Bee’s Knees: Pre-TKR, Setback

From the last post…1/24/2022

This post is officially done…for now. Next stop, Total Knee Replacement.

On 1/23/2023 I said:

“New, Approved-Dentist finished up everything he needed so I got Dental Clearance. This is the final piece of the clearance puzzles”

At the end of that appointment, Approved-Dentist gave me a prescription for an antibiotic, just in case.

Stupid me. I asked the intake nurse about that. She reported it to the surgeon who moved my surgery from 2/2/2023 to 3/9/2023. If someone else is rescheduled, I might be able to move mine back. Maybe.

Then, other test results came back – staph infection in my nose, maybe UTI.

Wednesday, 1/25/2023

So, I am still limping around, changing all the physical therapy appointments I’d set up for the 2/2 surgery. One of the positives is that I get more time in water aerobics building up my leg muscles.

A very positive:

1/27/23 was our 50-year anniversary. Amazing! We celebrated early with a cruise on the Wonder of the Seas. I’m still assembling those photos/posts but we went a little earlier in the month because it was cheaper 🙂 I chose this cruise because I thought it would be cool to be on the current world’s largest cruise ship. I have been on larger ships but DH has not.

We have another cruise scheduled for the Arctic Circle in July but I may not make it because of the new surgery date and recovery. I am very excited about that cruise because we tried to do something very similar and Covid changed those plans.

Someone pointed out that, since the new surgery is more than 30 days away, I may have to do all the clearances again.

Today, 1/28/23 is the 10th anniversary of the fall that started all this. My first post about my knee was really about Tom’s heart attack, and the reason for this blog in the first place. Who know that the knee thing would eclipse everything?

In that post I said:

Ice

Monday morning (for real!), I checked the weather and found that school was starting late because of icy conditions.  I put on boots and took the dog out.  It seemed to be raining – if it’s raining, it must be warm, right?  So I didn’t really pay attention (and I had other things on my mind!) and completely missed seeing the black ice.  Next thing I knew, I had fallen on one knee, my cellphone in my pocket bruised my other thigh and my left arm hurt where I’d reached out to catch myself.  Luckily, I hadn’t let go of the dog’s leash.

I ended up sitting in a puddle of icy water for a long time, figuring out how to get up.  I finally sort of crawled up the trash can that was sitting in the driveway.

The dog had an abbreviated walk, I changed my wet, cold clothes and headed to the hospital.  I was showing DH my knee and one of the staff bandaged it up for me.  I told him I hadn’t fallen at the hospital and wouldn’t sue but I guess he wanted to be sure.

(Today, Monday February 18 2013, my knee still has a huge lump under the skin and hurts when I touch it, although I’m no longer limping,  The bruise/pain from cellphone finally went away)

The very first of the Bee’s Knees series was February 28, 2016. I had no idea it would go on so very long. Like I said in the last post, I sure hope this is trus!

This post is (hopefully!) officially done…for now. Next stop, Total Knee Replacement.

Bee’s Knees: Pre-TKR, Part 2

From the last post…12/4/2022 And, there was good news and some surprising news. I got to the doctors office and right away they took x-rays. The results were “Evidence of end stage bilateral knee OA, L>R. Evidence of complete joint
space narrowing. Evidence of osteophyte formation. Evidence of cyst formation

I had no idea that my right knee was as bad. I guess I’ve been so focused on my left that it never occurred to me that I might have other issues.

The term “end stage” was a bit freaky. That sounds to me like I should be bedridden or something.

~~~

1/18/2023

Reject-Dentist still hasn’t sent the receipt, a treatment plan or called to discuss it yet. They did send me an email today asking me to set up an appointment.

Also on 1/18, I went to Reston Hospital for pre-op clearance. This was the third appointment this week, all because of my knee.

1/23/2023

New, Approved-Dentist finished up everything he needed so I got Dental Clearance. This is the final piece of the clearance puzzles

When I got home yesterday I had a new insurance card in the mail. I read all the information and it said I had dental insurance. Reject-Dentist had said that I didn’t so I assumed that I didn’t. Now I get to collect my papers from Approved-Dentist and submit those.

I was supposed to attend a class on knee replacement but the next one isn’t until next month so I got to watch a video instead. I also found this one very helpful:

This post is officially done…for now. Next stop, Total Knee Replacement.

Bee’s Knees: Pre-TKR

From the last post…12/4/2022 And, there was good news and some surprising news. I got to the doctors office and right away they took x-rays. The results were “Evidence of end stage bilateral knee OA, L>R. Evidence of complete joint
space narrowing. Evidence of osteophyte formation. Evidence of cyst formation

I had no idea that my right knee was as bad. I guess I’ve been so focused on my left that it never occurred to me that I might have other issues.

The term “end stage” was a bit freaky. That sounds to me like I should be bedridden or something.

