9 December 2018

Kyphoscoliosis, sciatica, and meralgia paresthetica

The physical therapist modified my back exercises. (A copy of my guide sheet is enclosed.) I'm beginning to have doubts about the one where I lift a knee across the other leg; he said the back-arch one was bad for me, but didn't mention what I call the "knee cross" one way or the other.

For years, I've been sporadically doing "pushuplets" for my arm bones. Now I do them before getting off the floor after back exercises, and continue to do them at the church, after I climb stairs slowly to strengthen my quads.

Dr. Rahn sent me to Dr. Bojrab for three shots in the spine, and also put me on Gabapentin at bed time.

My last bad day was the day after the last shot. There have been occasions when I got up for an hour, but I slept well when I went back to bed.

That last shot was on September 26, which means that I can't have more steroids until January 26. I'm wondering whether it would be a good idea to take a six-day treatment early in February, in the hope that it won't get so bad again.

Now and again I've had pain in the right leg. Symptoms have been consistent with over-use, cramped non-use, and lying on it to spare the other leg, but it's unsettling.

It's hard to be sure, but I think the Gabapentin has been helping me sleep. Does Gabapentin improve damaged nerves, or merely cover up the pain?


I had my cataracts out in September. I think I should have waited a few more years.

Peripheral Neuropathy

I've pretty much learned to ignore it. Sometimes the ends of the small toes on my right foot seem a bit sensitive when they brush against the bedsheet, which is new.

On the spring hike, I learned that wearing shoes aggravates it -- I got the "wrinkled sock" sensation on the way back, and felt the neuropathy the rest of the day.

On the fall hike, I got "wrinkled socks" as soon as I put my shoes on, but went back to not noticing as soon as I took them off.


I haven't heard from my corns since I gave up wearing shoes, but there's a little lump of callus on each foot where they used to be.

Thick toenail

One of my toenails has gotten thick like Dave's toenails. I've been putting a speck of Dave's urea cream on it whenever I wear socks, and that has improved it enough that I can scrub the black off when I've been in the garden.

Bug bite on back

I've got a bug bite on my back, a bit to the right of the spine and an inch or two below the waist. It seems as though I always have a bug bite in that spot, but in that location, it's hard to be sure.



I walk to church nearly every Sunday, half a mile each way. If I remember, I'll climb to the second floor and do twelve pushuplets.

I aspire to one quarter-century (25-mile) bike ride per week. In the winter this is restricted by slick roads; in the summer, I have a severe shortage of places to go. I often have something else I have to do when the weather is good.

Meralgia paresthetica with arthritic changes

I'm pretty much aware of it all the time, but often only when I pay attention, and usually it's only a vague awareness that the hip isn't right. I've begun to notice it when walking, particularly on the second half of the trip back from church. (The church is about half a mile from our house.)

I coughed from Christmas through January. During that time, it hurt to roll over in bed. That has mostly cleared up.

I try to ration standing-still time, and don't often stand long enough to touch it off. It is frequently impossible to avoid standing in line; I fidget as much as I can.

Neuropathy in feet

I no longer notice it: no "wrinkled socks", no "something stuck to my foot". I think that it's my brain learning to deal with it rather than improvement, but at least it isn't getting worse.

Little Blisters

When I was a teenager, I got severe itching of the palms with little blisters under the skin. While Mom and I were walking from the car to the doctor's door, the symptoms disappeared. The doctor said it was neurodermatitis brought on by stress. I ignored all subsequent incidents and they went away. The August before last they didn't stay on the palms, climbed up onto my fingers, and came to the surface and broke open. This was still going on when I saw you in (February?) and you said to try cortizone and show it to Darr if that didn't work. The blisters went away in a couple of weeks and haven't been back.

I looked up "neurodermatitis" and little blisters aren't it. The description does fit what I get on my shins, where the bone is just under the skin. If I rub it with a wet rag as soon as I feel the urge to scratch, it isn't any trouble. Happens mostly when I have been wearing tights -- but not, thank goodness, *while* I am wearing tights.

Pain in good leg

On the evening of 31 March 2018 my right leg hurt so badly that I couldn't concetrate to write or edit.

Symptoms were consistent with over-use, and I had increased my bicycle miles on the previous day, but I'm very careful to avoid favoring my left leg.  Mounting and dismounting is inherently assymetrical, but I didn't do any more of that than on my previous ride.

I had noticed smaller pains in that leg on previous occasions.

I took aspirin that evening and Sunday afternoon.