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My medical problems, July 2021 edition

Posted Over 1 Year ago by chiarizio

The weakness in my right grip is a compressed medial nerve in my right carpal tunnel. Most likely repetitive stress injury, most likely during sleep.
He wants me to wear a brace to sleep until Sep 16 when he’ll check it again. If it’s improved that confirms the DX.

The right ear deafness is not total after all!
Whatever the problem is it’s a nerve, not the other stuff.
They filled my right ear with some steroid and had me lie on my left for half an hour without moving my head. That was challenging because my ear really itched! They want to do it again at least one more time; Monday the 19th.
Then they want to retest the ear. If it’s better I’ll probably regain my hearing. They say that’s the way to bet but they don’t really know for sure yet.

Anyway it’s not likely these two right-side nerve problems are related.

There are 34 Replies


Hey, good news! I mean, it'd obviously be better if it hadn't happened in the first place, but still!

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

@Axem GW:
Thanks! And you’re right, of course.

What gets me is the timing. I self-quarantined for 16 m.f. months in real fear but nothing happened.
Then right when we can loosen up some all this crap happens?
I mean, logically, it has to be just a coincidence; but emotionally it’s hard not to suspect something!

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Yeah, that's some pretty terrible timing. Hey, at least it wasn't COVID, right?

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

I’ve had the second treatment for my ear. I think it might be improving, but I can’t be sure.
Friday I have a double appointment for both a third treatment and a test to see whether it’s getting any better.
They told me they thought they’d get that all done in 45 minutes. For everything else I hope their optimism is correct, but, I think they must be fooling themselves if they think they can do all that in less than 75 to 90 minutes!

I got the “right cockup” wrist brace. Then the very first night I forgot to wear it to sleep! Next night I remembered the wrist brace but forgot my CPAP machine.
Sometimes I think I need a brain brace!

I’m thinking I’m getting some of those symptoms in my left hand, now. I hope that’s my imagination, or I can make it go away by sleeping more carefully, or something. Maybe I should just buy a left cockup wrist brace out of my own pocket without help from insurance and without a prescription. Or maybe not. I need to talk to someone for advice, I bet.



In the meantime I also need to do things like return library items and renew my driver’s license and get clothes with fewer holes in them and stuff. (Fucking pandemic!).



My Certified Nurse Aide tested positive for the virus so my place looks like a tornado hit it. I hope she’s well. Last I heard she’s symptom-free but I don’t know what that means for her being able to return to work. And I don’t know if she’ll stay symptom-free.
She has family. I don’t know how many of them are vaccinated. Last I heard she wasn’t. If she got at least the first shot she oughtn’t to have to be hospitalized, but I don’t know that she got even that far.

Well, I can worry, but I can’t do anything.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Today I went into the Michigan Ear Institute for my third twice-weekly steroid treatment and also my first between-treatments weekly(?) hearing test.
I have regained 40% hearing in my right ear!
Still, 60% hearing-loss counts as severe hearing-loss.
But such a significant improvement so soon suggests the current treatment track is the right track!
The doctor is now confident I can at least get back to “functional” hearing on time;
and it’s quite likely I can get back to hearing as well as i could before the problem.

After I have “functional” hearing, he’s going to want to actually see what’s going on in my ear.
Specifically he wants to rule out any tumor or what-have-you.
He says 95% to 97% of “these cases” are due to a virus (e.g. a herpesvirus) that attacks only one nerve.
But 3%-5% of the time there’s (something like) a tumor as well or instead.
He says that’s not likely enough for me to worry about it; but he really ought to rule it out fir sure.

I’m glad there are professionals!

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Well, that's good to hear. I don't know how I'd live without the ability to listen to music.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

Thanks, @Axem G.W.!

This morning I realized I can now hear my phone and my alarms ring with just my right ear! Hooray!

(But I still can’t understand even one word on my radio unless I use my left ear. BooHoo!)

….. ….. ….l. ….. ….

