AuthorTopic: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth  (Read 11354 times)

Offline RE

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on February 19, 2015



Discuss this article at the Medicine & Health Table inside the Diner


Today, Doom arrived at my Doorstep.


As regular readers of the Diner know, a while back I suffered a partial paralysis of My Right Arm, which I have been dealing with for the last few months.  I actually did a Rant on the problem shortly after it cropped up.



Here’s the transcript for those of you who prefer to read rather than listen.



Typical current RE Sleeping Position

Typical current RE Sleeping Position


Greetings Doomfans, and welcome to another edition of the Frostbite Fall Daily Rant, here on the Doomstead Diner.


For today, I am going to leave the world of Global Doom once again to talk about personal Doom. This goes along the lines of it’s a Recession when your neighbor loses his job, it’s a Depression when you lose yours.


I remain amongst the fortunate folks in the world of Collapse for the most part, no debts, money in the Bank, still employed, live in a nice still uncollapsed neighborhood etc. However, I have health problems, most of which are my own fucking fault for taking lousy care of my corporeal package for the last 50+ years. Well, actually I took pretty good care of myself for the first 35 or so, but slacked on this stuff for the last score or so of years.


I mentioned in a prior rant my issues with PAD, peripheral artery disease which has made my legs less than world class for running the marathon, or even walking to the dumpster to dispose of some of the waste from my life. This has been an annoyance for a while, but overall hasn’t made life that difficult for me.


A couple of weeks ago though a NEW problem cropped up, which appears to be neurological in nature, though I am not 100% sure of this or what exactly is causing it, though I have some pretty good ideas on it at this point, after dealing with it for the last few weeks.


The etiology of this latest issue is one day about 3 weeks ago or so I noticed some pain in my right arm. The next day, ENORMOUS Pain at the base of my neck. The day after that, I could barely move my right arm.


I hate the whole med industry, so refused to go to the Doctor. I figure at the time its a pinched nerve in my neck, maybe some CRACKING from a chiropractor will fix it up. I had good luck with a chiropractor once before, so even though these guys don’t have a great rep overall I figure this is worth a try again. The first session gives me some minor relief, but the next session does nothing. I cant see continuing having my head and back cranked on like this if I can’t perceive releif after the torture session.


So now I do finally talk to an MD, a friend of mine, casually about this issue. He informs me I can have a whole HOST of problems possible here, from a Stroke to Lung Cancer. So now I am SURE I am gonna die soon. He also lets me know there is no way to make an absolute diagnosis without getting not one but probably 2-3 CT scans of the tissue in my arm, my neck and my torso. The TESTS alone here are probably $3-4000, and they won’t cure any of these problems either.


If I DO find out I have Lung Cancer, what’s the prognosis there? Very low survival rate if you got the BIG C in your breathing apparatus. In the med solution to this issue, you gotta go through Radiation and Chemothrapy, and even after all of that most folks don’t make it more than 5 years best case scenario. Not gonna do this no matter what.


If I find out its a STROKE, also not much can be done. These things either heal over time or they don’t. Your brain and nervous system either find a work around to the problem or not. Physical Therapy can help here, but you don’t need a Physical therapist to help you with this, all the info for this is available Online on what to do.


So now I decide to be my OWN Doctor, and go researching to try to figure out WTF is wrong with my Right Arm based on all these symptoms, and after a couple of days of this I get what I consider the most likely answer, I have something called”Cervicogenic Headache”, just a real bad version of this. It hits the lower neck vertebrae, and comes basically from Bad Posture and doing stuff like hunching over your laptop 8 hours a day writing about DOOM. LOL.


So now I figure I am not really dieing of Lung Cancer, I’m just a CRIPPLE for some indeterminate period of time until I can Rehab my way out of this or not.


Until you have actually LOST the use of one of your arms, you don’t realize how much this screws up even simple things you do all the time like wipe your ass or shave. I happen to be (fortunately in this case) Left Handed but even so I have traditionally wiped my ass with my Right Hand and put the shaving Cream on my face with this hand also. I already have had to re-educate myself to wipe my ass with my LEFT hand instead, and spread shaving cream on my face with this hand also. This hasn’t been too hard overall, but there are other more difficult things I have to find work arounds for while I Rehab here, or not.


