Wednesday, September 10, 2014

My Cooking Journal 26 - Stir Fry Button Mushrooms With Sliced Pork In Oyster Sauce

This time, I would like to introduce one of my favourite dishes – “Stir Fried White Button Mushrooms with Slice Pork in Oyster Sauce”. In this dish, I have added red onions and spring onions to give a touch of pungent aroma. I personally enjoyed the intense flavour and crunchy texture of this dish.
White button mushroom (Scientific name: Agaricus bisporus) has great value of nutrition facts, easy to cook and taste more flavourful when cooked. It is believe that button mushrooms contain several valuable nutrients that will benefit our heart, boost our immunity and enhance weight loss. It has high amount of copper that assist in producing blood cells. Research studies show that it is capable of reducing inflammation in arterial cells that will help in lower the risk of blood flows problem. 
In addition, button mushrooms contain anti-oxidants properties and are beneficial to our immune system. It helps to increase the production of natural killer cells and other proteins to fight against foreign invaders and assist in repairing our body tissue. It is low in energy density (low-calorie) that improves our body compositions and helps maintaining body weight loss. Additional nutrients are vitamins B and D2 and minerals such as iron, zinc, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium that will also enhance our diet nutrition.
Select and Store
You can easily buy them in any supermarkets or local wet markets. If choosing mushrooms, make sure that they’re firm and plump with uniform colour, no signs of bruising or dampness. I usually wrap them in paper and store it in an air tight container. They can last for 3 to 7 days in the refrigerator.
Preparing and Cooking
When preparing, give them a quick rinse avoiding them absorbing too much water as mushrooms are porous. Then use a paper towel to pad dry. Cut or slice them as desired. When they are cooked, majority of their nutrient contents remains and only between 5 to 20 percent of their value is lose. It is recommended to sauté for approximately 7 minutes in high heat to maximize their flavour and nutrition. 
 1. 1 pack White Button Mushrooms - Cut into thin slice, rinse and pad dry before cook
 2. 1 piece of pork loin (2 inch thick) - Cut into thin slice 
 3. 2-3 stalk Spring Onions - Wash & Cut into 2 inch length 
 4. 2 medium size red onion - Wash, remove skin and cut into thin slice 
 5. 2 slices Ginger 
 6. 1 clove Garlic - skin peel and slice (1 table spoon)
 7. Oyster sauce – ½ table spoon for stir fry and 1 teaspoon for seasoning of pork slice
 8. Pinch of corn flour, pepper & sugar 
 9. 2 tablespoon Olive Oil

Friday, August 15, 2014

End Of CYC (Cyclophosphamide) IV Treatment For Lupus Nephritis

Finally my CYC treatment (6 treatments) was over. It ended on 11 August 2014, but was the most painful one that I encountered in the haematology centre. Before the therapy start, the nurse will insert a needle with small tube into my vein for letting the medicine to pass through the bloodstream. Unfortunately, the job was not properly done and a "big bump" was formed on my hand (sign of back flow). She quickly removed the needle and another nurse assisting to re-do the needle insertion on my the other hand. During the process, I felt a sharp poky pain. I started to sweat as I'm phobia to needle and blood. I almost wanted to give her a loud thunder roar but didn't. I never encounter such a lousy skill before!
The Treatment

During the treatment, I was given 250mg Mesna first (for protect my bladder), followed by low dose CYC (cyclophosphamide) 500mg IV (30 minutes over) and finally  another 250mg Mesna (2 hours later after CYC) for every two weeks x 6 times.

The Side Effects
Each time when I completed one session, my legs become very weak. The impact will be greater on the 2nd and 3rd day after the therapy. My body felt weaker with stiff joints especially on my knee and spine. I can't bend down my knee and will hear a loud "cracking" sound when squatting. I can feel the tightness on my spine as if metal rod was tied onto it to make it tighter and stiffer and sensing of back pain at times. I just feel like I am "humpty dumpty" when the pair of "jelly" legs start to wobble.

