Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Oh, and the ankle.

Avulsion fracture. Happens when a tendon is over stretched and pulls a bit of bone away from the rest. Treat like any other sprain, just with more wrapping, ice and ibuprofen. Should heal in 3-5 weeks and pain should subside by weekend. That's good, I do like walking.

Things I still need to ask the Plastic Surgeon

How long before I will be able to wear a knee brace again? It's amazing to me how much more of my knee I can feel and experience when it is not sitting under the little black rain cloud of osteoarthritis. Some stability of the joint would help me feel less like I am grinding it to pieces. I hope. I can't imagine thighs that will allow me to wear a brace comfortably.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Plastics Update

Wednesday May 26th is now the day. Hopefully I will be nice and rested from a spontaneous vacation.

I met with surgeon on Friday afternoon. A year later this is a different experience. I kind of wish I had had all my plastics before I had taken Anatomy and Physiology, but alas, I did not. Hard to think about cutting through all those tissue layers, healing process and the bugs that can get in there now that I have much better understanding of how the body works. Last years experience makes perfect sense now that I have taken Mirco, I understand how the body can react but how it's possible that there isn't an actual infection.

We chatted scar revision first. PS thinks that should help my "awareness issue". He only cuts down through skin layer. Not much else there but what ever scar tissue is attached to the bone he leaves as is. He is also going to cauterize all the blood vessels that are left from too tight somethings over the years as well. He said he'll do his best to make my knee look pretty. YaY!

As for thighs I really have no idea how much will go but I suspect a lot. There will be two layers of stitches, the PA called him meticulous! There will be drains based on scar shape. That had been a change since last time and again indicates to me that much skin will be going. Scar is T shaped that will run up and attach to TT scar from last summer and will wrap half way under my buttock in back. Hard for me to picture but he said he wants the cross of T higher in front for a better shape. That's also where drains will pop out.

In addition he said that after looking at my pictures he'll be doing some lipo on my right thigh on the outside. I can see the asymmetry in the mirror.... A bit weirded out by the cosmetic portion of all this. Really I think of it as functional not cosmetic. I'm so hesitant to ask the vanity questions in the office and was surprised about lipo in that spot too. That's something I really can't think about.... Scarred by that show The Swan on Fox several years back. They did a ton of lipo on those ladies. Looked brutal, but then again I'll be asleep. I'm also paying out of pocket so what ever he has to do to give me great legs is fine by me I guess.

I'm trying to give my body best shot at hassle free recovery. Eating well, lots of protein, even a vitamin for next five weeks or so. Laying off the drugs and alcohol too. Hell, if getting down on my knees and begging my body to cooperate would help I'd do that too.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Three falls in four weeks

My ankle is a mess. I need to pitch the Dansko clogs, they are killing me. Every fall recently has been in those shoes. They feel good but they are too high and the heel to narrow. I know this and yet I put them on again today. I was tying to be good person and head off to class early to get some work done. My semester while ok, has not been great. February sadness morphed into a painful and preoccupied March that has stretched into April with my knee. /blogress

I think the clogs are okay when my ankle is strong but it is so far from that right now. Yikes. The pain is making me twitchy. Thank goodness I was just outside the apartment. A couple people stopped. That's always encouraging, they don't stop when you're fat. I'd still rather be in pain than be 345 but I must get this under control. Beating myself up is something of my past.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


This is the nicest version of this picture that I am currently willing to post. I feel a bit exposed, but I think you can see what I am having an issue with. I'm not sure how much will go, but probably more than I think. Surgery is going to be rescheduled for the end of May just in case M and I are able to escape down the coast for a bit after my finals end.

I can wait one more week. I've already waited a lifetime.




