doodlemaier: (Default)
I’ve always thought of health as a three-legged stool, a balancing act between:

Diet, exercise, and rest. If one of those legs should weaken and break the whole caboodle falls apart!

1. Diet: look into an ayurvedic diet. Not a one-size-fits-all, ayurvedic medicine is based on one’s age, the season of the year and, most importantly, one of three body types (called “Doshas”) Everyone is a mix of all three body types, with one being somewhat dominant. I’m still learning and doing research on this but I’m convinced it’s the way to eat!

2. Exercise: low-impact exercise - yoga, Tai Chi, and all that. Swimming (although, I don’t enjoy it personally), bicycling, and brisk walks. Anything that precludes injuring yourself is best. Think “eustress”, not distress!


3. Rest: I’d sleep 20 hours a day if I could but, ultimately, that would interrupt my nap time ;)

The mental aspect:
Relax, nothing is permanent and it's later than we think. Become a life-long learner. Stay inquisitive, read everything you can get your hands on! Take up new hobbies and travel regularly (although I don’t travel too often) Keeping an open mind and sense of humor is the best stuff on earth! Every experience in life is a lesson, in fact, all there is in life are lessons.

Emotional stuff:
Avoid addiction at all costs! Attachment is the sole source of mankind's unhappiness. Everything’s good in moderation. Forgiveness goes a long way, too, especially directed toward one's self. Let go of anger and resentment whenever you notice it weighing on your mind. That’s right! Set it down and walk away as often as you notice it even if it’s a thousand times a day! Pain in life is inevitable, suffering is optional. Don’t waste your energy regretting the past, as there’s nothing you can do to change it now. Don’t waste energy worrying about the future and what it holds. If there’s anything to be done about future calamity the only time to take action is now. The moment is all the time we ever have. Someone wise once said “The gateway to eternity is a very narrow passage”. I think they were referring to time and being present. If you stop to think about it the moment at hand contains everything we need. “Uncleared” emotions are distress and settle into the physical tissues of the body where they become disease. Faith in a higher power never hurt anyone (and they don't ask much of us) but don’t feel the need to "believe" anything. Just as the body doesn't need the mind to exist neither does the soul require an attachment to some abstract truth to carry on. Reality is not stranger than we imagine, its stranger than we can imagine.

If I think of anything else, I'll email but I’m having this incredible conversation now with a few people and it seems to go on forever!
doodlemaier: (Default)
I'm sure someday I'll be grateful for health insurance, but in the mean time Networks, referrals, co-pays & deducible and primary care physicians are bullshit counter intuitive and I'm way too ill-tempered to deal with nice people over the phone. What ever happened to one wound, one doctor? Knock on wood, I don't have health issues/injuries often enough to get into effective practice with this shit. The back story is that I originally injured my shoulder when I was 25 by throwing something (the same way pro pitchers tear their rotator cuffs). Draping that arm over a hollow body acoustic guitar for all those years probably didn't help at all, either. Occasionally, I feel it slip out when I sleep on it. Getting old blows. Wah!

So, on Sunday the right arm practically falls off. The ER knocks it back into place and suggests that I follow up with an orthopedist. Sound enough advice after 13 years of coddling it, but before I do that I have to get referral from my primary care phys. But wait. . . insurance has changed - got to get updated info to all concerned parties. I can't just call to get a referral, I have to go in and see her. Suddenly she's not in my network. Dog-chase-tail. It's the fuckin Xeno's paradox of healthcare.

Now to put the cart before the horse I made (and subsequently canceled) an appointment with Dr. Davis at Center of Orthopedic and Sports Medicine in Merrifield where H had PT for her neck (but upon reading this review on Yelp. . . )

When I, as a patient, ask how the doctor knows that the ligaments in my ankle are just pulled and not partially torn, the answer coming from my MD's mouth should not just be "Because I told you they weren't." This was just one of the many curt comments out of Dr. Davis's mouth during my visit. I am not an idiot, in fact I am also a healthcare provider, so to talk down to me throughout this visit was not only an insult to me as a patient - it also made me ashamed to know that there were people in the field who thought it was okay to act like that. When the PA came in to give me crutches I asked him if the other MD in the practice was any nicer. He paused, a long pause that was enough of an answer for me, and then said that the other MD was nice too.

I would add my complaints about the 70 minute wait before anyone saw me, or the fact that they made me pay upfront for the pair of crutches and lace-up ankle brace ($135.00 - seriously) but the poor service and lack of any bedside manor should be enough of a reason to avoid this practice. If you're not good at the one thing you do every day (patient care) how am I supposed to trust that you're good at the other things you say you're good at. Needless to say I am making my follow-up appointment and PT sessions with a different Orthopedic Surgeon.

