June 30, 2006

Infirmary Update: On The Road Again

I had a productive day today, two weeks after my surgery, which is why posting has been light. I got to drive my own car for the first time in three weeks, just in the local neighborhood. I took the First Mate to dialysis under the watchful eye of my sister, who made sure that I didn't get in trouble. It felt great; I didn't realize how much being at the mercy of others for transportation needs had gotten me down. I even got the car washed and drove to my optometrist before picking the FM up from her appointment. The back got pretty sore by the time I finished, but it still felt pretty good to get out under my own steam.

The optometrist gave me less thrilling news, unfortunately. I haven't had an exam in three years, and my eyes have changed enough now where I need bifocals. That sends the message Welcome To Middle Age in letters big enough even for me to read them. I'll have to wear glasses everywhere now, which is pretty much what I had been doing with my reading glasses anyway. Also, the doctor spotted a retinal abnormality with the retinal photography this clinic uses. It looks like a little fluid has penetrated under the retina at the far edge of the right eye, along with some old spot bleeding. It may have been there all along, but she wants a retinal surgeon to take a look at it. At worst, I'll need some laser treatment to tack it back down, but it's small and in an area that doesn't affect my vision.

Let this be a reminder to you to have your eyes checked every year. Skipping your annual exam can be dangerous to your health. The FM, my sister, and the doctor all threatened me with physical violence if I miss another one, so that can serve as your example.

The FM continues to improve. The viral load on the BK infection has come down dramatically, but the CMV load has decreased only slightly. The hemoglobin still shows some instability, and now we think that one of her medications may be a contributing cause; the doctors have to all get together to review the pharmacology and determine if changes are needed. She still needs oxygenation, but her coloring and energy levels have improved quite a bit since her last hospitalization.

Hope all of you have a great weekend.


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