Family health report: July 2017

The big story this summer is that the wife had surgery on the three middle toes on July 5. She had hammer toes. She didn’t have to do it now, but eventually, without being corrected, it might impact her mobility as she gets older.

The surgery was very successful. Her response, in terms of limited swelling, et al, was very good, her doctor told her at every followup visit.

One of the things we have both discovered, with my hernia surgery a couple years ago and her recent surgery, is that the cycle of pain is quite fascinating. Right after the surgery, when you get home, you feel really great. The anesthetic has not yet worn off.

Then the pain starts to creep in, and you better start taking that opiod right way, because if you decide to tough it out, it will take longer to get relief. But the prescription lasts only a couple days. It’s less than what you want, and you start taking the over-the-counter stuff, and for longer that you think, hopefully without ruining your liver.

You start to feel better and you inevitably overdo. The Wife is even worse in this regard than I. When she walked too much, and didn’t put her foot up, she is surprised how much it still hurts three or four weeks on.

Meanwhile, I chipped a tooth, for which I’m getting a filling on August 13. More significantly, both in terms of time, pain, and money, I’m getting a crown on September 13.

the Daughter noticed a mark in the whites of my right eye at the end of the month. It was a vertical red line that looks as though someone had drawn it with a Sharpie. The very next day, I went to my ophthalmologist, who said it was a broken blood vessel, and that it would resolve itself. It looked much worse than it felt.

Living on Anbesol and Advil

As mentioned, I had a root canal a couple weeks ago, and the pain was far less than the last one I had some 15 years ago. But then I had to have some work done on another tooth, and the mouth discomfort after that one was mighty steady; not a sharp pain, but a constant ache, for which I was surviving on certain medicines.

And it was not great timing. Last weekend, the daughter didn’t have soccer, but the Wife and I did have a wedding to go to, a co-worker of hers who I didn’t know to a guy I knew just as well. The service was at 2 pm in Niskayuna, in neighboring Schenectady County, and it was lovely. The reception wasn’t until 5 pm, in Altamont, in Albany County, a 30-minute drive, so we did what we needed to do Continue reading

Too close to exploding manhole covers

For about four days, it started hurting when I would eat while using tooth 19. So this past Wednesday morning, I finally called my dentist’s office. Amazingly, I got an appointment that day at 2 p.m. (if not that day, then it would not have until tomoorow). From my symptoms , he believes I need a root canal. The tooth had been capped many years ago, not by him, and it’s a good chance that it has an infection, though nothing ominous is on the X-ray.

He referred me to an endodontist who has done work on his teeth, who can take me in a week. The bad news is that the specialist doesn’t take my insurance, which means that I’ll have an outlay of $1000 to $1500. The semi-good news is that my insurance company will reimburse me about 50% after the fact. Continue reading

The Toothache

There is a great bit by Bill Cosby on the Why Is There Air? album from the mid-1960s called The Toothache. It’s only about 4 minutes long, but it is full of great wisdom. Without having heard it for possibly decades, I remember some great lines such as:
“Here’s the difference between novocaine and pain. Novocaine doesn’t deaden pain. It postpones it. It allows all its pain buddies to get together and say, ‘We’re going to hit that hole at five o’clock.'”
But the best line, and it’s the delivery, not the words:
“And the pain…was tremendous…”

Well, I went to the dentist on Wednesday. Continue reading