Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Free Falling

This song came to mind last night as I was sitting in the Emergency Room waiting to see a doctor. It had already been a long day.

I was stepping out of the shower, and even with my wife’s help, when both knees buckled and I collapsed (went straight down – not forward or back). My feet and legs were caught underneath me.
I kept on saying repeatedly, “Please, let nothing be broken.”

I couldn’t stand up, so we had to enlist the help of a neighbor to lift me into my wheelchair. I was sore, but didn’t notice any pain except for my two small left toes. When I tried to stand, however, PAIN! I’ve heard the word ‘crippling pain’ used before, and now I have a better idea what that feels like.

Over the last 30+ years, I broke my tibia, fibula, ankle, and toes several times while living with Kennedy’s Disease. Even the worst pain from these fractures couldn’t hold a candle to this pain. At one point in my attempt, I almost passed out. On the pain chart, I would give it a solid 8, perhaps even a 9. My left leg was worse than the right, but both were bad.

After several attempts, I realized we needed to see a doctor. It was now dinnertime and everything was closed. So, off to the Emergency Room at the hospital. Fortunately, the doctor knew about Kennedy's Disease and this made the visit and diagnosis easier.

  • Diagnosis: Both knees had hyperflexed (Hyperflexion) and the left one was worse. Plus one broken toe and a sprained foot.
  • Treatment: A non-steroidal injection (worked very fast) and some pain pills (Which I haven’t’t taken yet).
  • Prognosis:  2-4 weeks to recover (most likely case). No exercises for several days and then only very light ones where I do not put excess pressure on the knees. Physical therapy might be needed.

Today: Yesterday, I went free falling and today I am cautiously optimistic and more stable. Much less pain (3 or 4 on the scale) and it is manageable.  Broken toes still hurt, however, but you really can’t treat them. I have transferred four times this morning and it is acceptable and manageable.

A special thanks to my wife, neighbors and family for their help, thoughts and prayers. They were needed and still are.

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