My Cameras and my Car are two main ones. Did you know all Cameras are Right Handed? The Shiutter Button is always on the right side of the camera. If you only have use of your LEFT hand, you can’t hit the shutter button to take a pic, Try it with your camera. Fortunately here I don’t have TOTAL loss of the Right Arm at the moemnt, it’s just real weak through many positions. If I hold the camera up with my left hand, I can essentially rest my right hand on the camera and my finger still works to press the shutter button. LOL.


Similar with the car. The Transmission Lever is operated with your Right Arm, what I did to adapt here is use my Left Arm to lift my Right arm up to hold the lever, Dr. Strangelove style and then pull on my right arm with the left one to shift it into Drive. LOL,.


Putting on your clothes, tieing your shoes, buttoning your shirt, zipping up your fly, EVERYTHING is a challenge here without a fully functional right arm! Fortunately, I did not lose complete use of it, just partial, and more fortunate than that I appear to be getting incremental improvement as days go by here, though it is mighty slow overall and I don;t know if I will ever get back complete use of this limb.


I keep my Left Fingers crossed the Left Arm doesn’t go down the route of the Right one before I can get it working OK again. As of now, I can adapt, even though many things are difficult to accomplish. Similar loss in the Let arm would make that impossible though.


On the upside, I can still keyboard with both hands, though a lot slower now. Also got no problem ranting into a microphone attached to a wireless headset, though it is a bit of a challenge to get the damn headset onto my head to begin with.


Basically at this point I am a Living Metaphor for the Industrial Economy, falling apart one piece at a time, held together with duct tape and bailing wire.


That’s all the Doom, this time until next time, here on the Doomstead Diner.


RE


I didn’t see a doctor about the problem until just recently, since I was without insurance and just to get it diagnosed was going to cost a small fortune, much less any of the possible techno-fixes depending on exactly what the cause of the problem is.  Well, not completely accurate, I have a friend who is an ER doctor, and I talked with him about it, and we looked at some crappy X-Rays of my neck the Chiropractor took which didn’t really show much.


I considered also going to an Accupuncturist after the Chiropractic did nothing, but finally passed on going down that route also.  Visits there weren’t too cheap either, though a good deal cheaper than a visit to the Internist to get started on this thing.  I finally got some new Med insurance though, so a few weeks ago it was off to the Internist for the first appointment in the Big Med Industry.


From my chats with the ER Doctor, I was aware of a few of the possibilities here.  Possible trauma to the Spinal Cord, possible blockage at the Brachioplexus from a tumor, possible forms of peripheral neuropathy.


For my initial visit with the Internist, $500 not including the Blood Tests, which I am not sure how much they charged for those yet.  He did a few squeeze tests and the old fashioned ping your elbows and knees with a rubber mallet trick, and found enough wrong that he recommended I see the Spinal diagnostician in Anchorage.


I saw her the first time 2 weeks ago, and she did a few more tests, but without an MRI and Chest Xray and a more comprehensive set of nerve tests, making any kind of diagnosis wasn’t possible.  $1000 for this visit.  So I was scheduled for my BIG DAY today of the full 9 yards of Techno Medicine, XRAY, MRI in the morning then the nerve tests in the afternoon.


The XRAY was EZ and fast, then off to the MRI Tube.  You don’t want to be claustrophobic in these things, and I wondered while in there how some of the Large Size people we have in Amerika can even FIT into one of them.  I asked this question after finally getting out, and the answer is they have special Jumbo MRI units for the Big People.  LOL.


A few rules while getting your Neck Scanned, don’t swallow your spit or move your tongue while the RACKET is going on, it can blur the image.  You have your ears plugged up and pads over the ears, but it’s so loud when the machine is running that the sound travels right through your bones and into your ears that way.  Also, don’t need a bathroom trip, which I started getting concerned about around the 20 minute mark inside the Electronic Coffin.  Fortunately, I made it through the full 30 minutes without pissing the demeaning Hospital Gowns they make you wear for these things.  I avoided any claustrophobia feelings by keeping my eyes closed the whole time and pretending I was taking a nap.


Cost for this adventure, around $3000 for both, then I had a couple of hours for Lunch and upstairs in Tower A of Providence Hospital for the Nerve Tests.


After once again undressing and donning another Hospital Gown, the nerve Test Specialista came in, and we had a Discussion first about what was now possible in the panoply of things that could be wrong with my nervous system.


