The Puzzle


The brain and lumbar CT Scans are over and so is the blood panel. All done on the same day and quickly. She mangled my arm looking for a likely spot to draw the blood from so my arm is a bruised mess. Then back to the scanning room and did the CT Scans. All in all it was very quick and easy. Which was a relief.

Then yesterday right after Terry left for work, I felt weird. So I took my blood pressure. It was 88/46. Okay, that is scary time. And I couldn’t stay awake long enough to form a coherent thought. So I called Terry to come home and fell back asleep. When he got here and woke me again, it was just as low if not lower. So I asked for a huge glass of tomato juice with lots of salt in it. I like it this way anyway so I wasn’t upset at the supposed cure. I drank it and half of another. Terry took off to hurry through the grocery store and I took my morning pills being careful not to take a blood pressure pill.

And then it hit me. This puzzle I am locked into right now. It explained a lot and for the life of me (no pun intended) I can’t see how to remedy it, maybe you can. The quadruple meds for water retention and the potassium that goes with it is doing it’s job nicely – removing it from the leg. However the leg is still swollen hard but the rest of me is getting skinny. The water leaving is lowering my blood pressure while the water I retained was keeping the BP at a normal level. It’s a catch 22. If I leave the dangerous water, the BP is normal but there is a high chance of losing my leg. And if I drain that water off to remove the danger of bad things happening to the leg, then the BP drops like a stone which could  be life threatening on the other end. I wonder what the  doctor will come up with to solve the puzzle? What do you think is the answer?

I will check back later…

Kath


Write about your strongest memory of heart-pounding belly-twisting nervousness: what caused the adrenaline? Was it justified? How did you respond?

Ahhh, this one is easy. We were living in a nice duplex so close to the white sandy beach that we could hear the waves crashing in on the shore. I had been injured on the job and so I was home alone that afternoon when I walked from the kitchen through the living room….uh oh, wait. I was stopped right in the middle of the living room by a sight that makes my heart step up the pace just to remember it. We had tile floors due to the fact that carpets don’t fare too well this close to all of that white sand. And throw rugs were scattered here and there, Right smack in the center of one of my nice throw rugs lay an 8 foot long snake. I’m sure it only looked 8 ft. long to me who was just on the verge of hyper-ventilating. The truth of the matter is, it was probably closer to 2 feet long or less. A snake is a snake however and now my mind frantically searched for the answer to “what do I do now? I want him outside not in and no way do I want him taking off for hiding places leaving me to never sleep again for fear that he would crawl in bed with me.”

I frantically searched my brain for an answer when I turned around quickly and spotted the dust mop sitting in the laundry area. I slowly side stepped over to it and grabbed the handle. Everything was done in slow motion so as not to scare the snake. Slooowly I pushed the dust mop toward the rug prepared at any second for a slithering snake and screams from me. It touched the rug and he looked at it, then up at me. I crooned softly like singing to a baby to calm it and gently pushed. The rug had no non skid backing so it moved silently and slowly across the tile toward the front door. I couldn’t believe that he still laid there quietly looking around as if he were enjoying the ride. My heart in my throat, I knew the hardest part was still ahead when I had to stop and open the door. We had no screen door so that was a plus, but I just knew when I opened the door to the hot outside he was going to be off that rug in a flash and hiding somewhere out of sight. 

I slowly reached out for the handle to the door and still he watched me. My crooning became more of a raspy croak as my throat tightened while I opened the door very slowly. He actually turned his head and looked outside. Knowing this was my only chance before he flew back into the cool living room, I pushed with all my might and out of the door flew rug, snake and dust mop. I slammed the door shut and just shook in my bare feet for about a minute and a half before moving on rubbery legs to my recliner and plopping down in it. A huge smile broke out on my face and I began to laugh remembering how I gave a snake a ride and he seemed to enjoy it. I just don’t want to do it again, that’s all. 🙂

A Little Bit Sad, A Little Bit Happy


Hi,  Checking in again, and sorry I’ve  absent for a bit.