~~~

12/17/2022

So, I’ve scheduled the surgery but i don’t have a specific time yet – I do have a date and a date for follow up and dates for physical therapy.

My dental clearance didn’t go well yesterday.

The new dentist never got my multi-page form and asked me for it in several emails and texts.  I had filled it out as soon as I made the appointment and emailed a copy which they never got. Fortunately, I printed it out.

The parking situation was bad, I hadn’t considered that it was a mall-type place and just before Christmas. After circling the buildings a few times, I had to park in a parking garage and walk. Remember, I’m doing this because of knee surgery.

I got to the building and…I was stuck in the elevator. I tried pushing any and all buttons but I never moved. Finally, I called the office and told them I was in the elevator and they sent someone out who pushed the button on the second floor and I started moving up.

The receptionist didn’t know who I was or why I was there but I had that 8-page printout of their form. I was surprised to see a bowl of candy canes on the main desk – really?

I finally went back and was (very slightly) calmed by the fact that the background music was Mannheim Steamroller.

I told the dental assistant what she would have known had they seen/read my form: I have been terrified of dentists since I was thrown out of one when I was a child (I’ll share more about this later), I have a very small mouth and a bad gag reflex.

She did the preliminary xrays and finally, the real dentist came in. She never looked at me but told my back that she wouldn’t approve me for surgery because there was a “lot of work she wanted to do first.”

I escaped to the front desk and the printer was broken. No receipt for my payment and no copy of a treatment plan. The person assured me that she would email them to me.

I was very leery of that elevator, so I took the stairs and walked back to my car.

Friday and Saturday and neither the treatment plan or the receipt for payment ever arrived.

I tried to log into their system to see if I could get the info that way and I’m not listed as a patient. It did ask me to fill out the forms…again.

Along about now, I decided that this wasn’t the dental practice for me so I found a new dentist, located way closer, on the first floor, in my old bank. I see him Monday. For a person terrified of the dentist seeing 2 in 2.5 days is amazing. I must really want to get my knee fixed!

On Saturday night, reject-dentist asked for a review. I’m waiting for new-dentist to be sure I’m not going back before I fill it out but I don’t think they’ll want to see what I have to say!

When getting dressed on Sunday morning, I found a small cut on my lip, possibly from Friday’s visit and then a filling fell out. Hmmm. Was she creating some of the work she wanted to do?

Monday, new dentist. I got to the new, closer dentist and they also had candy out in the waiting room. Also, they didn’t get my new patient forms and this is starting to look like a rerun.

They took me back and the receptionist was very kind and gentle and she listened to my bad dentist stories from long ago and last Friday.

More x-rays, the dentist came in and he talked to me, too. After the review and in-mouth checkup, he also wants to do a lot of work BUT he is working around my upcoming cruise and he thinks he can get this done so I can keep my surgery schedule. What a change from reject-dentist.

Unfortunately, that means I get a root canal and crown later today. But still. More after he actually does some work!

My TKR (total knee replacement) surgery is scheduled for 2/2, which is Groundhog Day. I’ve been telling people I hope it doesn’t mean I have to keep repeating my surgery! Now, it seems I keep repeating dental visits, too.

Later Monday, December 19, 2022 – the afternoon wasn’t as bad as I remembered partly because somehow, my root canal had closed up. The dentist said that was “good news and bad news” because I had saved myself from the full treatment today AND saved a bit of money – like $1000. I guess the bad news is if i ever get decay under my new crown, I won’t have any pain to let me know. Sounds like good news to me.

Interestingly, the beginning of the crown the muted tv was showing the same program as the tv at reject-dentist. Maybe there’s a Dental TV station?

My next dentist thing is “just” a cleaning on December 28 and a tentative permanent crown on January 3.

Hopefully, no more knee related issues until then.

Meanwhile, it’s Wednesday night and Reject-Dentist still hasn’t sent a treatment plan or called to discuss it yet.

This post is officially done…for now

Bee’s Knees and (Rose) Hips

Original Bee’s Knees  I have been dealing with this *stuff* for almost 11 years now. I was finally approved for Orthovisic and my first injection of 3 was on March 2, 2022.

Since April 2, 2022 it seems like things have gotten worse again.

Fortunately, I got back into a water exercise class, not at my “favorite pool” but it’s still good.