First, a RELIEF, the Chest XRAY showed my Lungs were clear, we could rule OUT the Big C of Lung Cancer. :)


Then came the BAD NEWZ.  What could not be ruled out based on the symptoms and initial tests was ALS, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, aka,  Lou Gehrig’s Disease.  She was going to have to run through full conductivity and needle testing to see if this was the cause or not.


At this point of course, my Heart is Pounding, my Brain is Racing.  I KNOW the progress of ALS, it remains an incurable disease and if it is what I got, then I got MAYBE a year or two left before my motor neurons progressively deteriorate and eventually I choke to death on my own spit, after a few months where I can’t feed myself.  I mention to the doctor that if I got ALS, I would rather die fast here.


So now it is time to do the nerve testing, and folks, this is positively Medieval stuff, I imagine they do versions of it with higher amperages at Gitmo, but even at the low end here of the Shocks, every one makes you JUMP and grit your teeth if you don’t wanna be a baby and scream.  The Needle stuff is even worse than the electrode stuff.  I am not sure which was worse, this or the day I had my Teeth pulled by the Dentista, it’s a Pain Tossup there.


https://www.bvu.edu/resize_image?path=/dotAsset/201210.jpg&w=628I was reminded of my Science Cabin biology experiments on Frogs that I caught at Summer Camp.  In those days, nobody was worried about being Cruel to Frogs, so all you did before disecting them was “pith” the brain of the frog so it wouldn’t jump around on you when you dissected it, but the nerves still worked, you could make legs move with a little jump start from a 9V battery, etc.  In this case, I was the Frog.


It took about an hour of this shit for Dr. Frankenstein to work her way all the way from my toes to my hip on my right leg, then from my fingers to my shoulder on my right arm, then finishing me off with tests of the neck muscles.  I am a limp rag at this point but move my decrepti ass off the table and back to the consulting chair for the DISCUSSION.


GOOD NEWZ!


It’s probably NOT Lou Gehrig’s Disease, if it is it is very early stage and with new medicines coming down the pipe, I might have a few years left before I choke on my own spit. :)


Now the BAD NEWZ!


The main problem appears to be in the Spinal Column between the C4-C5 vertebrae, this apparent from the MRI.  I apparently have an extremely narrow channel for the nerves going down through my neck, this is probably congenital and then exacerbated by Age as bone spurs develop on the vertebrae and can put pressure on the spinal cord.  Normal Channel width around 10mm, Spinal Specialists begin to be concerned around 7-8 mm, mine is 5mm.  Accckk!


Then there is the DAMAGE.  There is trauma and scarring of the tissue where I whacked my neck in a fall I took just prior to all this shit going down.  It’s very precarious, and the Doc WARNED me I need to wear I cramps on my shoes for Ice and Snow, make sure there is nothing to trip over, don’t whiplash your neck in any way because…at the point where this is affected, if it gets any more pressure I will be a QUADRAPLEGIC!



This is a GOOD result for a QP trying to rehab. I’ll spare you the depressing videos of QP being fed by helpers and getting his bed pan cleaned of excrement and being turned over so he doesn’t get Bed Sores.


Is there HOPIUM here for RE?  Of course there is, modern medicine is AMAZING!


My next stop is with the Spinal Surgeon, where any chance for fixing this up lies in having at least two of my neck vertebrae fused, along with trying to grind off some of the bone spurs and damaged spots to open the channel a bit for the nerves to operate the way they are supposed to.  Said operation of course has its own set of risks, they probably have to go in from both the front and back of the neck to try to fix it, and the recovery period is LONG.


I’m not sure I even WANT to go through this shit.  I haven’t figured out yet what I am going to do.


On the upside, it is very liberating in a way, I no longer have to concern myself with Prepping anymore, I am a fucking goner no matter what here, even if modern medicine can keep me ticking a while, in a SHTF scenario I am DEAD in short order.


If I just stay careful here, maybe I can last a while longer with just a malfunctioning right arm, write a few more blogs and record a few more rants before I turn into a vegetable.  All I ask here is that when the messages from my Brain shut down to my Fingers to further keyboard out the Doom here on the Diner, you Diners send in Dr. Kevorkian if I cannot off myself at that time.


