Gardasil. It was the Monday after Super Bowl five years ago that we started the long journey of Gardasil. I made the comment to Dave, my husband, that on Feb 2, it will be five years. He questioned why I always remember that date.. LOL Typical man. It's not like I choose to .. It's just that I do! So five years later.. Steffanee is now 22 years old, graduated from Missouri University with a degree in Health Science and is now working a full time job. She is undecided in which direction she wants to go with her degree or in what direction to further her education. I'm hoping she dips and dabbles into a few things, then KNOWS what she wants to do. Time shall tell... We had just started with Dr. Cowan, the Naturopathic Dr in Columbia when I stopped posting. He has done great things for her health. He cleared up the bacteria infection in her intestines, then put her on a lot of supplements. She did have a set back after her 21st Birthday.. but we knew that would be coming. Not that I was happy with it, but College kids take a ton of shots on their 21st. Even the ones that shouldn't. But after that little set back, it seems she is doing very well. She is cooking and for the most part doesn't eat gluten. OR let me say, it isn't a part of her everyday diet. I'm sure she decides if it's worth the hassle of eating, then makes that decision. But I would say that getting the toxins and bacteria out of her body has helped her to process the "gluten" splurges. Eggs and Dairy are also not a part of her diet. Once she started with Dr. Cowan, her studies began to get easier. Her focus and ability to sit down and read got a lot better. Her GPA certainly came up her last two years. She just seems so much happier than she was for such a long time. Just wanted to touch base on this bittersweet day. Things are good. Life is Good.
Steff got the results from her Blood/Stool/Saliva Specimens. I had a tough time dealing with the results, somehow, I expected SOME good news. Didn't get it. Dr. Cowan, however, does feel that we can "get there"... Not sure if I had been in denial, or perhaps had somewhat accepted the way things had been with Steff's health. Either way, at that visit, I realized she was not a very healthy young lady. I hesitated to post on the blog and tried very hard to keep all the new information to myself. I know Friends, Family, People in general, get tired of hearing it. BUT, we are now a few months into Dr. C's care and I'm seeing Good Things. Ready to Share.
Her Saliva Test results were very close, if not worse, than they were when Dr. Mark tested a couple of years back. She is allergic to Gluten (We knew that one!), and eggs. The egg allergy was a surprise. Steff feels that hearing it from the DR makes it more real ~ she has been very committed to being Gluten and Egg Free. Her Cortisol is still out of control, Dr. C believes this is due to her Adrenal Glands. Her Blood work showed her Low on Iron, not anemic, and high inflammation in her body. The Stool Specimen detected bad bacteria in her gut.
Her healing started in her GUT.. Dr. C put her on Paragard and a Probiotic, then added Phytofuge. This, along with a better diet, has made a difference. Her tummy, which has always seemed bloated and round has flattened. Her bowels are better than they have ever been. TMI, I know, but it matters. LOL
SO, after that, we did blood work again, expecting to see an improvement. Didn't happen. Her inflammation did NOT improve and neither did the other thing he was watching. LOL I have a hard time with some of this, OBVIOUSLY. Better to not try to explain something I don't understand.. right?? So, needless to say, we were bummed. I took her to get more blood pulled for more allergy testing. The results just came in, our appointment is Aug 31 for that follow up.
In the meantime, along with being GF and Egg Free, she is on Adrenal Care, along with support for her liver, Magnesium, Iron & I believe that's all. She has more energy than she has in a long time, doesn't have fatigue nearly as bad. So.. I feel that things are headed in the right direction, yet again.
She moved back into the Sorority House on Aug 4. She was very busy for 2 weeks, preparing for RUSH week, then doing RUSH week. Long hours and a lot of work. She survived and seemed to be doing fine.. This is an improvement over the last two years.
After Steffanee's initial visit, we changed her diet. 25 grams of Protein and 8-10 grams of fiber for each meal. We ate like this all summer, only to send her off to college in HOPES that she has developed some good food habits. Agh.....
On a little heavier note... I have noticed on Mercks advertisements in magazines for Gardasil, the list of possible side effects NOW list all the symptoms that Steffanee suffered, including seizures, joint and muscle pain, fatigue, swollen glands, leg pain, bad stomach ache, the list goes on... in the ad, as well. Things that make you go hmmmmmm..........
Good Day Folks!
****UPDATE**** Looks like the release will be pushed back just a little to Late Summer / Early Fall 2012. ThinkExist is working very diligently to make sure this film is the best it can be! Thank you all for your support and helping us make this happen! It will chronicle just how devastating the effects of these HPV Vaccines can be.
As I am sending the link to this blog to yet another Gardasil mom, I take the time to read through it. I do believe there is good information throughout it, but I also remember that Steff was reading it, so at times, I didn't describe the seizures, neck jerking/twitching, or the eyes quivering even close to how bad it was to watch. She hated this blog and felt like it invaded her privacy. Perhaps it did, but I'm glad I have it for reference. Those of you that lived it with us, you know it was horrible. Those of you, just reading it .. I can honestly say this has been the most horrible experience of my life. Period.
