Thursday, October 14, 2010

Was I built with a self-destruct mode?

Seriously. Why is it that I can't just have some surgery and recover without some other worry? Why do I always have that wee bit of extra something or other to complicate matters?

On the first elbow surgery, the nerve kept pooping back into the place where it was entrapped, so the surgeon used my innermost layer of skin and the soft exterior of the humerus to create an internal sling to hold it in place. This put me in extra pain during my recovery.

Then came the knee surgery, which proved so painful that I was back in the ER that very night to get injections of a painkiller even stronger than those that I normally take. And because the doc removed approximately 40% of the medial meniscus, my knee is STILL healing, and starts "acting up" when I'm on my feet too long. (That's about 10 minutes.)

Now we have the other elbow, and it's not bothering me much. Oh, it itches like crazy, but I think that's a combination of really dry skin, arm hair matted down by the bandages, aqnd the steri-strips used to help keep the incision sealed and protected. So that's not really much of a problem.

It's the fact that I feel like I have a fever and my neck is stiff and achy. Somewhere in this room of mine is a thermometer. Of course, there's also the chance that it fell off my desk, into the garbage next to it, and was thrown away months ago. So, I have a possible fever, stiff neck, and...well, it was brief, and it's actually become kind of common for me, but there was an added bout of nausea earlier this evening. I tend to blame my painkillers for the nausea, along with possible diabetic gastroparesis. Now here's the scary part: add these three symptoms together, and I just might have meningitis.

Huzzah for crippling bacteria!

But this is a case of me knowing the symptoms of an illness and coincidentally having said symptoms, when all it could be is me being overtaxed from surgery and then sleeping wrong last night. I've run low-grade fevers after surgery before. The nausea, as stated, is actually somewhat common. So this could be a solid case of nothing. Just some discomfort.

I'm going to play it safe. Tomorrow, should my neck still be enough of a bother, I'll make a call to my doctor's office and see if they can check me out immediately. If not, I'll head for the ER to get some blood work done. Better I should get checked out and find out it's nothing than discover too late that it's something serious.

For the record, however, I should note that I AM kind of worried. Self-diagnosis using information on the internet has plenty of people apparently developing cancer. (Because every cough ever developed once the internet is consulted MUST be cancer, right?) I mean, meningitis actually has a fairly high mortality rate in adults (It's 19 to 37% according to Wiki.) Especially the bacterial kind, since I'm fairly certain this isn't viral. (No outbreaks here in KS.) So I have some fear that this may be my final post...

Ah, but the symptoms I have aren't "bad enough." I don't have a HIGH fever. I'd feel it. I don't have the horrific headache that should be present. I'm not vomiting. My neck may be stiff and achy, but I'm still willing to blame that from sleeping wrong, what with trying to sleep in only one position while trying to keep my arm elevated on a pillow.

Altered mental status, though. Maybe this paranoia is a symptom? I'll talk myself into a worrying frenzy if I keep this up.

I'm off to watch some TV via Hulu, then try to get more rest. Be well, my friends...and I'll try to do the same. =)

1 comment:

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