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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

I need to stop saying things out loud

Like, oh hey, I haven't experienced that weird reaction this time after the Synvisc on Sunday. Fast forward a couple of days and although it was slightly different this time, (maybe because longer time frame) that same creepy cold tingling, joint pain and feet and hand puffiness returned. Drugs are only as good as their side effects. Glad it has mostly passed but still freaked out by how that rolled through my body yesterday. Yikes! I was on train headed to Providence and I felt this rush of reaction (for lack of a better word) started in my neck and and chest and worked its way down my extremities. Jaw pain started shortly before, and then it also worked it's way down through more joints... elbows, wrists and fingers, knees and toes. Ick. I've been shaking my hands all day to keep it at bay and walked a bunch. This feeling is neurological I think? I know enough about the body to know what I don't know. But this is not in my head, and I wonder what's causing this. What are my cells up to? History tells me it will pass. But creepy man, Creepy.

Other things I shouldn't say out loud include, oh hey, I've been really good to my current MacBook, no catastrophes yet. And then I go and drip Boursoin on the track pad and kill the connection. 150.00$ stupid snack tax later I can get to my stats homework.

And last but not least, yesterday I proclaimed my excitement over my next round of plastics being in 5 weeks. Looking like 7 now. Two more weeks won't kill me but I am ready to get on with this. Still, hopefully the delay means a vacation and I certainly wouldn't mind a week off with M.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Hello knee!

How nice to be out from underneath all that pain for bit. I'm still aware of it and how it works (or doesn't) but thankfully it's pain free. Well, arthritis pain free. My knee hurts in many ways, but the others I can deal with without being a raving bitch.

If only I could ditch this chest cold...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Magical and Revolutionary

Too bad Apple doesn't make new knees.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Vegetarian Homemade Peeps

Just went back and read my blog from last year. I'll stop posting about my knee for a bit when these appointments end. It's just constantly on my mind right now.

I had a nice Easter. Spent it with my husbands family in RI. They do food at holidays different than we used to with my Gram. Biggest difference is there is just less of it but that doesn't take away from celebration. I ate what I wanted and was satisfied Never any seconds unless it's desert. I love the freedom that comes with just living with food. I'm vigilant but days like today are great reminder of how far I've come. No eating till I'm overfull and uncomfortable but no denying myself anything either. It's a happy balance that is a result of years of paying attention.

That being said I wish there was something my M could have eaten. We/I need to speak up about need for lower sodium options for him at family gatherings. This is fact of life, just like cousin's vegetarianism. Too be fair though-- she made her own peeps and picked up her own soy roast. I think I'll take my cue from her and at the next function and just come prepared.

I have confidence in me!

I'm settling in to watch my most favorite movie ever. I have some A&P studying to do but it can wait. This post has been on my mind since Thursday. Maria was just singing about having confidence in yourself.

I lack that in my knee. Broken beyond repair is something that I struggle with because intellectually I know this is not my fault. I'd been very good about no tears in the new doctor's office, but Thursday was a torrent. All sorts of emotional tears too, nothing actually hurt except my heart. Ugh.

Tears of embarrassment. I hate falling. I hate that this happens to me and that I am so unwilling to do anything about it. That's where the embarrassment comes in. I've done so much good for my body but I am totally unwilling to do more. And by more I mean doing things that will cause more pain. I know if I don't build up strength that I am risking more damage in the long run and more health care dollars. When I was heavy I was embarrassed to be seen as burden on health care system. I'll add this was way before all the chatter about fat people causing the end of the world that goes on now. So even though I didn't do this to myself (unlike the weight) I am still responsible. I feel a sense of personal responsibility to not cost any more or do any more damage, but to do something about it = PAIN. I don't know if I am explaining this well, but my own persona mantra of being the best person you can be without sacrificing your own happiness certainly applies here. The physical pain that will be required to grind out some strength so I might not fall far out weighs the tears of embarrassment.

Tears of annoyance and frustration. Turns out they actually do have the SynviscOne. Doc brought in wrong box and I caught it immediately. Funny, last week when I asked the PA told me they only had the 3 shot version. Sigh. Wonder where the breakdown in communication happened there.

And lastly...

