New Ailments, Old Problems

It seems none of us can get away from deteriorating health. Once you have a major illness, I’m convinced you don’t ever actually get back to 100%. I just returned from a follow-up with my surgeon, Dr. Herbert Schwartz out of Vanderbilt’s Orthopedic Oncology clinic (Medical Center East, 4th floor). No matter how much I may complain, never let it be said that I’m ungrateful for all that has been done for me. G-d is good and He has a plan, even if I cannot see even the most immediate parts of it, or understand any of it, at this time.

Chronic Pain

Ever since my surgery, I have been dealing with chronic pain issues. Whether from swelling or as a direct result of the surgery itself. I’ve been dealing with pain through medication or just not using my arm. It’s not been going very well. I’m on several prescription painkillers (Ibuprofen, hydrocodone, gabapentin, etc.). This is not an ideal situation for me. I don’t like taking pills but I don’t think there is anything available homeopathically that would be of any help, not for the level of pain I am in during or after a hard day’s work. I can only imagine what it is like for those who have pain from unseen causes (fibromyalgia, MS, etc.). For those of you with whom I may have been not totally believing or sympathetic to what you are going through: I am truly sorry.

Charcot Joint

Charcot joint is an issue usually described in diabetics, and is usually a problem that seems to resolve itself – to a degree – if properly treated. My issue is similar to charcot joint, but isn’t exactly the same. Neuropathic arthropathy is definitely an accurate description of what is happening to my elbow, but diabetes isn’t the cause (as I am not diabetic, der). I have arthritis in my left elbow, and the pain I have in it will only worsen with time. Today I was fitted with a brace to help limit the movement of my elbow in an attempt to control pain in it, but it’s really a poor bandaid for the issue. It is also only one of three options. An artificial elbow joint was one of the other options, one which I immediately dismissed, even before he said that the usually do not last very long. The third one was left unspoken, though I had an idea about what he was thinking by the pained look on his face.

Today did have a silver lining, though. The cancer has not returned and my wife and I had a very late lunch at the Mt. Juliet, TN Olive Garden. The former is always a blessing to find out, and the latter has always been a good experience for us no matter which Olive Garden we dine at. Fabulous service, great food, awesome prices. We will definitely be returning in the future.

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