Sinusitis so bad it is killing me! (incapacitating in flight!)

ATN_Pilot

Socialist Pig Member
#81
Most Dr's go to surgery first because it makes them a lot of money and they don't have to deal with the after issues.
Disagree. I went through years of worthless treatments, medications with bad side effects, etc. Finally the doctor recommended surgery, and it literally changed my life. I should have had it years earlier, and I was pissed my that doctors didn’t push me that way sooner. In reality, doctors frequently shy away from surgery and push towards medication because liability risk is much lower when pushing pills.
 

TexasFlyer

Living the Dream (well at least trying to)
#82
My upper endoscopy was rescheduled due to a miscommunication (now set for mid July). My Brain MRI and MRA is under review by the neurologist (I see him next week as he is working with the ENT). I finish up inner ear testing today (also ENT referral). So the end of July is when the ENT should make a very firm decision on what she advises. She is clearly pushing toward surgery.

But now I have two issues. Barometric induced migraines and chronic sinusitis is a diagnosis thus far. I just had a new diagnosis today based on the ENT referral to a sleep specialist who urgently called me upon analyzing the sleep lab results (had both PSG and MSLT). I have mild sleep apnea, which is not a big issue but can be a factor. But a new big issue is that I have Type 2 Narcolepsy per the MSLT test. So we had an at length talk about Narcolepsy today and devised a treatment plan.

And before anyone gets all crazy on here, no I do not randomly collapse or fall asleep at any moment or have some obvious issue that I should have known about. I just thought me being awake for 30 hours non stop at times (periods of insomnia but can function fine the whole time) and sleeping 16 hours non stop at times (I do love to sleep) and other random life things ranging from sleepiness to low energy was just normal for me. I found ways to control it over the years with schedule modifications that kept me alert. I learned post college it was impossible for me to have a 8am to 6pm job 5 days a week or I would fall asleep randomly. Hence why I was an entrepreneur most my life as I controlled my schedule and had great success working an usual schedule, yet the projects always got done ahead of time and accurately. And as a pilot I felt good due to the control we have over our schedule where I never fly more than 4 days in a row, almost always have 3 days or more between trips, and almost always start in the afternoon and bid for long overnights too while dropping down to minimum hours to be sure I had a restful scheudle that worked for me. In 3 years as an airline pilot only called in fatigued once and overslept twice when did not hear the alarm (once in a hotel on an overnight and once at home). And I never fell asleep on the flight deck since if I ever would have dozed off I would call in fatigued immediately upon landing. Anyway, other than odd sleep habits which I never thought much of, I always felt safe and awake enough to perform.

Anyway. To say the least. With both the migraine/ sinus issue and the apnea/ narcolepsy issue. This is going to be a long battle. I will be needing to contact the union rep tomorrow to see what I need to do since I am trying to stay positive. But it is hard. I am feeling a bit depressed over all this so I also been seeing a psychologist as an independent sounding board every other week. Not to mention, writing this on here is oddly therapeutic as well.

Nuff said for now. I'm tired (joking, it's 1am so actually wide awake).
 

ATN_Pilot

Socialist Pig Member
#83
Sorry to hear. Narcolepsy will definitely be a disqualifier for flying, at least until Ok City reviews your case file. Not sure what union you have, but if its ALPA, call Aeromedical and they can talk you through what will be needed to reacquire a medical, if possible. They’re a great resource. Seeing a therapist is also a great step. Have you seen a psychiatrist also? I would recommend it if you’re feeling depressed.
 

TexasFlyer

Living the Dream (well at least trying to)
#84
Sorry to hear. Narcolepsy will definitely be a disqualifier for flying, at least until Ok City reviews your case file. Not sure what union you have, but if its ALPA, call Aeromedical and they can talk you through what will be needed to reacquire a medical, if possible. They’re a great resource. Seeing a therapist is also a great step. Have you seen a psychiatrist also? I would recommend it if you’re feeling depressed.
It is ALPA. I been in touch with the ALPA Aeromedical and they said once the Sleep Doc and Neurologist and the ENT both develop a formal treatment/ surgery plan, to then send all medical records to ALPA Aeromedical for review so they can help guide me from there. All 3 docs are working together. The only procedure we are waiting for now is the upper endoscopy to get scheduled and completed (in July). After that is when it should be time to gather the med records with their devised plan of action and send it to ALPA.

And yes. I have been seeing a psychologist twice now and have put him on a biweekly rotation. He is available to me more often if needed, and there are days I feel like I may need him weekly. If anything, he is a good neutral sounding board like my Primary Care Doctor is as well. Support is tough since I don't have a family structure to lean on through this and none of my friends are local. So I am flying solo through all this.
 

ATN_Pilot

Socialist Pig Member
#85
Keep in mind that a psychologist is different than a psychiatrist. A psychiatrist could help with medication if you’re feeling too down about things. The psychologist can only do talk therapy. Just something to consider.
 
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