It’s been a long couple of weeks and it’s far from over. I’m not going to go into great detail,  Instead I’ll just list short descriptive items.  First of all, after my GP, I had to go to the neurologist. I was out of pills and it was overdue. She re-prescribed the pain meds and asked me if I had fainted since the emergency room and I had. I told her I fell forward out of my chair and was out until my head hit the floor hard. I was a little worried about it since it had been a couple of weeks or more and it was still swollen and hurt to brush my hair or touch it. She came over and pressed pretty firmly on the spot and made me holler Ouch! and then she called for a CT Scan of the brain and lumbar and an MRI after the monitor is off of the heart.  And so the day after Christmas I go to do that and see what’s going on in my head and  back.

The GP also prescribed therapy for the leg and foot which is handy by being in the same building as she is here on the Beach. I went two days ago and wasn’t thrilled but I knew I had to. It actually turned out ok since she thinks she  can get the swelling down in 7 treatments of one day after another and  mostly it will be wrapping each day. So that actually sounds good. I know when Home Health did that at first it felt good. So here’s hoping that it works and I can get back to the compression boot. As for the heart monitor, that is turning out crazy. The cardiologist had to be out-of-town for my last appointment to see him and they have to be done in three’s. 1) attach the heart monitor 2) in 30 days Terry takes it back so they can get the readings off of it and see what they show 3) go in a  few days after that to visit with the dr. about the findings. So I couldn’t walk on my leg that day and called to tell them so we could reset the appointments once again. A new person answered that I hadn’t spoken to before and I said I needed to reset and why…that I had other ailments that sometimes interfered. She got angry sounding and said, “No, we’re not resetting it and you will come in on the 15th to see the dr.” I let her know we hadn’t had the monitor on yet, so it  wasn’t supposed to be with him until all was done and he read the results. She said “You will keep this appointment anyway.” I said Okay…fine and that’s how we ended it. Should be a strange meeting with no results.   

I guess that is it…no more until the day after Christmas. Oh yes, I did forget to tell you about the bad couple of nights I had this week during all of this appointment setting. It really was getting to me and causing me to feel almost strangled with the stress as one appointment piggy-backed with the other. The GP called also for a sleep apnea overnight at my house testing while I sleep. I reminded her I don’t sleep anymore, only in “once in a while catnaps” during the day. She said that’s one thing they will see is why you can’t sleep. Sometimes you can get like a new baby home from the hospital who gets its nights and days turned around and its hard to fix, but it can be done. I didn’t like it at all and when I got home the phone rang and it was them wanting to set it up. I immediately hit the stress wall and started crying and told her it was just too much, too many specialists doing too many things to me too fast. She said did they tell you it was at your home so you could sleep more relaxed? I said yes, but you don’t understand, I don’t sleep! Only during the day off and on and not every day. She got quiet then and realized it wasn’t going to work and she said very nicely, “I will put this in your file and there is no pressure here. You call us when you are feeling better and think you might want to try it.” I thanked her and that was that. That night I sat up and cried all night and wasn’t sure why, but couldn’t stop. Release of pressure valves I guess. The next night I sat up at the computer working on my 3D models and would stop off and on and cut my hair off until morning when it wasn’t long anymore but short. I am not sure why I did that either but I’m struggling valiantly to get my sense of humor and positive outlook back on track. I feel a little better today but not too thrilled it will be next summer before my hair is long again like I prefer it. 🙂 I guess I could order one of those cheap dynel wigs.      😉

Okay, I’m signing off for now. Have faith in me, I’ll get back to a good place if they just back off and let me breathe a little. Wishing you and yours the best of Christmases in whatever way you celebrate. I’m going to close my eyes and listen to a little Christmas music online tonight and pretend I am seeing fluffy white snow instead of lights in palms and Santa in shorts.

Kath

HIP HIP HOORAY!!!


