Thursday, November 23, 2017


I think you already know I stopped blogging as we never go anywhere or do anything of interest to others.  I was thinking about this the other day and realised although we always spend time with family on birthdays, at Christmas, Easter on M/Day and F/Day and this year for our 50th W/aniversary nearly all our other outings are connected in some way with the medical fraternity.

This has been a very medical year for me including eyes, ears, teeth, skin, joints etc etc.  I know one's health is of little interest to anyone other than whose health it is but just to give you an idea of how it dominates one's life in old age.  I am going to relate to you some of what has been happening this year.  You don't have to read it but it will help me to cope with all that has been happening to me.

Skin:  We see our dermatologist annually and he often zaps little spots he doesn't like the look of. This year, just to be different, I had two little skin cancers removed.  The one just in front of my left ear was a basal cell carcinoma and they are usually pretty harmless but the one on the outside of my left foot was a squamous cell carcinoma and they can turn nasty if not treated in time.  Fortunately our wonderful Jonathon got it all (the margins were clear as they put it).

Eyes:  Saw the eye specialist who said my eyes are in pretty good condition and he will see me in a couple of years.  Told me to bathe them with carb soda mixed with water (I must begin to do that one day) and also told me to get a foamy thing which I have to rub over my eyelids.  Quite a palaver so I'm not doing that as often as I should.

Ears:  I've always had problems with my left ear (hearing and have had infections of middle ear over the years) but my right ear was always good.  Had noticed of late when in a crowd (with family) I miss much of what is being said.  Off I trotted to the Lions Hearing Institute to be fitted with hearing aids.  I'd tried some years ago, put them to one side and that was that.  This time I thought I will really try to use them but I hate the sound of me breathing or chewing or swallowing although they say one's brain gets used to it.  The audiologist told me my ears were full of wax so when I saw Dr Ken on Monday I asked him to check.  He said my left ear was perfectly clear but my right ear was full of wax.   Put 10 of these drops in your ear each night, plug ear with cotton wool and come and see me on Thursday.  Last 10 drops last night and I feel the doctor is going to have to wash out my ear as no sign of wax coming out.  The cost of the aids are completely covered by private health insurance so maybe I'll decide to keep them and persevere.

Teeth:  I know to some of you this will sound dreadful but I lost my bottom plate months or perhaps years ago.  I don't show my bottom teeth when I smile or talk so wasn't all that worried and I did still have on bottom canine tooth left (although not much of it).  Decided to go back to the dental clinic and saw the dentist I'd seen a couple of years ago.  He virtually built me a new tooth (they won't take them out these days if they can avoid doing so).  Took him about 30 mins or more but after 3 months it is still solid.  I'd found a bottom plate I forgot I had so showed it to him and he said they could make alterations and it should do me fine.  Had to add a tooth as when it was made I actually had to canine bottom teeth.  Tooth added with clip to go around 'new' tooth but I found it hurt when I ate on that side or even when wearing the plate for any length of time.  Went back and saw a Chinese lady dentist who sent me for an x-ray of my bottom jaw.  She rang me and said it was fine and cancelled appt as she felt I should be OK.  Wrong!!!  I am going back on 7th December and this time will see the young gentleman I'd been dealing with before.  Hopefully he will find the problem and solve it for me.  Teeth are a nuisance when they are arriving and continue to be throughout one's life altho' Phil is fortunate to have nearly all his own teeth still.

Joints:  For months now my left ring finger has been swollen and painful and I am unable to bend it.  Last February Dr Ken gave me a referral to SKG to have an injection in PIP joint of that finger.  I had that injection yesterday!!!  Told not to use finger much for two days do am now typing with right hand and index finger of left hand.    Not holding out a lot of hop but these injections can take days or even weeks to have an affect so who knows.  This shows how swollen the finger was yesterday and looking at it right now I think the swelling may have gone down a tiny bit.  The plaster has of course been removed.

All other joints including lower back:  My back had got so bad I was unable to stand for more than 5 minutes and walking without my walker was getting impossible.  I'd talked previously to Dr Ken about pain killers, having found paracetamol useless, but he, and I agreed with him, was very reluctant to prescribe anything.  On Monday he took pity on me and prescribed morphine patches (very low dose he assured me) and Phil carefully applied one to my left upper arm last night.  You have to do it once a week at exactly the same time so next Tuesday at 7pm we replace it.  He only gave me two so I guess I will be back to see him in about 10 days.  He said they can take up to 3 days to take effect but I doubt on Saturday I'll be running around the block.  Just to be able to stand and make a few sandwiches without having to sit down will be wonderful so here's hoping.