Oh BTW; my right hand is already stronger! It’s still a struggle to do certain things, but I can now actually do some of them (albeit with a struggle!) that I couldn’t do before.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Thursday the 29th of July I went to the Ear Institute for my fourth treatment and third hearing test.
My hearing is noticeably improved once again, says the doctor; but he’s disappointed how much less improvement there was from the second test to the third, than from the first test to the second. We talked about how to decide if I’d “plateaued” and what to do if.
But Friday morning I realized I could understand things my iPhone said even if I used only my right ear!
And Friday afternoon it was even better!
If he knew that I don’t think he’d be disappointed.
I go in for a fifth treatment and fourth test this coming Monday the 2nd of Aug.

….. ….. ….. …..

My right wrist still scares me sometimes that I’m going to drop something.
It is much improved from when all this crap started, but still a long way to go to get back to normal.
I still don’t know whether or how much to worry about some similar symptoms showing up in the left hand.
I’m hoping that if I’m just careful how I sleep I can avoid the problem happening on the left.

I have an appointment with my primary doctor Monday; I’ll talk to her about it then.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

My CNA got tested but she hasn’t heard the results yet.
But at least she felt well enough to get tested!

Over 1 Year ago
eldin raigmore
 

In about 90 more minutes I’ll go to the ear clinic again.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

I had another treatment but not another test.
I’ll be treated and tested on Thursday August 5.
At 7:45 in the morning in another town!
That means I have to get up by 5:45! I’m not looking forward to it.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Yeah, I know that feeling. I've signed up for a handful of classes, but they're two hours away and they start at 8 in the morning, so I've had to get up at 5 AM for the last two Fridays, and I've got two classes left.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

Just finished my test and treatment.
My detection of sounds is greatly improved, and getting better fast.
But my speech comprehension is only 16%.
It’s improving too, but very slowly.

….

OTOH my right hand seems to be nearly back to normal.

….

I’m waiting for my first professional haircut in many years.
Then I’m going to buy new underpants and undershirts and maybe some Bermuda shorts and short-sleeved shirts.
I hope I have enough credit on my card to pay for it.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

I just found out my Certified Nurse-Aide who does “in-home senior care” for me 3 hours a week,
has tested clear of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, and plans to return to work next week!

Hooray!

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Hey, congrats, man. Both on the ear/hand issues starting to heal and getting your aide back.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

@AGW:
How’d your classes go?

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Slept through my damned alarm, so I had to reschedule for next month. Took me too long to fall asleep, because I was too busy worrying about falling asleep so I could get enough sleep.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

I learned from one of my doctors that adult humans don’t actually need “sleep per se”.
What we need is rest — both physical and mental.
If you lie comfortable and relaxed and almost motionless, in the darkness and silence, for a few hours, letting your mind drift, you’ll get the rest you need — he said.

(He also said you’re likely to spend some of that time asleep. He said patients often think they didn’t sleep at all but they did sleep some.)

Anyway; worrying about falling asleep, and trying to fall to sleep, probably don’t help.
Just take a break from trying anything for a few hours, he said.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

I learned from one of my doctors that adult humans don’t actually need “sleep per se”.

No way in hell that's true. You either misheard him, are misremembering his words, misunderstood him, or he's a quack. If we didn't need sleep, we wouldn't spend a third of our lives doing it.
Anyway; worrying about falling asleep, and trying to fall to sleep, probably don’t help.

Just take a break from trying anything for a few hours, he said.

Yeah. The issue is that I get off work at 9 PM, and have to get up at 5 AM to get ready. If I go to bed at 10-11, that's 6-7 hours of sleep. No way I'd try driving two hours (and then ANOTHER two hours, after eight hours of classes) on only 3-4.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

TWO HOURS?!??!!???!!!
Your distances need to be halved!

…..

I might also say your 15-hour workday is crying out for a siesta to be inserted in your schedule somewhere. At least 90 minutes, if not 3 hours.
Any chance of that?

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

TWO HOURS?!??!!???!!!

