Happy Endings and Looking Forward to a Bright Future in 2020

Happy Endings and Looking Forward to a Bright Future in 2020
As we begin a new year and a new decade, in my first column of 2020, I'm revisiting some of the stories I shared in 2019. In July, I wrote about the detrimental effects prednisone and my vitamin D deficiency have had on my bones. In mid-December, my endocrinologist gave me good news on both my vitamin D level and bone density. My vitamin D has remained at a stable, optimal level all year without the need for supplements. My bone density scan in August showed a 12 percent increase in bone mass in my spine and hip. Although my doctor wants me to get one more scan before moving me to a biannual schedule, I now only need to see her for a follow-up annually instead of every six months. That’s one fewer doctor's appointment and copay I have to worry about next year. I also discussed my struggle with anemia in July. After doubling my ferrous sulfate dosage a year ago from one 365 mg tablet daily to two tablets, my hemoglobin has increased slightly. Moreover, my iron level rose from 19 to 146 micrograms per deciliter, and my ferritin went from four to 47 nanograms per milliliter — both are now within the normal range. At my gastroenterologist appointment a couple of weeks ago, I asked him about the ulcerative colitis diagnosis I noticed on my discharge papers back in October. He was as surprised as I had been and was puzzled about how the diagnosis got in my chart. He confirmed that I only had Crohn’s colitis and that I didn't have ulcerative colitis. This clerical error taught me to always read the post-appointment paperwork to fully understand what was discussed and check for inconsistencies. I’m relieved the mistake didn’t cause issues with my health insurance. My husband, Patrick, has been taking medication for hypertension for a month, and his bloo
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