I hope this review saves someone from making the same mistake I did. Avoid this practice if you're looking for good patient care.
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Make that 3! I have a certain bias against professional doctors to begin with for exactly this kind of attitude. It's my opinion that a lot of bright and talented people are attracted to the medical field because they're bright and talented and think they're worthy of the prestige that comes with the position, not because they're natural healers (intuitives, and I don't necessarily mean hedge witches and mambo kings). And even if they start out that way their education should inform their natural talents, not override them. The finest medical instrument is the patient's own sense and a doctor that doesn't use that is more harm than good. So, I'm going to see if I can get an appt with Pop's surgery salesman @ the Anderson Clinic. </screed>

Sick Boy

Oct. 5th, 2007 11:47 am
doodlemaier: (Doom)
is sick )
doodlemaier: (Doom)
Yeah, that's a pretty good graphic representation of the pain and swelling related to a week-an-a-½ old sprain. Strangely enough, life-long, dogging injuries are beginning to pile up on the left side of my body for a change.
doodlemaier: (PartyDevil)
. . Helps the medicine go down!

Tequila yesterday for helping with the Passion Gala. Flu shots at work today.

What will tomorrow bring?
doodlemaier: (Alone in the dark)
So, for those of you who happen to peer into my puffy, red-rimmed eyes today, I just want you to know, I'm not as drunk as I look!
doodlemaier: (Doom)
So begins my life as a gimp. Went to the doctor today about my knee (whaaa! My knee hurts, doc!) so you know it must've gotten bad. It's still not good here a full week later, but while H and I were in Chincoteague it felt by Saturday that I had aged forty years in two days. I told the doc that it stems from an acl and meniscus injury I sustained in a introductory Kung Fu class back in '96 where the instructor failed to stretch us before hand. I had it surgeried later in the year and lately the menicus injury's been giving me trouble - and a lot of it!

Doc said there's not a whole lot at this stage that there's to be done about it. On the one hand there's still a screw in there that held the torn acl in place while it healed but is only taking up space now. Removing that could very well do more harm than good. So it's a balance between how many days per year I'm willing to limp around on it as it is, and how much more damage I'm willing to risk to stave that off for a few more years. She tells me that the orthoscopic surgery that I had ten years ago isn't performed nearly as often since the advent of better mri technology. So I was sent home with a referral to an orthapedic surgeon whom she warned me is 'in the business of selling surgeries' and a pamphlet of exercises designed for the 'care and feeding of your bum knee'. Here are my options and the choice is mine.

But this is why I really appreciate Doc Moghissi she doesn't try to sell me on procedures and medications I don't need, and she takes the time to dumb down the how's and why's of the issue at hand so that I'm better able to make a decision about what I can do about it. Never does she try to tell me what I need to do. . .

So in the ten years I've had her as my PCP (dealer?) I've brought to her only three 'issues' but she's has never steered me wrong.
for your viewing displeasure. squik factor: elevated )
doodlemaier: (Default)
It's coming back to the grind that does the damage! )
doodlemaier: (Doom)
I open the door and step inside, I am inside my right shoulder. . .
There, I see a ball of warm, healing light. My pain is a ball of warm, healing light. . .

I don't think so! Be it my first day of senior citizenship or no, I called the doctor on this one; and when I call the doctor something's falling off or needs to be removed. Electrodes, ultra-sound, some revved-up tiger balm, and a work-over of a couple of snap, crackily-pop manipulations and I'm (hopefully) on the road to recovery. Though I walked out of my first-ever visit to the chiroprator's feeling slightly more of a trainwreck than I had before entering, a couple hours in the 'after' effect definitely has me more symmetrical and enjoying a wider range of motion once again. I'm feeling rather more like my young self than my old self!

Prognosis: torticollis

Dystonia (of which torticollis is a form) is a neurological disorder
oh, wonderful! characterized by involuntary muscle contractions which force certain parts of the body into abnormal, sometimes painful, movements or positions. Dystonia is the third most common movement disorder after Parkinson’s Disease and Tremor, affecting more than 300,000 people in North America. It is often misunderstood by the public and misdiagnosed by doctors. It is not a psychiatric disorder nor does it affect intellect. Dystonia is not fatal, but depending on the form, can be very painful and also quite debilitating.

Primary dystonias often seem to “just happen.”

~info from http://www.torticollis.org/
doodlemaier: (Doom)
There is no way to walk, stand, drive, lean, move, hold my right arm, sit, lay down, roll over, or beg that does not send a shooting pain somewhere! By 7:30 am I exceeded doubled my RDA of Naproxen - which obviously isn't working. Applied heat didn't work, liquor didn't work, a session with Wookie Chirpractor didn't help - and that never fails to heal all ills . . . At this point I can't even hollowly wish that I were ten years younger because in 1995 I was dealing with a torn ACL; behind that episode this is the 2nd most consistently painful thing I've experienced. At least then I had health insurance.

