Once again, it begins

The difficulty in swallowing. I’ve been ignoring it mostly, for the last couple of years, but as of late, it’s become less and less an annoyance and more and more an actual discomfort. I have two options at this point. One is to stop eating and feed intravenously.

The other thing is to have an outpatient procedure done which actually jams a pointed rubber pole down my throat. This tube, inexplicably filled with mercury and called a “bougie,” pops open the esophageal ring that’s preventing food from continuing on its merry way. And then I have to start watching what I eat. I have to start denying myself alcohol. And a whole lot of acidic or spicy foods. And salt. Probably best to avoid dairy too, while I’m at it.

I’ve put off bougienage, and as you can guess–I don’t like having it done. Some people have to have it done once a year. I’ve put it off for at least five years now.

I wonder why.

Just about the only good thing about this procedure is the demerol and the time off.

The thing is, my difficulty with swallowing means that the ring has closed to less than three quarters of an inch. Normal diameter of the esophagus is one and a half to two inches.