Feet:  On Friday Phil and I visit our podiatrist and we always enjoy our 7 weekly visits as John is a great fellow to chat to and the hour flies by.   Our feet always feel pampered after our visit to John and I'm trying to get Phil to massage cream into my feet the way John does but Phil doesn't want to know.  Don't get me wrong Phil will rub cream into my feet when I ask him but he just doesn't have the same technique.  I guess practise makes perfect.

If you actually got this far I am surprised and you will realise that compared with some poor folk who suffer nasty diseases I am fortunate in that the above are minor things but they can take up so much of one's life ;cos on top of that we have both have to inject each day with insulin for our diabetes and of course take a multitude of pills.  I often wonder we don't both rattle!!!

It did me good to write this down as it has made me realise I don't have all that much to complain about.  Phil and I still have each other and out little family helps make life good.


  1. Hari OM
    Lovely to see a full post from you Mimsie, and I agree that writing things down truly helps perspective and to clarify our thinking. Each thing may be 'minor' but the accumulation is wearying to our being. That swollen finger looks problematic! Not for the timid, this aging process. Blessings to you and Phil. YAM xx

    1. Thanks Yamini for being understanding.
      I re-read this epistle and now realise why there are times I feel rather weary. In fact, we both do as Phil is now my chauffeur and waiting for people can be tiring.

  2. Of course I read it all - and my heart goes out to you. All those small things add up.
    I am so glad that you have Phil. Hugs to you both. Gentle ones.

    1. Thanks E.C. I knew you'd understand.
      Phil also seems pleased he has me, for some reason, even though I am the one with the most problems. He is quite good natured about it all although I know it worries him.

  3. Health problems stink,especially when they affect your day to day activities. I hope your back and finger feel better.
    I hope you have a peaceful weekend

    1. Thank so much for your good wishes.
      So far our weekend has been very peaceful although rather warm.
      Seems the patch is working as far as pain is concerned but now I realise there may be other problems with my back.
      I think the finger has gone down a little but those injections can always take time to work.

  4. I read all the way too and I don't like the look of that finger at all. Do you know why it got so swollen? I've been saying for years I should get a thorough mole check done, but the ones I can see never change at all, so I keep putting it off.
    I think with your teeth, you may need to get a complete new plate made, I've heard from others that relines or realignments don't really work.
    I agree with you that paracetamol is useless. Oddly enough, a news article recently highlighted the fact that codeine doesn't really work and people are better off trying just panadol or ibuprofen. Now if that's the case why are codeine containing pills getting restricted to prescription only by next year? Even now one needs ID to purchase any over the counter. I use them for migraine and they DO work.
    Their main concern is people becoming addicted to them and taking far more than necessary, their backward thinking must be that people take so many because one or two don't work, which is only true if you become habituated.
    I'd love to have my feet pampered on a regular basis.

  5. My hands have different types of arthritis and it is that which is causing the swelling and pain in the PIP joint. I can type with it now and it doesn't feel too bad.
    I will see what the dentist says when I see him on 7th Dec. He's very good and I will take heed of his advice.
    Codeine can become addictive and Karen and I are both allergic to it anyway. With the patches one isn't likely to become addicted as one could with tablets etc.
    I used to take Veganin for migraine headaches but I only ever had 3 in my whole like and I don't think you can buy Veganin now and not sure what it actually was.
    My back is less painful but I am finding it seems rather rigid so more to the problem than first thought perhaps. Will give it a week or two before I go back and ask for an investigation. Possibly a couple of vertebrae have fused in my lower back as they have in my neck.
    Life wasn't meant to be easy so I am told but I am still glad to be here to enjoy it regardless.
    My feet felt so good after seeing John. It's not what you'd call a pedicure which I think are perhaps more fancy with nail polish and the life. John cuts and buffs nails etc and then massages the feet with cream.

    1. hari OM
      Veganin is still available Mimsie (at least here in UK) and it is paracetamol/codeine tablet mixed with caffiene to counteract the drowsy effects. The problem with codeine is that the body quickly adapts to it so more than casual use results in resistance and therefore ever increasing doses required for effect... hence the road to addictions. I can't take most drugs, which is why I became a homeopathic physician instead!!! Ibuprofen is the best of the current orthodox pain managements I find - but not everyone can take that either. hey ho.... Sending love from the frozen North &*> Yxx

  6. Your poor swollen finger, I hope it heals quickly. I got a prescription anti-inflammatory salve for joint aches but haven't tried it yet; it is easier on the stomach since it is a salve. Best wishes for healing for you.