The time has come to seek out an old Chinese man with a handful of needles!

. . . Any suggestions?
doodlemaier: (Doom)
Even being a desk-jockey has its hazards. Pain, like the blows from a big hammer, radiating from the right shoulder up into my neck and down as far as just below the elbow, and when leaning the arm on a mouse pad makes the arm feel like it's separating from behind and below at the deltoid and from above and in front at the clavical. Originally blamed on a hyper-extended rhumboid, a pinched nerve behind the right scapula has made life uncomfortable in my own skin for almost a month now. Although it doesn't get in the way of some rather pedestrian rock trotting, losing too much range of motion now to let this go. Ibuprofilactics no longer delivering as promised, medical doctors no good, anyway, insurance non-existant. ScottyBoy, requesting a wooky chiroprachtic session . . . will be by this evening.
doodlemaier: (Default)
Tonight Helcat debuts at CTG (the City Tavern Grill) in Ye Olde Towne Manassas (Va. . . each and every Tuesday until glorious Doom, spinning the bestest/darkest of the 80's 90's) - Def not a good time for me to be feeling the way that I do, now. Worked today (no news there) and made some money that's sitting in my pocket as I type (now there's news!) All that blast about algebraine headaches turned out to be the flu (Hey capitalisto/bio-engineers! Create an annoying ailment, turn it loose on society and sell the inoculations to the masses at an inflated, but generally affordable fee. . . 'the microsofluenza' virus) Even after the fever broke on Sunday evening (and not a moment too soon!), I've been plagued the last couple of days by chest pain, more specific to the left side of the body. . . radiating out to behind my ear and downward to around the diaphragm and solar-plexus. It does not throb but is more of a constant dull ache like that of sore muscles that is worse as I try to inhale deeply. It didn't keep me from bantering about with a 20lb. chainsaw all day, cutting up a few fallen trees (a couple of which were a full 3½ feet in diameter!) but it did keep me short of breath and slow me down. A man my age has zero business having chest pains of any kind!

I've yet to parse if the two are related, but what started out as mild exhileration and energy to spare has become nothing more than acute irritability that's rendered me unfit for human consumption. Resultantly, I'm skipping class now, especially since I've missed half of the lecture to sit in traffic on the way there. But I've been notably more 'caught up' in mind and it's non-ceasing commentary on all things perceptual. Not that it's a been bad thing recently but it usually tends in that direction eventually.

The chest pain has made me think a lot about my own mortality (see the mind/emotion feedback loop making a random event into the best of the worst case scenarios). Certainly I'm concerned. . .whenever I seek the advice of a professional of any kind - it's fuckin' serious! Although I haven't talked to a doctor yet I intend on doing so, even though I'm self-employed and carry all the liability of (non-existing) health insurance which that implies. A battery of tests and who knows how much money later I will have discovered that, A) nothing is wrong, or B) something is wrong and I'm going to have to make some choices.

In the event of 'B' I would be willing to take up a practice of regular and active relaxation, eat yucky food containing no sugar, fats or High-density lipids, and exercise everyday; this event would serve as my artificial and extrinsic catalyst toward any honest attempt to improve the quality of my health. Now I'm sure that if this is a heart condition then the scientific community has some costly and dangerous service to sell me which is designed to preserve and prolong but I'm just not into that - no cutting! I don't care if I'm minutes away from full cardiac arrest, I don't need some expensive procedure to save what comes out, objectively, to be only a half, or a third of my life - DO NOT RESUSCITATE! Sorry if this sounds selfish, it is actually meant as the opposite. I'm not afraid of death, only of the actual 'dying' part and I'd rather that process didn't take the last ten years of my life. In fact, when it's my time I'd like to get it over with as quickly as possible without all the hullabaloo that comes with it in a society such as ours.

I'm not saying that my life, as it is, isn't worth living; in fact I have more to live for in this very moment than all of the moments of this incarnation combined - My beautiful daughter, my loving family and friends, an new and exciting relationship with a gorgeous young woman (much more about her to come!) and all the possibilities that spring from these relationships. I look back over a life that I'm more or less pleased with, the low and thin spots tend to gather around my career and education, but for the 1st time I'm truly at peace with everything as it is. Every regret is expunged through forgiveness. Memory has strange powers of perfecting everything. But even these occurrences are really only symbolic, sign posts pointing to a deeper reality, a more subtle frequency on the electromagnetic scale. There's plenty more here I'd like to do and in actuality plenty more I have to learn; I honestly don't feel it's my time. But, I'm convinced there is nothing in this life I love that death can separate me from.

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