Let’s see if I can get back to any regularity writing a blog. When I was in the hospital, i was given a Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FESS). My pneumonia was considered to be caused by aspiration.
Aspiration pneumonia occurs when food, saliva, liquids, or vomit is breathed into the lungs or airways leading to the lungs, instead of being swallowed into the esophagus and stomach.https://www.mountsinai.org/health-library/diseases-conditions/aspiration-pneumonia
When I left the hospital in January my X-ray of my lungs were clear. I was only in the hospital for 7 days during that visit. I did have Covid but it was the UTI that got me admitted. I was in that horrible rehab for the next two weeks. It was sometime in that second week I started coughing. I remember every time therapy came in, for what they called “therapy”, I’d have a small coughing fit and needing a minute to catch my breath. The therapist asked for an X-ray about 4 days before I left. I never got their results. It is on my list to request it. I need to see if the rehab ignored the pneumonia when it started. Regardless, the doctors agreed my pneumonia was NOT due to Covid. However, having had Covid with a weakened immune system brought about pneumonia. Somehow being in bed for the month of January, something was getting into my lungs.
The pulmonologist requested the Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FESS). This was a test I was not happy about doing but happy because I really needed to know the results. I have had issues with swallowing. I’ve blogged about them a few times. The test involves putting a fiberoptic camera through your nose down the throat. It is not a good feeling. I will say you do stop gagging when it reaches your throat. Next you eat food that have food color added. The speech therapist, who does the test, watches your throat muscles as you swallow. In this test they are not giving you dry pieces of steak. You know the piece that you have to chew 6000 times and still have an issue swallowing, even when you don’t have swallowing issues? They give you very basic things cookie, applesauce, and I had a sandwich I would never eat dry meat that I know I might have difficulty swallowing. I already learned that lesson. That’s why I got a sandwich ?. I passed the swallow test. Chances are I didn’t aspirate food into my lungs.
I’ve noticed that I have had a few more swallowing issues since I’ve had the pneumonia. If I drink water to fast, too slow or if I’m not paying attention. The juice from fruit has gone down the wrong way. All these things have happened to me. I’ve had an incident every few months. Now it has happened every few weeks I have to be very aware. I need to rephrase that. I am very aware. Just added to the list of the new me.