The GOOD the BAD and the UGLY

I often wondered how I could describe my condition or really how I feel due to my CKD and how it affect me, or is it the same for all CKD HD patients? Whilst thinking about it I remembered the western film “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” and that’s it to a T. I’m going to start with the GOOD. The GOOD is how I feel when I hit my dry weight and my BP is normal following dialysis, I’m out of the unit and home within ten minutes, quick cup of tea then out with Sasha my faithful Border Collie over the fields and onto the country park, sometimes I go on the bike and she leads the way. We can sometimes be out for a couple of hours but it’s like a tonic all that fresh air, makes me forget I’m a CKD patient. I very often meet people I know and receive comments like “hello you’re looking quite fit to-day” thank you I reply makes me feel even better. When I do get back home it’s my lunch time usually around 2:30. Then it’s catch up with some outstanding jobs and after a light meal it’s out with my dog once more onto the country park to check all secure and to lock the toilets and the park gates at around 20:45. Then it’s back home pegging for a drink, a nice long cold drink of orange juice, (if only I could) so it’s an ice cube. Now that’s what I call a GOOD day.
The only problem with Good days is; they are followed by bad ones. I’m up at 05:30 on dialysis days to put Emla cream on my Fistula and I usually feel fine, 06:20 in the car and of to the unit at Wigan usually on the machine before 07:00 for my four hour stint. After a couple of hours the BAD kicks in, the buzzer goes off and the nurse say’s “let’s check your BP”, “I’ll switch the fluid off you BP is low” this happens several times during the next two hours. It drops so low I end up on Oxygen and extra saline. On one occasion I passed out, and had to stay in the unit for an extra two and a half hours, when the BAD starts I’m shattered for the rest of the day, sometimes my BP drops to 60/40 and boy you see double when it’s so low.
Then I get to the UGLY and I don’t like it at all. Following dialysis and feeling not too bad its home, cup of tea and out with the dog, after about a mile I start to get stomach cramps which gradually get worse and worse until I vomit. The pain is excruciating and the only way I have found that works to rid the pain is to lie down on my left side, the pain eases after about 15 mins but doesn’t go away completely, and this takes several hours to completely fade away. I meet people I know whilst I’m out and get comments like “gosh you look quite ill are you ok” I try to smile and I say “it’s my condition I’ll be fine later on” then its home and to bed as quickly as possible and hoping I have a good tomorrow.

One thought on “The GOOD the BAD and the UGLY”

  • That’s a great way of describing life on haemodialysis and the ‘Ugly’ days still haunt me almost eleven years on from transplant. Thanks for taking the time to write this Victor and here’s to many more ‘Good’ days!

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