Any success is a good thing! And today, finally, my favorite most  revered GP in the land was back home and she told me a very special piece of news. I DO NOT have an infection. Hence I have had no fevers throughout the entire time. So the word of the day is lymphedema physical therapy to get rid of all that water and redness so I can get back to the cycling pressure boot. Also to improve our gait and balance when walking. And here is another shocker…(at least it was for me) she said I am carrying at least 25 lbs. of water between both legs (Mostly in the right leg) which will go quickly now due to her quad-druppling the Lasix and Potassium that goes with it. I will be so light I’ll float like a feather. I was wondering if this was such a neat thing last night as I made (it seemed like) 100 hurried trips to the little girl’s room. And it’s working today too which should be interestng since at noon I have my appointment at the cardiologist’s to get my heart monitor installed. Do they install heart monitors like software? And if so, what happens if you freeze up and they get the blue screen of death???? Okay, that’s enough of that. I will return and regale you with tales of installations and 404 Not Founds!

Kath

The NEUROLOGIST AND I


That title sounds a bit on the promiscuous side…whatever that means.   Back to business. My visit to the neurologist brought a back exam that ended in another MRI since the pain in the lower back (original herniated disks from accident) and mid back (injuries) were still causing pain after 13 years. No surprise there. Then she asked me if I had fallen again and if so, when? Yes, 2-3 weeks ago. Any injuries? Yes, I fell hard on my head and it still hurts to even lightly brush my hair. Let’s see that  Ouch!  (I told you it still hurt. Told her too but…)  I don’t like that, let’s do a CT scan on the brain. And a CT scan on the back. After that the MRI on the back. She could decorate her office walls from stem to stern with my films.

When I showed her my swollen red leg and foot, it brought ooo’s and ahhh’s. A change is always like a cold fresh breeze and no matter how interesting the back is, in the course of 2 years, it becomes  a trifle boring and is beat out every time by a bump on the noggin and a leg and foot red as fire and big as a Super Tanker in the Gulf sun. They are way up there over a boring back. But Dang! Two other doctors are following those! OH, OH, OH… I shout like Horshack on the “Welcome Back Kotter’ show, I have to have a heart monitor since my blood pressure was dropping like a stone and causing me to faint like the head fall which we already wore that subject out and another recent one that caused the night in the hospital where I was tortured. We won’t revisit that one either.

On the momentous crash, I was practicing for the Indy 250 of motorized chairs around the kitchen island when the unexpected faint took place. When I awoke (which plowing your face into the front of the fridge will do every time) I had to turn the feebly putt-putting of the chair off and feel my cheek to find a really nice facsimile of the nubbly texture on the fridge door. Feeling very sick to my stomach and dizzy, resulted in calling Terry, my ride extraordinaire,  and we  headed out to Bay Medical where I got right in to a room since it might be heart (unlike swollen red diabetic legs..not so much).

That was the afternoon matinee yesterday. Tomorrow we have to head out when the local NAVY Base strikes up the National Anthem at 8AM. I thought those cute little Navy boys had to get up earlier than that! My GP who is back will be my Doc of choice tomorrow to see if my leg and foot (which look suspiciously like they did last Friday) look like we need to switch meds like Helen Van Elsen. Tune in then for a new report! Signing off…Kath    

Appointment with the PA


I had my appointment early and I showed her all and went over all that had happened so far including my good friends who want me to head to Mayo. She didn’t comment on that of course, she can’t advise me  although my GP can on Thursday if she wants. In the meantime, I have instructions to tighten up my diet even though it’s  hard right now with the holidays upon us. I am to keep the leg elevated, moist heat, and keep taking the Cipro until its gone which should be Thursday when my GP is back and I have my appt. with her. They gave me a HUGE shot of Rocephin in the hip and made me sit 20 min. to make sure that I wasn’t going to have a reaction from it since it was large. (took forever to get in me)

Set up a series of visits with a physical therapist who works with lymphadema patients and she will do some therapy on me to dimish the water in my right leg and foot which will help the infection  to diminish and the antibiotics to work better. I imagine Thurs. will  bring more decisions.  She termed my cellulitis as moderate in severity, and from that I have determined I never want to have it severe. Any more and my foot and leg would explode all over her. ;-0   I am to call for a fever or more pain, redness and/or swelling. So we’ll see how this big shot does and I will let you know how things are going. Thanks for being there!

Kath