To conclude, I DO consider myself the Luckiest Doomer on the Face of the Earth.  I had a great run through the Age of Oil, living by my own set of rules and making only the compromises necessary to make to get along.  I had enough time and woke up to the nonsense going down early enough that I was able to write down just about everything I could think of to examine the history and how we got here, and how we might work out of this very ugly situation.  Also, much like Lou Gehrig, I am glad to have been associated with the people who have helped me in creating and building the Diner.  A great bunch of Doomers.  Love you guys.


RE


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Offline Joseph McCafferty

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2015, 11:45:05 PM »
RE, you're the 'voice' of doom, so we just need your head in a jar - like Tricky Dicky in Futurama!

I was paralysed myself about a decade ago, by something called Reiter Syndrome which floods the joints with white blood cells. Thanks to the incompetence of my doctor in the UK, it wasn't until I visited my girlfriend's family in Germany that I got a correct diagnosis and treatment.

To relieve the pain, I was given a course of Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS) called 'Naproxen' which worked wonders. I still go back to my GP for re-ups, because it also relieves the pain of my scoliosis and lumbago which I suffer from. It's only available on prescription here in the UK, but while I was visiting my sister in the US I saw it on sale over the counter at a pharmacy, so every time I visit her I bring a load home with me.

I have a theory that it is sold over the counter in the US, because of the mad expense of the American medical system. It must save a people over there a lot of money in medical bills. You can get it in pure form, or you can get it as an added ingredient in Anadin. I'd recommend it for your pains, but see your pharmacist first.

Anyway, get well soon bro.

Joe.

Offline g

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2015, 05:50:19 AM »
Get on a fucking plane to Boston or New York. Tell someone at the air port security when you get off the plane that you cannot move your arm and neck and think you had a stroke, they will rush you to a first rate hospital where they have to treat you by law.

You are wasting your time and gambling badly dealing with those quacks. When they come after you for the dough, hire a pro to work out a payment schedule.

You are better off alive than broke. Time is of the absolute essence in dealing with your situation. Boston or NY hospitals will know in an hour what is wrong with you and begin treatment.

If you decide to stay start mailing your sister or someone you trust a good sized stash you can get at if the expenses are going  to wipe you. Send Cash only, Registered mail only, and insure it as if it were rare coins, put some quarters in the package to make it look good.

How the heck can you be a school teacher and not have medical insurance? Are you sure there is not something in your contract with the school where you can seek some relief in a medical emergency? Can you argue your situation is work related? Perhaps you could seek a social security disability or something along those lines. There are lawyers who specialize in that sort of stuff. You mentioned military brats, is there a way you can get a clerical type job on the military base that will get you some government insurance? Pre existing condition turn downs are now outlawed in many instances.

You mentioned this problem way back and it's obviously worsening, you are a big boy who knows what he is doing, but time is always of the essence in dealing with this stuff. The quicker you figure a way to get to first class medical help the better.


 

Offline RE

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2015, 06:20:07 AM »
Get on a fucking plane to Boston or New York. Tell someone at the air port security when you get off the plane that you cannot move your arm and neck and think you had a stroke, they will rush you to a first rate hospital where they have to treat you by law.

You are wasting your time and gambling badly dealing with those quacks. When they come after you for the dough, hire a pro to work out a payment schedule.

You are better off alive than broke. Time is of the absolute essence in dealing with your situation. Boston or NY hospitals will know in an hour what is wrong with you and begin treatment.

If you decide to stay start mailing your sister or someone you trust a good sized stash you can get at if the expenses are going  to wipe you. Send Cash only, Registered mail only, and insure it as if it were rare coins, put some quarters in the package to make it look good.

How the heck can you be a school teacher and not have medical insurance? Are you sure there is not something in your contract with the school where you can seek some relief in a medical emergency? Can you argue your situation is work related? Perhaps you could seek a social security disability or something along those lines. There are lawyers who specialize in that sort of stuff. You mentioned military brats, is there a way you can get a clerical type job on the military base that will get you some government insurance? Pre existing condition turn downs are now outlawed in many instances.

You mentioned this problem way back and it's obviously worsening, you are a big boy who knows what he is doing, but time is always of the essence in dealing with this stuff. The quicker you figure a way to get to first class medical help the better.

I DO have medical insurance now, which is why I finally went to the doctor.

Far as finding the right guy to carve up my neck goes, I'll see who the internist recommends then do some research on what his success rate is with these sort of fixes.  I made it for 8 months or so already here, so I am not going to panic just because I saw some pictures of my spine.

