Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Program Notes

A friend says I've scared readers. So let me tell you what's going on.

I don't have cancer and I'm not dying (at least not yet). For about a year, I had a low-grade infection no one could cure. This was finally pinpointed to my jaw, and -- in June -- I had seven hours of surgery to clean out the infection. Pulled a bunch of teeth to get there. Recovery has been slow.

On top of that, over the past three weeks, I've had shoulder pain and I haven't been able to hold a pen. That diagnosis, confirmed last Friday, is cervical spine stenosis. After taking a look at my MRIs, surgery has been recommended, probably next week (after I get a second opinion this week).

The pain and numbness makes it very difficult to work. For the moment, I can't both work and blog. Heck, I can't even sleep.

I appreciate the shout-out, and I'd be happy to work with a co-blogger--but so far, no luck finding one.

I will return to blogging when I can both blog and work. I just don't know when that will be.


OBloodyHell said...

Take care, good luck. Don't be like most guys and push too hard to get back on track before you're ready, that only delays the time when you really get back on track.


MaxedOutMama said...

Thank you very much for the disclosure. I'm praying for you - I have been badly worried.

Chronic infections can cause arthritis and exaggerate such problems; seek a second and a third opinion on the stenosis surgery.

If you do need the surgery, check out laser options. Don't have any surgery until you get the infection cleared because you are just asking for trouble.

You do need to take time off. I've had a problems similar to yours, and the pain is quite intense. God bless you and keep you.

Carl said...

Thanks for the wishes and prayers.

M_O_M, I just tested for "Sedimentation Rate-Westergren" and "C-Reactive Protein, Quant" (whatever they are)--both came out excellent, meaning (I think) the infection is gone.

I'll look into laser options. On a different point, so far, the Doc has strongly recommended against any kind of physical therapy--saying it could cause severe injury.

Anonymous said...

Roy said: Carl, I suspect that I am merely one of a group of people who know you only by NOFP yet are very concerned for your welfare. Once more finiteness confronts, forcing me to acknowledge limitations in what I can do to encourage. I will join M.O.M. in prayer, specifically for both your health and your growth from and thru this unpleasantness.

MaxedOutMama said...

That's great on the C-reactive! It hints that your heart is NOT in trouble.

Sed rate should be pretty reliable, but in encysted infections isn't always. Battling chronic infections can temporarily overload your immune system, so your doctor probably will be checking the different types of WBC counts to ensure that you are recovering properly.

If you have compression of the spinal cord severe enough for surgery, you want to ensure that you don't compress the tissues any further! Fortunately imaging is precise enough now to show what's going on.

There are different types of stenosis and your type may not be a candidate for laser surgery, but check into it. It can be astonishingly accurate, and there is probably less chance of infection in healing. The combination of a severe infection like that and surgery surgery in such a delicate area is not great.

suek said...

"For about a year, I had a low-grade infection no one could cure. This was finally pinpointed to my jaw"

Hey! Have you been on TV recently??? I think I saw that diagnosis on one of the shows (can't remember his name - the obnoxious doctor one) I don't usually watch because he's a repulsive human being!

They operated on him too. Didn't say anything about having to lose teeth.

Kidding aside - I hope the issues get settled completely.

"Heck, I can't even sleep."

I can't imagine. That alone would be torture.

Powerboss said...

Carl, You are in my prayers. I still maintain your blog posts are the best I've ever seen. Take your time and recover!

Bob in LA said...

Carl who I have the pleasure of working with, I am pleased to have this update on your condition. Thinking about you.


maxcomputer said...

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KitWistar said...

Is a neurologist on your spinal stenosis team?

May whatever powers/god(s) be out there watch over you during this anxious & stressful time. You are in my thoughts, take care Carl.

Carl said...

Thanks for all your support, and yes, I chose a surgical neurologist.