Part II: Pneumonia? Are you sure?

Though I went to the functional medicine doctor specifically to address my sudden, cystic acne, my doctor wanted to discuss more than just my skin. In true functional medicine spirit, my doctor wanted to talk about every health problem I’ve ever had, ever…

When I was younger, I struggled with bronchitis constantly. At least twice a year I’d receive a prescription for antibiotics, disgusting cough syrup, and an inhaler to help beat the infection. Eventually, amoxicillin stopped working and I had to graduate to azithromycin prescriptions in order to feel better. What never seemed to go away, though, is a very distinct, honking type of cough. I don’t know how else to describe it other than loud and goose-like. And once I get started coughing, I really can’t stop! I cannot even tell you the number of times I was kicked out of class in high school because I could not stop coughing…

Well, my functional medicine doctor did not prefer anything about that story. In addition to all of the other blood work, she wanted to test my mycoplasma levels. Apparently, mycoplasma is a marker for atypical pneumonia and my level is way too high! The standard range for this infection is less than 0.91. When I was originally tested in February, my level was 2.59. In April when I was retested, my level is 1.43 and it is measured by the hundredth…so, still way too high!

Basically, I’ve been existing with a pneumonia infection for a long time. Who knew! I don’t feel sick, I run 3-4 days per week, and though I don’t think I am experiencing any pneumonia symptoms, maybe I am?

At my first follow up appointment, I was presented with two options. Try a (costly) herbal option to try and knock out the infection or take azithromycin for 14 days in the hopes that the antibiotic will get rid of the pneumonia once and for all. I really didn’t want to go for the drug…but the doctor thought that was the best option, plus everything else associated with this journey and diet costs so much; I didn’t really want to add yet another expense.

I’ve been taking the antibiotic for a week now, and I don’t really feel any different yet. I think my body maybe just got used to operating with the pneumonia infection…but perhaps this course of treatment will ultimately make a distinct difference in my overall health and well-being. I likely won’t be able to assess how I feel until I make it through the dreaded Candida die off as well, so we shall see!

So, to recap my course of treatment so far:

I’ll continue sharing more results and the courses of treatment throughout the week!

Are we all operating at suboptimal health? What if our definition of feeling “great” is actually us feeling terrible but we have no idea? Am I the only crazy person who thinks about this?

Yes, Jessica. Yes you are.

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7 thoughts on “Part II: Pneumonia? Are you sure?

  1. Mycoplasma pneumonia is actually pretty common in the younger population. In medical school, we call it “walking pneumonia” because people walk around with it not even knowing they have pneumonia!

    I’m glad your doctor figured it out, and I would have to agree with him to take the azithromycin. Then again, I’m pretty biased.


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