Providence Hospital in Anchorage is pretty good.  I'll only go out of state if absolutely necessary.

RE
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Offline g

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2015, 06:49:18 AM »
I feel for you RE, know what your going through.

Hate Doctors and the Medical establishment as well.

Put off going as long as possible, always hoping problem will disappear, but of course they never do.

There is always a good side to any situation, you have a very modest life style and work with you mind, and have no kids or such depending on you. Things can always be worse.

I only mentioned Boston because of our reputation, and there are always wealthy Saudi sheiks and world figures coming to Boston for medical reasons. Anchorage should certainly be capable. That talk of chiropractors led me to think you were getting sub par treatment. I assumed incorrectly.

It might be worth your while to check out if their are any dietary steps you should take that might help your condition as well, the internet is full of stuff. I use the Mayo clinic And Harvard medical websites for info, loads of valuable information. You might also want to seek out blogs or chat rooms with folks suffering the same problems for advice and remedies.

You are cetainly correct about the advances in medicine and technology, utterly amazing. You will be  OK. Good attitude is important so keep your mind active and dwell on the positive.

Offline Mister Roboto

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2015, 07:24:35 AM »
Well, for some reason, the main page of the DD blog won't let me post a comment, so I'll post it here:

I can relate.  I have probably tendonitis in my right shoulder from what might be a tear in my rotator cuff, and I don't know how it happened!  I had the day off from work the day before the morning (two days ago) where I started noticing a problem.  The pain was very minor at first so I went to work at the grocery store and worked the way I normally do.  The next morning the pain and stiffness just started getting worse and kept on getting worse throughout the day.  In the early afternoon of yesterday, I pretty much lost the normal use of my right arm.  I tell you, I've never been so grateful to get my hands on a battle of vicodin!  So no doing grunt-work at the narcissistic grocery store for me until Monday.

With my type 2 diabetes, I'm pretty much toast when TSHTF, too, so I really hope the Spirit is of a mind to have The Third Fate cut my thread short quickly and mercifully.  What scares me is that may  not happen if it's my karma to learn a lingering and unpleasant lesson about the consequences of abusing yourself when you're young and dumb.

Offline jdwheeler42

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2015, 09:01:56 AM »
With my type 2 diabetes, I'm pretty much toast when TSHTF, too, so I really hope the Spirit is of a mind to have The Third Fate cut my thread short quickly and mercifully.  What scares me is that may  not happen if it's my karma to learn a lingering and unpleasant lesson about the consequences of abusing yourself when you're young and dumb.
I can definitely relate to that.  My type 2 diabetes is mild enough it probably wouldn't kill me soon after TSHTF; so I prepare not so much in order to survive but more in case I do.  What really scares me is outliving my supply of migraine medication.  I do my best to increase it, but being that it is mostly by prescription, getting ahead is difficult.
Making pigs fly is easy... that is, of course, after you have built the catapult....

Offline Petty Tyrant

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2015, 01:31:25 PM »
Well, for some reason, the main page of the DD blog won't let me post a comment, so I'll post it here:

I can relate.  I have probably tendonitis in my right shoulder from what might be a tear in my rotator cuff, and I don't know how it happened!  I had the day off from work the day before the morning (two days ago) where I started noticing a problem.  The pain was very minor at first so I went to work at the grocery store and worked the way I normally do.  The next morning the pain and stiffness just started getting worse and kept on getting worse throughout the day.  In the early afternoon of yesterday, I pretty much lost the normal use of my right arm.  I tell you, I've never been so grateful to get my hands on a battle of vicodin!  So no doing grunt-work at the narcissistic grocery store for me until Monday.

With my type 2 diabetes, I'm pretty much toast when TSHTF, too, so I really hope the Spirit is of a mind to have The Third Fate cut my thread short quickly and mercifully.  What scares me is that may  not happen if it's my karma to learn a lingering and unpleasant lesson about the consequences of abusing yourself when you're young and dumb.

