Wednesday, October 1, 2014

GP Fighter - Emma

"Don't give up, continue to strive for your goals."
 -Emma Tillman

A couple years back I read a fascinating research article about TPN that still to this day I often think about.  Little did I know I would soon meet the one who put it together, hearing her speak not on behalf of this particular research, but her own recent diagnosis of gastroparesis and how she continues to not let obstacles get in her way. 

Growing up, Emma Tillman, a clinical pharmacist who now lives and works in Tennessee, struggled with bouts of cyclic vomiting.  This could go on for a day or so but then would often subside for weeks, sometimes months at a time.  There were periods when these episodes increased, particularly around times of stress.  While attending college she would need to receive IV fluids at times when things got bad.  Then one day, the Sunday following Thanksgiving of 2011, the vomiting didn't stop. She quickly lost 30 pounds.  Like most of us, Emma went through the ringer; of testing including labs, ultrasounds, CT scans, and the gastric emptying study (GES), which eventually led to her diagnosis of gastroparesis.