Another constant night mare was hair loss. I have lost a considerable amount of hair and saw strands of dropping hairs on pillow, floor, bathroom etc. My boy could even notice the clumps of hairs on the bathroom's floor trap and had questioned me who its  belong to? I was quite sad with the drastic change in my appearance. I hate glancing at the mirror with that big moon face, thinning hair look and sign of bald patch at the back of the head. I had gained a lot of weight recently. My boy had noticed my fat tummy and commented that I have become fatter. I must say "thank you" to prednisone for pumping me up like a balloon. Not only my appearance, the medication had also affected my mood whereby I get irritable easily and my mood can swing like roller coaster.
I'm hopeful that I can return to the same old me soon and my hair will grow back in few months times. At this point, I am trying hard to step down my prednisone dosage (from initial 40mg to now, 18mg). At least, the good new is there were sign of improvement after these treatment. From the test result, it shows that no more blood  appeared in my urine and protein in the urine had significantly reduced to normal level. 

My nephrologist had commented that he will start me off next week with "MMF - the immunosuppressive drugs which I never try before. I am hopeful that the maintenance phase will turn out well and I can continue to eliminate prednisolone to "zero" phase. Another worry is the medical bill, hearing that MMF is an expensive medication. Looks like the hole in my pocket will get bigger!


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

New Episode For My Lupus

My new chapter of life living with lupus begin here.  I was discharged from hospital on 3 June 2014 for SLE Glomerulonephristis Syndrome, Class IV. It just comes unexpectedly and without much choice, I have to take whatever possible advise from Doctor to safeguard my kidney.
My rheumatologist referred me to see a kidney doctor as there was sign of protein and blood in my urine. My first visit with the Kidney doctor, he advised me to carry out a kidney biopsy to determine the extend of the inflammation in the kidney. I decided to get the biopsy done on the following week. So I went to the hospital on 29th May 2014, thinking that it just a simple outpatient procedure and I will be discharged on the next day. Doctor rang me up on the day when I was discharged from hospital. The test result showed that my lupus were very active. They need to put a quick stop to prevent further inflammation caused to my kidney. I was re-admitted on 31st May to start with chemotherapy  (Infuse with cyclophosphamide which is the immune suppression medication) followed by methylprednisolone on three consecutive days.

By hearing the side effect such as nausea, vomiting, hair loss, infertility, urination bleeding etc, resulting from the medication.  Its really make feel nervous and demoralise. Even since living with lupus (for 8 years), I am always haunted by hair loss problem. My hair is getting thinner and lesser each days even though I have tried many hair supplement to savage the situation but with no avail . I wouldn't know how to face myself when the side effect kick in? Definitely, I will be demoralise! My lovely hubby keeps assuring me things will be alright and he will stand by me throughout this bumpy times.
I have never expect Lupus to attack my kidney even though I knew Lupus is a disease that can attack any part of your body organ. At some point when there were signs of flares, my rheumatologists will at most add on the dosage of prednisolone to keep the activity down. It seem to me that all these years it was quite under control.

Except for last year, in 4th April 2013, I was once admitted to hospital for Pseudomonas chest infection with acute bronchitis and sinusitis. Probably because of SLE that have make me prompt to bacteria infection. For that past few months, I encountered a rough and tough rollercoaster ride. I thought things will turn out better after my recovery.

Well, I have never expected this coming one did a great impact on me. After going through the 1st chemo session, I feel extremely tiring, fatigue and with lethargic joints. My back aches at times and my knee seem to break into two parts and have no strength upholding my legs. I even have to rest on bed for a while to rejuvenate my energy to keep up with my daily activity. I am expecting more side effects to occur within the next few weeks. Not knowing how bad is it, I know that it will make me feel lousy and terrible!  

In fact, this June holiday, we had planned an overseas trip to Beijing with my parents, siblings, niece and nephews. It was my Dad's dream (who is 80 years old) to be able to visit Greatwall of China in his life. We wanted to fulfil his wish and decided to organise a family trip to Beijing. Well, the negative news is doctor advised me not to travel overseas due to my low immunity. I am pretty disappointed but still holding out hope for travelling with my family in this June vacation. Hopefully miracles do happen and I could obtain green light from Doctor to allow me to travel.

At this point of time, my worrisome will not make any difference, so just let it be and takes one step at a times. Live as per normal and hope for the best.

I am looking forward for a positive outcome as I knew that my two lovely boys need my accompany. I wanted to give them a complete family life till they grown up and I will try my best to overcome whatever obstacles occurring to me.

Never underestimate this little friend, Lupus! Listen to your body!