Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Sore Leg and broken bones

I had a recurring problem since May, 2006. The final diagnosis was a herniated disc, L5, lower back. How the final diagnosis was made is an epic of Odyssean proportions. I had pain in my knee for several months. It was inconsequential. In July, while walking the dogs, I could not move up King Street. It was as if my knee welded shut. Off to my physician, Dr. Cameron. Unfortunately he was on vacation so I saw his partner. She said I was getting bow-legged and needed arch supports. That should have helped. I went to "O My Sole" for some arch supports and they pointed me to a physiotherapy clinic down the mall. I went in, made an appointment, was prodded and poked, and was told I had weak shin muscles. The report was sent to Dr. C. I met with him almost twice a month from August to the end of May, '07. During the visits we (he) narrowed the pain down through many tests: blood work times five; X-rays times three; Cat scan times two; Bone scan, MRI at a clinic at a cost of $800; orthopedic specialist who said it was not his area of expertise ( he thought it was a stenosis - it wasn't); and , anti-penultimately, Dr. O, a back surgeon, who looked at the MRI and said, "herniated disc." He eventually sent a letter to Dr. C. recommending cortisone therapy. Dr. C. forwarded the letter to an anesthesiologist , Dr. F., a terrific guy, and on July 5, 2007, fourteen months since it first started , (and quite honestly, if it were not for a couple of cancellations, I would still be waiting) I got my first treatment. What a way to begin retirement!
It took fifty-eight years, one month, and seven days for me to break a bone. On Friday, July 13, 2007, John and I were biking in Shubie Park and I was going down a hill. I didn't see anyone coming up the hill until I was in a turn. I swerved to avoid a collision, fell, and landed on my back. I do not recall the events of my spill. I swerved and the next thing I remembered was John holding my hand. It happened so quickly. Fortunately there was a cell phone available and 911 dispatched an ambulance which whisked me to the Dartmouth General. X-rays revealed the upper humerus broken in three places. So, I guess, I broke it good. I was released about 4 PM and was waiting for Cathy (my wife at the time) to bring up the car. I didn't make it. I fainted outside the emergency door and the staff decided I should stay overnight. They recommended that I be sent to the Queen Elizabeth ll Hospital and after a series of x-rays, surgery was not an immediate recourse. Rest and a sling. When I got home it was said to me that it was an inconvenience to Cathy that I broke my arm. I replied that I made sure it was my job to inconvenience her as best I could by purposely having an accident and becoming immobile for a couple of days. She hired a dog walker to look after the boys while I just sat around the condo feeling sorry for myself. Imagine, my broken shoulder was an inconvenience. Man, the things I did to piss her off.
On July 19, I went for reassessment and the doctor said surgery wasn't required. He put me in another sling and sent me home with a call back assessment for August 16. He recommended physiotherapy. I took physio for 4 months and it helped a whole lot. After all is said and done, I have 95% mobility of my left arm. Not bad. But I won't be able to play the violin. LOL
By the way, the cortizone treatment lasted 3 years and has helped ease my pain.


  1. I didn't mean to, but I actually laughed right out loud. Now that I know the lengths you might go to piss someone off, I may have to rethink our

  2. Sorry it took so long to comment on your post. I'm not sure why but the other night I just couldn't get past "O My Sole" but today I can finally finish reading your post.

    I've gone to extreme lengths in an effort to piss of my spouse too. Like going through natural menopause early so he'd stop bugging me to have another kid ;-)