Tears of pain. These were emotional not physical and pretty much what open the flood gates. I'm pretty sensitive when it comes to the condition of my knee. When he pushed the needle in he said something under his breath about scar tissue. I let it slide at the moment but asked him about it as he was washing up. He said that there was so much of it, so much resistance, that you almost needed a hammer to get the needle past it. Nice mental image. I think I may have actually winced, I know my heart did. Tears started coming shortly after that. This doc has no physical experience with my knee except for this one shot, he's never seen the inside except for on film. I know there is scar tissue in there, I live it, being reminded in such a way was a wee bit hard on my heart.

So I need to go in there for the last shot on Thursday and have some confidence in me. No tears.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Immediately Obvious

The iPad is my new favorite thing. It's lighter, but heavier than I expected. I'm just happy I don't have to carry my Macbook. iPad is interactive delightful little version of that screen. I love it.

Yes, I know I blogged about not getting one. It was a lovely gift from my husband.

Friday, April 2, 2010

You've done too much?

I hiked, well, my version of it, in the Fells with my twin sis this morning. After sitting on my ass all week feeling sorry for myself it was good to get out. I laced up the hiking boots and off we went. She took some pictures I think... We went up and down and up and over and across. Lots of rocks, water and generally things to be aware of. I had to remind myself to look up every once in a while.

Now I am resting on the sofa and my knee is doing this fun little buzzy thing. It's nerve related no doubt, just near where the needle was yesterday. It's not painful, just distracting, almost like a tiny little pulsating electrical current. I'll ice it and see what happens. Regardless, so awesome to get outside. I swear I am a better person in the sunshine!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Just breathe

I couldn't help but think of my Great Grandmother today. Many years ago when I was on one my drives back from Boulder to Boston because I was too fat to fly I made a stop in western PA to gather up her and her stuff. I was tasked with driving Grandma (as she was known) from the farm she had grown up on just outside of Pittsburgh to my Gram's place on the Cape. The drive was a bit stressful, she was 90+ by then and we needed to stop frequently. She was also pretty much silent for most of the ride. She was the type for whom if you inquired how she was, she would tell you she was old. I tried to make conversation but as the trip progressed we lapsed into a more or less comfortable silence-- except for when I turned on the radio to help concentrate on the road. That guaranteed she would talk to me. Today was kind of like that, when you want a moment of radio silence, there is someone asking you all these questions.

I had my second Synvisc shot this afternoon. No PA today, a fellow apparently, but he was no where to be seen so I got to spend some qt with the Doc  He has a very kind touch thankfully as I'm still a mess after the fall. He took a moment to figure out where to administer the shot as he did not want to go through the bruise which is getting pretty massive as it disseminates. That impressed me actually, consideration goes a long way. Amazing too that with such a light touch he could tell where there was fluid or blood or who knows what. I don't really like to think about what the inside of my knee looks like when this happens but you could tell he was picturing it. Anyway, I've had lots of shots by now and really I just like to sit there and breathe. The nurse who "installed" my first PICC line taught me how and it's a technique that has served me well. 2 mls is not much but when the fluid is as viscous as the Synvisc it has to go in slow. I'd say about a third of the way along he asked me if I was fine. "Yes, I'm fine," I said as I exhaled.

"Are you sure you're fine? Or are you just saying that?" he asked again.

What are you my husband? No, I didn't say that, but I did think it. I explained how the breathing helps me to be okay while it's happening... this as he pushed on the plunger forcing in the rest of the "treatment". I'll twitch when I think about it later (like right now) but with a needle an inch and a half into your joint is not the right moment. Concentrating on breathing keeps me calm and spaz free. Needles and shots are just one of those things I have to endure and being all squeamish about them is not in my best interest. Suck it up and deal is how I do, but hopefully next week, I can do it in silence.

Always a learning curve with a new doctor.

"You look nice."

I love hearing this every morning. And pretty much without fail the husband says this to me before he wanders away for the day. I feel tiny this morning! An over washed and shrunken denim skirt from J Crew in an 8. A medium sweater from Banana Republic and the cutest underthings ever from a store I spent a lifetime wishing I could shop in.

Life is good.