May 19th, 2008


Info, then questions

I saw Dr. Buddy Friday. The people in London who make the braces still have not called him and he can't get his software to accept my 3 curves so he wanted to get some more measurements and see if he could get the computer to take my data on his own.

As I've said, the curves are not bad, it's just that there are 3 of them. I was having a pretty good pain day, I've been on the edge of a flare for weeks without really tipping one way or the other, but you can feel a squishy spot on the right where I have the most pain and that is *about* where the apex of one curve is.

Dr. Buddy spent a lot of time checking where things are out of alignment, having my touch my toes and running a level up my spine, hanging one of those pendulum/plumb things off my ass and telling me how very, very sorry he is that I'm having to go through this and that the fix is not coming quickly.

At one point he thought he could get things to speed along by ignoring the middle curve, the point where things straighten out and start to pull to the right before taking a second and more severe jog to the left to fuck up that shoulder. When he input things measuring me with just one very big curve the computer did take them, but it spit back all the things that should be going wrong with my hips/pelvis and where the brace should fix that (My pelvic base is actually even). Then Dr. Buddy realized he needed to put in the places where my disc are rotated and how severe that is. That was another 20 min or so looking at x-rays, telling me how sorry he is, how my x-rays just *look* painful, and ultimately the realization that listing me with one curve and ignoring the curve and rotation in the middle will probably just cause more problems.

Then we spent a while with him bending and shifting me to see which way a brace for 3 curves should shift me. We discovered I actually got more compression trying to pull me to the left (I complained that everything felt really squished and it made my left side ache) and that there is no hope of lowering my left shoulder, we'll have to work on pull the right one up to ease things there. This was the point when we may have had a break-through.

Apparently someone discovered that if you take the spine and move it, all of the discs align according to that movement. Therefore, if you take someone with a lot of disc rotation and just haul back on their shoulders with a brace and keep the lower spine from compensating by sticking the tummy out, all the vertebrae will unkink. There is a guy in New York bracing adults based on that theory and Dr. Buddy was going to give him a call the moment I walked out of the office. He's love it if I could go see this guy but:
a) not practical and
b) not happening since this guys is rather...aggressive financially. He won't bill insurance companies, so people leave with shiny new braces and HUGE bills.

I also talked to Dr. Buddy about taking over all of my prescriptions. He'd prefer to see me off of all of them and encouraged my to talk to the Dear Dithering Osteopath about it. I had to explain that I was a little leery of that, since the DDO is such great friends with the Spine Doc but apparently the DDO isn't too happy with the mega-spine complex where the Spine Doc works right now and it shouldn't be as awkward as I thought.

Saturday I did something fairly dumb. Everyone, from friends and family to Dr. Buddy, keeps asking me if the TENS is really making that much difference in my pain levels. Dr. Buddy was asking what happened if I didn't wear it for a day or if I didn't wear it for a couple days. I'm not really sure, since I think I've worn it at least a little bit every single day since I got it. So....yeah.


My experiment was flawed, though. I missed my day-time anti-spazz pill and my afternoon Lyrica on Saturday as well, but Sunday I couldn't turn my head to the left comfortably, couldn't raise my left arm or reach forward without pain and my neck was popping every time I looked up, down or to the right. I woke up in pain this morning and that hasn't happened for a while. I'm going to break out that therapy unit soon, I'm telling you.