I agree completely. Unfortunately, I doubt the teacher will be willing to move, to make things easier for me.
I might also say your 15-hour workday is crying out for a siesta to be inserted in your schedule somewhere. At least 90 minutes, if not 3 hours.

Thankfully not. I work second shift, so I go in at 2 PM. Only 7 hours on Wednesday and Thursday, 10 hours on Friday, and 12 on Saturday.

Plus, I'm a security guard, so I spend 80% of my shift just sitting in a desk chair, reading.

EDIT: When I said I have to get up at 5 AM to get ready, I meant for the classes. They start at 8 AM, so I spend an hour getting ready, and then two hours driving. Other days I get up at noon. Thankfully I've only got two days of them left.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

@AGW:
Whew! That’ll be a relief!

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

Yeah, no kidding. If I had to regularly work 15 hours, I'd just quit and get a fast food job. No way I'd be able to keep it up long-term.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

I’m thinking my ear may have “plateaued”.
I can quite often understand a lot through my right ear now, but too often it’s just not loud enough for me to get it all in time unless I can also use the left ear.
I may have to look into a hearing aid.
Of course I really shouldn’t be worrying about it until my appointment Friday the 20th of Aug!
….
My wrist is just about back to normal, as far as I can tell.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

My ear doctor has quit treating my failing right ear.
The test I took yesterday showed no change, (neither improvement nor deterioration).
He said their tests don’t cover everything, so if I had noticed improvement he’d have continued with the treatment.
But since neither his audiologist nor I had noticed any improvement he thinks further treatment won’t make a difference.

However, he says, he expects my hearing in that ear will in fact improve noticeably over the next four to six weeks.
He says in cases such as mine that typically does occur; some recovery even without treatment.
He can’t guess how much it will recover, but he expects it will some.
He wants to talk to me and test me again in six weeks (Fri Oct 1, 10:00 am) and decide then what to do next.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

I am rapidly getting slower and creakier and I don’t know why.
Even strangers are starting to notice.
Of course this is to be expected with age; but have I suddenly started to age faster?
My first impulse is to blame the pandemic.

It’s not a medical problem yet, as far as I know. I just felt like posting about it here.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 



Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

How much exercise do you get? What's your diet like? Might be something related to that.

Over 1 Year ago
Axem Great Water

Since the pandemic, much less exercise and much less healthy a diet.
That’s what I meant when I said my first thought was to blame it on the pandemic.

Over 1 Year ago
chiarizio
 

My wrist is back to normal. I’m supposed to keep sleeping in the wrist-brace.
My right ear’s hearing has improved noticeably but minimally. If anything happens to my left ear I’ll be significantly handicapped.
I’m seeing the ear doc this Friday. I predict he’ll recommend a hearing aid; but I probably shouldn’t rely on my untrained guesswork.

11 Months ago
chiarizio
 

My wrist is back to normal. I’m supposed to keep sleeping in the wrist-brace.


I’m glad it’s back to normal. What was the issue with it, again?

Sorry about your hearing. Keep us posted!

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

11 Months ago
Weird Occurance

I’m glad it’s back to normal. What was the issue with it, again?

The medial nerve running through the carpal tunnel was compressed. They figured I was sleeping on it wrong. I got a wrist brace that kept it from moving either palmward or the opposite way and was told to always wear it to sleep and never wear it to drive. If that cured the problem, they said, that would prove their diagnosis was correct. It did, so they said “yay us! we were right!”

11 Months ago
chiarizio
 

If that cured the problem, they said, that would prove their diagnosis was correct. It did, so they said “yay us! we were right!”


Sounds about right haha

At any rate, I'm glad they were able to figure it out - and that it's better!

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

11 Months ago
Weird Occurance

Some weeks ago I fell. It was either this month or last. I started worrying about it.
I have an appointment with my Primary Care Physician the middle of January. I will have a lot of questions to ask.
A lot of the problems I was worried about seem not quite as bad now as they did when I started worrying.
I still think I should ask.
History shows that sometimes the problem is something else than what I think the problem is; and she knows how to treat it.

8 Months ago
chiarizio
 

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