Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Follow Up To My Swollen Elbow, 07/20/10

Hello Folks,

I went to the orthopedic surgeon today because of my swollen elbow. I arrived at 9:35 a.m. for a 9:40 a.m. appointment. I waited until 10:10 a.m. to see the doctor. I get so anxious sitting there waiting for the doc to arrive. I guess it's that I'm always expecting the worst case scenario. In this case, it would have been getting another steroid shot into my elbow joint... OUCH!

But after our discussion regarding my elbow and the past treatments he has done to correct the problem, we agreed that maybe I should have a MRI done to make sure that no further damage has occurred since my surgery back in June of 2009.

In a sense, I felt relieved that I wasn't going to go through with another injection. However, I know that the steroid shots always tend to help in a week's time even if for only a short period.

He explained to me that anyone with the extent of arthritis that I have may have ongoing problems with fluid buildup. This swelling appears almost like tendinitis or tennis elbow. I feel that it's more serious than that because it swells at the point where he cut some loose tendon away from my elbow joint. I'm hoping that there isn't further tearing going on in this sensitive area.

The doctor asked if I take anything for the pain and I explained to him that due to my liver disease, I stay as far away from anti-inflammatory medications as possible. Such medications break down in the liver and places even more stress on an organ that is already under stress due to the disease.

We also talked about how the steroid makes my blood sugars go up. Since I've been on Lantus (long acting insulin), my blood sugars have been all over the place. My PCP wants my sugars at or below 150. Well, that hasn't been the case and adding a steroid into the mix only worsen things.

I had an AC1 blood test done two weeks ago and I'm waiting for the results. Anything over a reading of an "8" is not good. My last test was slightly above the "8" reading.

So, my MRI appointment is next Tuesday, July 27, at 7:30 a.m. I then have a follow up meeting with the surgeon on August 3, 2010, to determine the next course of action, if any.