Thursday, April 28, 2011

So...much...pain...

Today has been one of those day where I simply want to tear my leg off and be done with everything from the knee on down. I'm holding out for doctors' appointments that I have on Monday and Tuesday, but it's rough.

I went and had x-rays and blood work done yesterday. I have no results on either. But the folks at the x-ray department did hand me a copy of the x-rays on disc. And you know what that means, don't you? Yep! It meant I was going to head home and pop that disc into my computer in a feeble attempt at reading them. That I have no formal education on reading an x-ray meant little. I was going to try.

Really shouldn't have done that.

I would love to post the pictures here, or anywhere for that matter, but there's no way to reformat the x-rays from the program on the disc. The pictures that interested me most were those of the ankle. Now, if you look online for x-rays of a healthy ankle, you'll notice a lot of white in the joint. There's a lot of bones in that area, and when they overlap as they do in an x-ray, it appears as a frightening solid white mass that is actually normal. On mine, however, there was even MORE white in the area. Having had doctor's point at x-rays to show me things, I think I'm seeing a lot of "calcium clouds." They appear over bones that are trying to heal after being damaged. If I'm right, my calcium clouds form an actual "calcium storm front."

Having had to be up and around yesterday, lugging that CAM walker on my right foot, my knee is complaining today. Remember, this knee is now missing 40% of its medial meniscus, so it wasn't very happy to begin with. So now it hurts.

All of this pain has me wanting to keep taking pills until it goes away. A part of me doesn't want diminished pain; I want it GONE! That's not going to happen, so I shoot for something that is semi-comfortable under the circumstances. And even that's not easy. I have been desperately trying to stay within the parameters of the doses given by my doctors, and for the very first time in a very long time, I broke the rules. I took an extra pill yesterday, and was rewarded with a degree of comfort. And that, my friends, is bad news.

Why is it bad? Because I'm going to sit here in pain and be sorely tempted, (pun fully intended), to take extras to gain relief. It means running out of pills faster. It also means risking an accidental overdose. I may not be feeling these painkillers 100% anymore, but that doesn't mean they aren't having their alternate effect of suppressing my respiratory system. I could cause myself to accidentally stop breathing. Yes..."accidentally." And that doesn't make for happily ever after with Becky at all.

Thus, I wait for Monday's appointment with my PCP, and my Tuesday's appointment with the new podiatrist. On both days, if necessary, I will be discussing some way toward pain management that doesn't involve the possibility of accidental overdoses. In my mind, the most effect method would be a morphine drip. Morphine directly into a vein would be more effective, and would be managed by computer, not allowing for an overdose at all. And if there's breakthrough pain, I'll press the button and get a boost of morphine, also controlled.

But can this be done at home? Will it ABSOLUTELY need to happen in a hospital? Is there no chance of a nurse being assigned to come to my home daily to check on the machine, the catheter, and meds? I have no answers, and hope to get them next week. I don't want to be hospitalized unless absolutely necessary, and would rather not be on a morphine drip. But if that's the answer, I'll go that route, if only to not have to lie in bed, wincing every now and again because it feels that bad.

Be well, all, and DFTBA!

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