elephant’s child

Ok, some folks have been asking why I’m insisting that my doctors practice more and other status tidbits on Facebook indicating that I’ve not a very happy camper. Rather than having to answer piecemeal, I’m going to do this the easy way and blog about it instead.

About two months ago, I hurt myself getting into the car. I was holding my weight up with my right foot to straighten out my shirt and get settled in when I felt something pull/tear/pop on the right side of my low back. It didn’t really hurt at that time and I figured I’d just strained a muscle or something…no big deal.

A few days later, I noticed an ache in my right butt cheek or lower back when I had to bend over. The original injury was so NOT a big deal, I didn’t even know what I’d done to myself. I just chalked it up to getting older and didn’t think about it. A couple of weeks later, it not only hurt to bend over, but now it hurt when I sat down. Nothing huge, just enough to make me grunt when I sat down. About that same time, I was getting in the car and recreated what I’d done to myself the first time and I about hit the roof. OUCH!

After that I went to my dr. He diagnosed “sacroiliitis” and sent me to physical therapy. Just to be safe we did x-rays, which came back completely normal. At PT they poked, they did strain counter strain treatments, they had me do exercises, they pulled on my legs, they tried manipulation and distraction treatments…and the pain continued to get worse.

So, I called my doctor back and explained that the pain is getting worse, and what was originally a slightly grunt provoking discomfort is becoming a 10-15 second ordeal on par with natural childbirth every time I have to change orientation, in which it feels to me like bone is sliding against bone. But still, once whatever is done adjusting in there adjusts, I don’t feel any pain.

Now I get referred to a pain management doctor. He also says it’s sacroiliitis and schedules me for an SI injection of cortisone. That appointment was yesterday. But when I got there and the PM doctor got ready to do the injection, I don’t actually hurt where they thought I hurt. It’s lower. In an area where there really isn’t much that could be sliding around, apparently. The PM doctor jumps to the sciatica conclusion and wants to send me back to PT. I very nearly cried when he said that, and tried again to explain what I’m feeling. I’ve had nerve pain; this is not nerve pain. The doctor seems completely lost until I suggest maybe it’s time to get an MRI. “Oh, that’s a good idea!” he exclaimed. Gee, and I didn’t even have to go through 12 years of college and residency to come up with it. I should make the kind of money he does.

Every one is confused as heck, because the only time it hurts is when I bend over, when I sit down (and sit deeply, like in the car not just perch on the edge of something), and when I stand up. Once I’m sitting and I’ve gritted my teeth through the pain, I can sit comfortably for hours. Once I’ve stood up and gritted my teeth through the pain, I can walk all around Kennedy Space Center with no discomfort….until the next time I have to sit down or bend over, that is. Which is to say, it hurts to put on my shoes and socks and otherwise get dressed. It’s incredibly painful to try to do any housework that involves bending over. I’m planning my day at work around getting the most out of each time I have to get out of my chair, because it hurts to get up and it hurts to sit back down.

So, that’s where I am. I have an MRI scheduled for Thursday and I’m really hoping it will shed some kind of light on what the heck is going on. I’m not looking for drugs to mask the pain. I have some, but they’re really not strong enough to even take the edge off when it hurts, and the trade off of the side effects isn’t worth it. I want to know what’s broken and what can be done to fix it before I go postal on anyone wearing scrubs.

This is also by way of apologizing for not finding more cool things to blog. By the time I get home I’ve used up my resources and I just want to read a bit in a book and go to bed. Which is where I’m headed now.

Train Horns

Created by Train Horns

The website claims that a significant number of people over 25 can’t hear this tone. Well, I now have the headache to prove that I can. But it got me to wondering. I haven’t had a hearing test in … well … Let’s just say since I left public school and leave it at that, shall we?

Anyway, since I was wondering and I have a ‘satiable curiosity, I went looking for a website that talks more about this teenage mosquito tone thing. The one I found was interesting, but really didn’t go into the depth I was looking for. A bit more poking around and I found a site where you can download your very own mosquito ringtones, which has a pretty substantial list of tones in various formats that you can try out. Their recommendation is that you go down the list for the last tone you can hear, as that will make it less likely that the adults around you who don’t want you getting cell phone calls will be able to hear it. I can hear them all, so I guess I still have the ears of a teenager.

Not content there, I wondered if there are full-blown hearing tests online. Glory be, there are. There’s too much background noise at work for me to try it, but I’ll give it a whirl when I get home!

What about you? What’s the last mosquito ringtone YOU can hear?

Yes, apparently there is. The slime mold’s intelligence has been proven.

In their experiment, biophysicist Toshiyuki Nakagaki of Hokkaido University and colleagues manipulated the environment of Physarum slime-mold amoebas (near right). As the cells crawled across an agar plate, the researchers subjected them to cold, dry conditions for the first 10 minutes of every hour. During these cool spells, the cells slowed down their motion. After three cold snaps the scientists stopped changing the temperature and humidity and watched to see whether the amoebas had learned the pattern. Sure enough, many of the cells throttled back right on the hour in anticipation of another bout of cold weather. When conditions stayed stable for a while, the slime-mold amoebas gave up on their hourly braking, but when another single jolt of cold was applied, they resumed the behavior and correctly recalled the 60-minute interval. The amoebas were also able to respond to other intervals, ranging from 30 to 90 minutes.

The jury’s still out on the rest of us, though.

I’ve been sitting here for the last hour, staring at this in horror. Sometimes having a ‘satiable curiosity can be a bit painful. I can’t decide if this is really, really cool or really, really uncool. So I’m taking a poll. Because I haven’t yet played with polls on this blog, please cast your vote in comments. Cool? Or totally uncool?

*Do you see what I did there?

If you needed more evidence that Micro$oft is evil, just have a gander at this. It was made using Micro$soft’$ latest excellent excrement software, Songsmith.

Oh, and by all means, let’s not leave out the White Wedding Ho-Down

When I’m done laughing, I think I’ll be writing a letter of protest. Someone tell me who to send it to.