MR
If you think its tendonitis but you dont know how you did it, then it is more likely to be rheumatoid arthritis. It could be from sleeping on your shoulder using arm as a pillow, but also maybe not. As GO mentioned putting off going to get looked at in some cases its better that way because things might improve on their own or your immune system can fix it and you dont want to be prescribed expensive things with possible side effects, or just be given pain relief all to the glory of big pharma. However there are other conditions that the sooner you get correctly diagnosed the better to turn it around, therefore you should get a referral to a rheumatologist. Note Im not talking about osteoarthritis that is more a problem for the elderly with a slow seady onset.
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Offline Petty Tyrant

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2015, 01:46:50 PM »


I DO have medical insurance now, which is why I finally went to the doctor.

Far as finding the right guy to carve up my neck goes, I'll see who the internist recommends then do some research on what his success rate is with these sort of fixes.  I made it for 8 months or so already here, so I am not going to panic just because I saw some pictures of my spine.

Providence Hospital in Anchorage is pretty good.  I'll only go out of state if absolutely necessary.

RE

You are a stubborn SOB. As for 'success rate' you will only be able to access info on successes and not failures, that info and any malpractice suits are between him/her and the AMA. If they going to use laser technology they will send you where the equipment is and I dont know what tghe population of alaska is, not a lot im guessing so you might have to travel anyway.
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Offline Eddie

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2015, 01:51:26 PM »
When you have the kind of situation you're faced with now, you really have to do something. You won't be able to live long, and what time you will have will be filled with pain. I'm sorry for what you're going through, my brother.

 I used to  think that someday I might need back surgery, and I dreaded it like nothing else. I've known too many people who had surgery, got crappy results, and lived out the rest of their lives as drug addicts, popping hydrocodone and wishing for heroin, which is a far better drug, but unfortunately illegal. (Don't get me started on that one).

But more recently I've known several people who have gone through the kind of treatment you're probably going to need, and I've been very favorably impressed with the amazing recoveries I've seen people make.

I've got one friend who had the fusion, with great results, and another guy, a doctor I kinda know, who had the laser accurascope kind of procedure, with a complete recovery. Read some about about this treatment. It's not hocus pocus. It works. Here's a link to get you started.

http://northamericanspine.com/accurascope/

In short, back surgery is a big deal, but it's no longer the kind of Dr. Bovary surgery that leaves you as bad off or worse than you were before.

Other than work, I've never spent a single night in the hospital, and I hate the medical establishment far more than you might guess, having seen a lot from the inside...still, my advice is to seek out the best guy you can find, spend the time and money to collect a second opinion or two, and then pick the surgeon you feel the best about and let him do his job.



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Offline Surly1

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2015, 02:49:53 PM »
Well, for some reason, the main page of the DD blog won't let me post a comment, so I'll post it here:

With my type 2 diabetes, I'm pretty much toast when TSHTF, too, so I really hope the Spirit is of a mind to have The Third Fate cut my thread short quickly and mercifully.  What scares me is that may  not happen if it's my karma to learn a lingering and unpleasant lesson about the consequences of abusing yourself when you're young and dumb.

MR, on blog pages comments have to be moderated before they go up, unless you have a log-in. Or unless you ran into a different problem...

As to your final statement, there is a lot of "karma about the consequences of abusing yourself when young and dumb" going around...
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Offline Surly1

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2015, 03:01:13 PM »
Dedicated to RE, the one-armed fighter:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/QY1jzjTjIhY" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/QY1jzjTjIhY</a>

As you'll see you can do a lot of damage with one hand...
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Offline RE

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2015, 04:30:24 PM »
When you have the kind of situation you're faced with now, you really have to do something. You won't be able to live long, and what time you will have will be filled with pain. I'm sorry for what you're going through, my brother.

 I used to  think that someday I might need back surgery, and I dreaded it like nothing else. I've known too many people who had surgery, got crappy results, and lived out the rest of their lives as drug addicts, popping hydrocodone and wishing for heroin, which is a far better drug, but unfortunately illegal. (Don't get me started on that one).

But more recently I've known several people who have gone through the kind of treatment you're probably going to need, and I've been very favorably impressed with the amazing recoveries I've seen people make.

I've got one friend who had the fusion, with great results, and another guy, a doctor I kinda know, who had the laser accurascope kind of procedure, with a complete recovery. Read some about about this treatment. It's not hocus pocus. It works. Here's a link to get you started.

http://northamericanspine.com/accurascope/

In short, back surgery is a big deal, but it's no longer the kind of Dr. Bovary surgery that leaves you as bad off or worse than you were before.

