Rotator cuff tendonitis. Catchy name, isn't it? After living in pain for a month and being misdiagnosed by several expensive professionals, turns out this is my latest thrill. It feels remotely like your entire neck and shoulder ssat upon by a hippo while your arm was stuck in a freezer full of cacti. Well, okay, maybe I'm a bit of a baby when it comes to painful ailments, but this bitch has been getting worse every day. It's a little spooky waking up with a totally numb, ice-cold right arm and shooting pains in the shoulder socket and surrounding neighborhoods. Everything becomes difficult: typing, driving, drinking. Forget about masturbation. Useful doctors seem to be getting harder and harder to find these days. The first doc leered at me like the only reason I was even there was for narcotic painkillers or something (it was). He suggested it was just a wee neck spasm and told me to put ice on it, sending me off with a prescprition for Flexaril and a hit of rancid coffee breath. I'd heard some great stories about Flexaril, but sadly none of them rang true for me. They just spaced me out, not even in a fun way, and made me feel creaky like the tin man. Meanwhile my shoulder pain raged on. I decided a visit to the 'ol family Doc was in order and I managed to get in right away. Actually, I hadn't been to our 'ol' family Doc in so long that he actually died and my family had replaced him sometime back in the early '90s. Since this was technically my first visit I had to fill out an hour's worth of paperwork with a numb, barely functioning arm. The receptionist was merciless as she shoved the clipboard into my limp, blue hand. By the time I finished, my arm was so sore I would've licked a used morphine IV bag. With the solitary thought of Vicodin on my mind, I sat through an hours worth of Discovery Health Channel, the most sleep-inducing thing ever to hit the Adelphia Bronze package. Finally, after being poked and probed by an awful penguiny woman, the old doctor entered my examining room. Rather than outright beg for some good painkillers, I took the coy approach, recounting to him all the tales of pain and horror I had been experiencing, hoping he would just get the hint and write the damn prescription just to shut me up. "Just a muscle spasm" he said as he gave me the same look the first doctor had given me, a look that said "Shame on you, junkie." "I don't believe in giving out narcotics for things like this" he said as I visibly sank to the bottom of the Sea of Disappointment. He suggested 800mg of Ibuprofin three times a day and and some boring old physical therapy. Dazed, I was led back out into the lobby before I even had a chance to spit out "Gimme the god-damn drugs!" I called my mother and scolded her for picking the uptight stiff as our family doctor in the first place. Finally the other morning, I decided I could no longer take the pain, and after a mild nervous breakdown, I decided I would waltz into the Immediate Care and demand some of the good stuff. As I recounted my sad tragedy to the Doctor, I could see I might finally have an ally, as she gave me a series of looks as warm, and comforting as fresh baked-cookies-and milk. "Put out your arms and twist them like you're dumping out beer cans", she said, as I grimaced in pain. She knows me all too well, I thought. After a few similarly uncomfortable arm and shoulder routines, she lit up. "Rotator Cuff Tendonitis!" Fabulous, I thought, now gimme the pills. "I know just what you need" she said as she handed me over a crisp prescription. "This'll act as an anti-inflammatory and help with your pain." "It better had, be-otch" I thought to myself as I headed to the pharmacy. Note: I am not normally a huge pill popper or anything, but my shoulder had been hurting so rotten, I was desperate for relief. I read the label on the pill bottle with remote suspicion: "Skelaxin Metaxalone." I got on the phone. "Ever heard of Skelaxin Metaxalone?" No one had. The list of warnings was long and luscious: No alcohol ("Oh no, of course not!"), no driving, no breastfeeding, no forklift operating, no jazz dancing. So over Chinese lunch I popped one, and then another. And slowly....Finally....Sweet.....sweet.....Relief. Here was an interesting drug. It's not terribly spacey, but kills any and all pain that might linger anywhere in your tired old body in an amazing way. I had expected to float off in a narcotic haze on the couch, but I had a strange kind of energy and a tremendous sense of refreshment. It was the first time in many moons that I could clean house etc. Without saying "Ouch!" every 10 seconds. As for masturbation, well...no comment. After the initial novelty wore off, I began to crave the spaciness that comes with more Opiate-based painkillers. I mean, it is rather nice just to be able to slip away and lose an afternoon to HGTV and a pint of Ben & Jerry's Oatmeal Cookie Chunk. Well, thank heavens for old friends, one of whom stopped by yesterday armed to the gills with sweet, sweet Lortab 7.5 Hydrocodone. "Oh, those?" She was so blase about her stash of pure narcotic gold. "Here, have as many as you want, I get and endless supply, and so does my Mom, and so does my Dad." Tears practically welled up in my eyes as I realized the hassle I could have avoided by just calling her up in the first place. Pain free at last and melting into the furniture, smiling. It will have to do until I can get to Physical Therapy, which at this rate actually might have to wait until after Rehab....
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Three friends and I are sitting here, comparing aches and pains, and laughing sympathetically at this ode to pharmacological wellness. As the youngest of our triumverate I have only recently understood the relief that a well placed vicodan or percocet can provide to my aging knees. While none of us recommend frank abuse of anything (except as the author mentions, masturbation) its great to have a few beers, complain, let the spouses go off, and share a few new tabs over some beers. Speaking of which, hasn't the FDA ever heard of the VALUE of mixing beer and pharms? Someone needs to do their research.Post a Comment
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