13 August 2009

Home again...

Well I'm finally home again after a very long and exhausting 7 days in Sydney. I was originally only supposed to be in Sydney for 4 days in order to see the neurologist for a check up on the back surgery I had last July. I am having some on going symptoms associated with the surgery. I had a new MRI of my entire spine and in addition I had a Nerve Conduction Test (NCT) run on my hands because I have developed some symptoms in my hands, which would not have been associated with the lower back surgery. So, it was a totally new problem..

As I said the MRI was to follow up on my surgery sight and the NCT was investigating the symptoms in my hands, which included numbness and pain in both hands. I can not hold anything for longer than a minute without my fingers and eventually my entire hand going numb. My neurologist suspected that I might have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) and the NCT confirmed his suspicions. I have (CTS) not only in one hand but both. We also discovered that I am developing peripheral neuropathy in both hands. The neuropathy is the same as the neuropathy I currently have in my feet.

The (CTS) can be fixed through surgery. I will have two separate surgeries so I will be able to use one hand while the other hand is recuperating from the surgery. I don't know when the surgeries will happen but the doctor is working on scheduling the surgeries. As soon as they have a date I'll be off to fix my hands. Unfortunately, the neuropathy can not be fixed and I can only hope that it does not get any worse and get as bad as it is in my feet.

The MRI found a suspicious spot near the area involved with my back surgeries (remember I ended up having 4 of them). The doctor then ordered a series of blood tests and a set of nuclear scans of my entire body which not only looked at the suspicious spot but also my bones. The doctor was trying to determine if the spot he saw was scar tissue or instead a collection of fluid which could be a site of chronic infection. If the site was a chronic infection I was looking at ongoing intravenous antibiotics that would be administered on a regular basis in order to keep the infection in check so it would not spread into my system. The results ended up being just scar tissue and not an infection. I was extremely relieved. The scar tissue will be something I will always have to deal with and it will unfortunately continue to give me some pain for the rest of my life. This is not uncommon once any type of back surgery is performed. I can and as I said will have to live with that.

All in all it was a mixed bag of results but overall I think we ended up with mostly good results. I'm not looking forward to the surgeries on my hands but at least they will help my hand get back to some sense of normal. I'll keep everyone abreast of all the latest developments and once again I want to thank all of you that have continued to send me such wonderful notes of encouragement.

One more thing, I don't have to worry about looking for a job until my hands are fixed so in some ways that's one worry off my chest. I hope by the time my hands are fixed the job market will look brighter. OK, that's all for now and thanks for reading this very long post. I'll write again soon and also make sure I do next months 12 of 12. I hated missing it but I did not have my camera with me in Sydney. See you soon. Take care...


Larry Ohio said...

I'm very relieved for you that you ended up with mostly good results. Getting that stress of possible doom off you will no doubt help you more than you think. Hang in there.

Bigg said...

What can I say? No miracle cure, but at least a bit of good news. I'm pulling for you and sending good thoughts your way - it just takes 'em longer to get there because they have to cross the equator.

Ur-spo said...

Thank you for keeping us abreast of the news. I hope this works out as well as he can.

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