Elbows & Blisters

Did you know that elbows could swell?  Well, now you do.

So much for hoping that I was just having a holiday flare that would disappear after Christmas.  I’ve been taking maximum doses of tylenol on top of my feldene & other meds, but it doesn’t seem to be helping.  Pills are limited to breakfast, lunch, dinner, bedtime – keeps me from forgetting when the last dose was and consequently taking too much.

If there’s a bright side to this, it would be the fact that I have an appointment next week.  With any luck, my insurance company will approve the new medication in a timely fashion, and whichever drug I get will yield quick results.

In the meantime, I’ve been using my trusty rice bag as a hotpad – rotating between elbows and shoulders.  If anyone has other relief tips to tide me over until I see the doctor next week, I would be most appreciative.

In other news, I have a couple blisters on my hand — and although I’ve been cooking a lot recently (pies, candy, etc.), I don’t recall burning myself.  You’d think I’d remember burns that are bad enough to leave blisters, but I have no idea how I got them.  On the bright side, they don’t hurt unless I press on them.  Makes me wonder if the PN is getting worse.

2009 is almost over!!



Apples, Pumpkins, Beets, Neuropathy

“What,” you might be asking, “do apples, pumpkins, beets, and neuropathy have in common?”

The answer is:  my week.

Apples:  A friend learned that I know how to make applesauce and donated the apples from his two trees.  Fortunately, they’re small trees!  It’s incredibly easy – I didn’t realize there were people who can’t make applesauce.

Garden Produce:  I’m also canning pumpkin and beets this week.  Just a few short rows in the garden yielded five gallons of beets.  I don’t even have a count on the pumpkins.  About ten ripened.  My kids cut up two of them while I finished the apples and they’re cooking now.

Neuropathy:  My feet have felt better this summer, but for the past week they’ve been all tingley again.  Apparently they were getting lonely; they’ve invited my hands and arms to the party.  As I contemplated whether or not it’s bugging me enough to warrant yet another doctor’s appointment, I thought of  the post two weeks ago at Pens and Needles.  Then this morning I found a link to The Many Ills of Peripheral Nerve Damage, and decided, “yes” I’m less likely to seek additional treatment, and  “no,” this doesn’t bother me enough to endure more testing and maybe have to take yet another prescription.

Other:  In other current events, the father of a kid I worked with a couple years ago gets released tomorrow.  I wouldn’t be quite so nervous about this if his (ex) family hadn’t spent the past month packing all their belongings.  Is it a coincidence that they are moving out-of-state the day before his incarceration ends?  Is the stress in any way related to what’s going on with my feet/hands?

Well, back to pumpkins.  Clean, peel, chop, cook, can…  pumpkin custard for supper!


PN’s Silver Lining

Every dark cloud has a silver lining.

It’s there, but we won’t see it if we don’t look.

Even nerve damage has advantages.  For instance:

  • I’m able to pick up extremely hot items
  • Painless procedures

I consider it an advantage that I don’t have to always use potholders.  Sometimes I can carry hot items in my bare hands, even when everyone else in my house needs potholders to handle those same things.  It’s made for some interesting times passing dishes around the dinner table!

Sometimes it’s also an advantage to be unable to feel painful procedures.  Once I had a wart chemically frozen/burned off my toe.  The nurse kept apologizing, saying that she knew it hurt and she was trying to be gentle.  I finally got through to her that – really, it didn’t hurt.  I couldn’t feel it at all.  Which, in hind-sight, perhaps should have been addressed as signficant instead of peculiar.

So, although peripheral neuropathy can at times produce a highly unpleasant sensation in my extremities, I’ll continue searching for the bright side. There always is one.