Tuesday, June 24, 2008


The MRIs I had originally scheduled on Friday of last week were postponed until yesterday. Apparently the machine I was supposed to be in would have messed with the stents (could have potentially moved them magnetically) so they had to put me in a different one. So it all went down yesterday instead.

I had two of them done, one to look at my brain and the other to look at the blood vessels in my neck. They wanted to check any kind of vessel narrowing and/or aneurysms that might be present. The whole procedure involved being inside the machine pictured below for 45 minutes to an hour. That looks like the exact model I was in, complete with the basket looking thing around my head to lock it in place. I'm very glad that I'm not claustrophobic because that little tube they slide you in is extremely cozy. I had a slight reaction to the contrast material they used (slight nausea and come chest tightness) but otherwise the procedure wasn't too bad.

I should hear from the doc in a day or two with the results. Hopefully it won't be too bad.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Doc Visit

Went to the doctor last week for a quick check-up. I was hoping to get some good stuff to take for the gout attack I’ve had for a week now, and wanted to talk to them about a few other things that have been happening. They gave me colchicine for the gout, which seems to have helped. I think it’s probably the most potent (legal) drug I’ve ever taken. The dosage instructions from the doc were: “Take 1 tablet every 1-2 hours until pain subsides or you get sick”. Colchicine not only helps alleviate gout but it’s also a pretty strong poison, so once you start showing signs of being ill (vomiting, nausea, the runs, etc.) you’d better stop taking it. The digoxin I took as a kid had some pretty dire effects if you took too much, but I think the colchicine is the first thing I’ve had with “death” in the list of possible overdose effects. It may have helped with the pain, but I think beaching myself on the couch and elevating the foot for 2 days helped out a bit too.

The other stuff I talked to them about had them a bit more worried though. I’ve been having more migraines lately, and they’ve started coming in clusters. I’ve typically had them one at a time and then they go away for a month or so. Lately though, they come back several days in a row. Also, I’ve had some numbness in my fingers first thing in the mornings and my left arm has been giving me some problems too. The fingers are a mystery to me, but the left arm isn’t. I’ve known since I was a kid that the main artery in my left arm is almost completely blocked (occluded, as the docs say). When I was younger, if I used the arm for 10-15mins it would start to weaken and get tired from the reduced blood flow. Over time my body adjusted though (increased capillary flow, higher blood pressure to carry blood through the occlusion, etc) and I haven’t had many problems with it in several years. Until recently.

The answer to all of it so far is, of course, more tests. I go in Friday afternoon for a series of MRIs on my brain, neck, and possibly my left arm. They want to check the blood flow and make sure there’s not some nasty occlusion or aneurysm lurking around in there somewhere causing everything. Should be a fun week.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


In the midst of a gout attack this morning and I'm taking the day off. This is the first real attack I've had in a while; the previous couple that I've had didn't involve a lot of pain and my foot didn't swell much. This one's excruciating and my left foot's swollen so much that I can't put a shoe on. Yesterday wasn't so bad, but it flared up big time last night and is bad this morning.

Anyway, I have the day off and finally updated some stuff. I went to my parents' house this past weekend for our Birthday Celebration. 5 of us all had birthdays in the last month (and 2 wedding anniversaries) so we got the family together and celebrated everything. Posted a few pics over on Flickr, but not many came out well. My camera's never taken good indoor photos, and lately they seem to be getting worse. Guess it's time for a new camera.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Entertain Me

I went to see The Strangers last night with a friend. Definitely not the best horror flick I've ever seen, but it was a fun movie to watch nonetheless. I knew going in that it wasn't going to be a heart-pounding kind of scary (for me anyway), but I went hoping the audience would at least be jumpy and entertain me. I wasn't disappointed...the theater was full of teenage girls so there was lots of screaming at all the scripted times (whenever there was a loud noise, when someone appeared in the background, etc.). The two girls directly in front of us were some of the worst screamers. They were annoyed at those of us who were laughing, but kept on screaming when cued. All in all a fun trip to the theater, but only because of the audience and not because of the movie.

I got back early in the evening and decided to begin watching what I predict to be my next addiction: Battlestar Galactica. You'd think that I'd have been all over this series from the second it aired, but for a host of unrelated reasons and bad timing I never was able to catch the beginning. It's been in my NetFlix line-up for a while but I hadn't got around to starting it until recently (was busy watching Deadwood, Weeds, Rescue Me, Queer as Folk, etc.). I made it through the mini-series last night am definitely hooked. I'll get started on the regular series today, and with my impressively sad TV watching ability, will probably be through all the shows in a few weeks. Hopefully I'll enjoy it as much as I think I will.