My chest physician wants me to have a bronchoscopy. A CT scan shows I have a partially collapsed upper right lobe and minimal scarring. No bronchiectasis. I also have some pericardial effusion (fluid round the heart). He says he wants to flush out this fluid and see what it is.
I've had significant chest problems for the last 2 years ('pneumonia' 2011; dry coughing this summer). I was convinced there was an allergic component. Consultant poo-pood this, but raised IgE (allergy marker) proved me right - ha!
One problem is that I refuse to have this bronchoscopy conscious, even sedated - it's a phobia. Consultant is reluctant to do it under GA but isn't outright refusing. Meanwhile I also need a bladder biopsy under GA so am trying to get both procedures done together - but that's really another story. In any case, nothing is happening right now. It all seems to have stalled, despite repeated email nagging from me.
Given all this, I'm wondering if 'the team thinks' that I even NEED this bronchoscopy? Is there some other way of firmly establishing what's going on in my lungs? Or maybe even just eliminating possibilities?
Surely these lung issues are related to inflammation caused by whatever AI condition 'they' decide I've got 'today'? Currently diagnosed with definite APS (Hughes), maybe Sjogrens, question mark Lupus.
Or should I, instead, be pressing for the bronchoscopy precisely because it could help clarify the diagnoses???