On one of the FB groups, one mom asked if anyones daughter has been healed. There were several posts under it, most, like mine are doing SO much better, but aren't healed, all the girls still struggle in different areas. I learned something reading the updated posts. The sore throat and chronic sinus infections are common with the Gardasil Girls. I didn't connect it, I have seasonal allergies, figured her immune system was down and that turned it into a sinus infections. Hmm..... The new DR, the Naturalist, from now on, I will him Mr. N... said that could also be from her Adrenals. She just cannot get that blood, saliva and stool samples done quick enough for me. Seems that next Sunday just might fit into her schedule for all three.. Hope nothing interferes with that plan.
One more thing I need to follow up on. I did have the phone consult with Dr Mark, he believes the inflammation in her brain is from her eating the small amount of Gluten. He says gluten stays in the body months after eating it. He wants to do more food allergy testing on her.... my brain goes WHY?? One mom in touch with said that once they fixed her daughters Reverse T3, that all her food allergies were gone... That would be my goal..AND she is MUCH better....
The leaky gut, brain inflammation, and fatigue .... all connected to food allergies? Perhaps, but I want to try Dr. N first, to see if we can work from another direction. My honest feeling.... Steff has been through enough, has given up enough, if we can get her healthier w/o taking away things she enjoys, aka triscuits, chicken strips, then I'm trying it first. Thank you Dr. N for the wonderful web site I found on googling Naturalist Homeopathic Dr in Columbia MO. LOL
So... We had our appointment this morning. Two hours later, we are on our way out. Very nice and concerned DR. Younger than I expected, but that's not a bad thing. He confimed that Gardasil has damaged this tender little body of hers. It was weak prior to the Vaccine, I have always admitted that, then the vaccine pushed it WAY over the edge.
Course of plan? Blood Draw on Sat (has too much going on to do it sooner, it always makes her pass out and get sick), stool sample on Sunday and Saliva testing ASAP, which means she has to get up at 8. SO, hopefully soon. He is testing her RT3, Lyme Disease and all the stuff I asked about, BUT he feels we have just been putting band aids on what is wrong, he wants to get to the root of the problem. He believes it's her adrenal glands, the digestive system, and that is where he wants to start, OH and she's anemic on every blood test result I took with me. Wow. So... that's started, and hopefully soon she should be able to study better and focus without being exhausted all the time.
I cannot say LOUD enough that Steffanee has come a LONG way. Her life is full of activities, college stuff and she stays busy. At one time I wondered if any of that would EVER happen. So that said, I know my girl, she pushes and pushes that body beyond it's limits. She looks exhausted when I see her and usually sleeps the entire time she comes to visit. I'm okay with that, except I know her body and well, if you can figure out what to do to make it better, I'm all for it. This DR asked her a lot of questions... didn't realize it at the time, but he was questioning about the jobs her adrenal glands are supposed to do. Will know more after the testing, but I hope like hell that he gets to the bottom of her medical issues, the ones she has struggled with prior GARDASIL. The Brain fog, always hungry, inability to focus could be from the adrenals. Oh wouldn't that be nice, to fix that!
SO.. there you have it. Ole mom at it once again.... but isn't that my job?!? LOL I believe it is.
One more thing... as I was searching through Steff's medical stuff, I found the link to the list of side effects that MAYO Clinic had on their site. I'm posting it here so I will have a record of it. Not sure why, but it baffles me. IF they know of all these side effects ~ why can't they help your child? Or better yet ~ why do they keep giving the darn shots? Baffles me.
Hello All. Whenever I feel sad or disappointed that Steff is having a "bad" day, I read through this blog and realize OMG, she has come SO far. So far from where it started. She made the Dean's List at MU. I am very proud! She still struggles with concentrating and focusing, but we all know what a little fighter she is. SO making the Deans List is a very BIG accomplishment. I called DR. Mark and have a phone consult appt with him on Wednesday to discuss the options to help the brain fog and ADD symptoms. She filled out his questionaire and we faxed it in. He thinks she still has inflammation in her brain and that's what is causing the problems. I trust him and she wants help, so we'll see. Steff is loving life at the Sorority House. I figured she would be sick of it by Winter Break, but, nope, she's loving it. She has made a lot of new friends/sisters/whatever. = ) I'm just happy that she is enjoying Life. I still get an email about once a week from a mom that has found my blog. A mom that is searching for some answers on how to help her daughter, or in one case, her son. It still puts a black cloud over me to think about anyone going through what we did. It makes my heart hurt. I share what I know, refer them to Dr. Mark and check back in on them. That's about all I can do, besides lots of thoughts and Prayers. When I read postings in the FB Gardasil Groups about how bad the girls are still struggling, the ones that got sick about the same time as Steffanee, I am very Thankful. Thankful that Steff is doing so well and Thankful that I found Dr. Mark. I really believe that he is the difference between Steff and the girls that are still having problems. He built up her system, then slowly detoxed it as we kept putting supplements in it. Of course, if you've read this blog, you know that. LOL If this is the first post you are reading, go back through it to find all the important information Dr. Mark shared with us. SO Just wanted to touch base, Steff is doing GOOD. She is now The Recruitment Vice President for AdPi, she volunteers and is doing Relay For Life. AND seems to be maintaining her grades. We have a lot to be Thankful for. Three years down.. Time seems to be her friend.