Other than work, I've never spent a single night in the hospital, and I hate the medical establishment far more than you might guess, having seen a lot from the inside...still, my advice is to seek out the best guy you can find, spend the time and money to collect a second opinion or two, and then pick the surgeon you feel the best about and let him do his job.

Right now the pain is tolerable most days.  I'd hate to go through one of these operations and end up in worse shape after it.

I'm also really curious as to what this operation will cost?  I'm not supposed to be more than $1500 out of pocket as I understand the insurance plan, but I still have a dispute with my old insurance company on a few $1000 from the PAD Adventure.  This has to be way more expensive than that was, and it was pretty pricy.

RE
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Offline JoeP

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2015, 04:53:29 PM »
RE, if it looks like surgery is in the cards, I'll throw in my two cents...I recently had eye surgery and have had six surgeries over the years.  Three eye procedures and three for the knees. It might be you have had plenty of surgeries done and do not need my advice...if so you can just ignore the rest of this comment.

One of these procedures was in-patient.  It was to insert intacs in my left eye for a keratoconus issue I have.  This was a nice experience.  I took a prescribed valium before the surgery and was in and out of the office in very little time.  While it was happening, I had a conversation with the Eye Doc.

For the other five outpatient surgeries, it seemed like I was shuffled from one waiting room to another and it got old. All of these surgeries went well, but there was a sizeable time gap between when I checked into the hospital and when the event actually happened. So I recommend you mentally prep for this.

Another thing I'll say is that during my last surgery where I had a cataract procedure done with a TORIC astigmatism correcting intraocular lens inserted in my right eye, it seems to me the hospital got chincy with the anesthesia or there was an issue with the feed.  It was leaking and I mentioned this a couple of times, but no action. I was quite alert while the surgeon operated on my right eye and it was actually pretty cool. I even asked him what he was doing at a certain point halfway through the procedure and he calmly told me exactly what he was doing. I remember the entire time I was in the OR for this one.

Best wishes for a "good" outcome.
just my straight shooting honest opinion

Offline RE

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Re: I Consider Myself...the Luckiest Doomer...on the Face of the Earth
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2015, 05:07:36 PM »
RE, if it looks like surgery is in the cards, I'll throw in my two cents...I recently had eye surgery and have had six surgeries over the years.  Three eye procedures and three for the knees. It might be you have had plenty of surgeries done and do not need my advice...if so you can just ignore the rest of this comment.

One of these procedures was in-patient.  It was to insert intacs in my left eye for a keratoconus issue I have.  This was a nice experience.  I took a prescribed valium before the surgery and was in and out of the office in very little time.  While it was happening, I had a conversation with the Eye Doc.

For the other five outpatient surgeries, it seemed like I was shuffled from one waiting room to another and it got old. All of these surgeries went well, but there was a sizeable time gap between when I checked into the hospital and when the event actually happened. So I recommend you mentally prep for this.

Another thing I'll say is that during my last surgery where I had a cataract procedure done with a TORIC astigmatism correcting intraocular lens inserted in my right eye, it seems to me the hospital got chincy with the anesthesia or there was an issue with the feed.  It was leaking and I mentioned this a couple of times, but no action. I was quite alert while the surgeon operated on my right eye and it was actually pretty cool. I even asked him what he was doing at a certain point halfway through the procedure and he calmly told me exactly what he was doing. I remember the entire time I was in the OR for this one.

Best wishes for a "good" outcome.

I have only had one experience in the hospital, that was for the PAD Rotor Rooter job.

I chose to stay awake to watch and ask questions and only took a local anaesthetic.  I stayed on the table 5 straight hours to get both legs done in one shot.  It was supposed to be out-patient but one of the sutures popped and I passed out after trying to stand up and walk around, so they kept me overnight.  My overnight stay was fairly pleasant in a semi-private room.

This type of catheterization proceedure isn't done by a "surgeon", it's done by what they call an Invasive Radiologist.  They only have to pop a small hole in your inner thigh to insert the catheters.  Not very scary overall.

The operation on the neck is a completely different ballgame.  They have to basically peel open my neck to get at the bones, clear the channel if they can with microsurgical tools, fuse the bones, sew it all back up and then I have no idea how long recovery in the hospital but after that still wearing a neck collar for probably a few months, hard to move around, and I don't have a wife or kids to help me through it either.

Its not very appealing and no guarantee it will help either.

RE
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