My knee has been waking me up again, though and it’s hard to walk. Since Sunday, October 30, 2022, I’ve had sciatica too – at least it’s on the same leg. I have a message in to my doctor. This pain is driving me nuts. I can’t sleep, I can’t stand, I can’t walk. I haven’t been to the pool or the hot tub in over a week.

I finally have an appointment tomorrow (11/30/2022) with a new orthopedic doctor. Hopefully, there will be good, or better, news after the doctor appointment.

Hopefully soon…

Bee’s Knees – The New Chapter Drags On!

Original Bee’s Knees  I have been dealing with this *stuff* for 10 years now. I was finally approved for Orthovisic and my first injection of 3 was on March 2, 2022.

Since April 2, 2022 it seems like things have gotten worse again.

Fortunately, I got back into a water exercise class, not at my “favorite pool” but it’s still good.

My knee has been waking me up again, though and it’s hard to walk. Since last Sunday, I’ve had sciatica too – at least it’s on the same leg. I have a message in to my doctor. This pain is driving me nuts. I can’t sleep, I can’t stand, I can’t walk. I haven’t been to the pool or the hot tub in over a week.

Hopefully, there will be good, or better, news after the doctor appointment.

I found an article that said in part “Also of note, the data did suggest that hyaluronic acid injections are not totally benign. With 15 trials (6,462 participants) reporting adverse events in sufficient detail, da Costa and colleagues calculated that the shots came with significantly elevated risk for serious complications (relative risk 1.49, 95% CI 1.12-1.98). “Overall, 3.7% of patients receiving viscosupplementation and 2.5% receiving placebo experienced a serious adverse event,” the researchers found.”

I don’t know if what I’m going through is a “serious adverse event” but it’s certainly serious and adverse to me!

———————

How it went from Wednesday, March 2, 2022 when I got my first Orthovisc injection through March 30 with my GP-type doctor.  He watched how I walked and determined that my knee is swollen all around and performed Arthrocentesis (knee drain).

He said “Visibly swollen with protuberance in posterior fossa. Not warm to touch. Ballotable patella.

See aspiration note below: lateral subpatellar approach enabled withdrawal of 5cc straw colored clear fluid. 40mg kenelog + 4cc lidocaine injected easily. Substantial pain relief afterward and gait improved.

Read that post here.


March 30 after I got home from the doctor. First thing, I sent a note to my piano students cancelling lessons for today, then took a short nap and posted my blog post.  There was still pain so about 7, I had some wine.  It’s been a long time but I hoped it dulls the pain some.

9:45, put on an ice pack we had in the freezer already

midnight, bedtime – trouble running to the toilet.

March 31. I slept until 6:30. Not much pain when I woke up.

Thursday March 31 – woke up and was able to stand without a lot of pain.  Slept 5 hours, 16 minutes or 66% of needed sleep time.

went into work – about 2 something suddenly felt painful so I put on the brace again.  I am here until 9 pm tonight.

About 6, my knee started hurting more – I had rehearsals at 7 and 7:30.  During the second rehearsal, there were tornado and thunderstorm warnings and my knee got a lot worse.  I was able to put my leg up on a chair.  When I got home at 9:30, I iced it some more.

Friday, April 1, woke up and was able to stand without a lot of pain.  Slept 6 hours, 4 minutes or 76% of needed time.  Today is a “day off” so I hope to nap this afternoon.

As of 11:30 am, no brace yet.

about 5:40 or so, my knee started hurting under the patella.  The bandage came off and the area is looking a little reddish (to me) but it’s hard to tell.  I did get a nap, so I’ve now slept 6 hours, 38 minutes or 83%.  The new gel ring came and is in the freezer for a little later tonight.

I tried the new gel ring – said it “rolled on” which was great.  Unfortunately, it also rolled off when standing up.

Saturday, April 2

Hopefully soon…

Bee’s Knees – A New Chapter Continues!

Original Bee’s Knees  I have been dealing with this *stuff* for 9 years now. I was finally approved for Orthovisic and my first injection of 3 was on March 2, 2022.

How it went from Wednesday, March 2, 2022 when I got my first Orthovisc injection through March 30 with my GP-type doctor.  He watched how I walked and determined that my knee is swollen all around and performed Arthrocentesis (knee drain).

He said “Visibly swollen with protuberance in posterior fossa. Not warm to touch. Ballotable patella.

See aspiration note below: lateral subpatellar approach enabled withdrawal of 5cc straw colored clear fluid. 40mg kenelog + 4cc lidocaine injected easily. Substantial pain relief afterward and gait improved.

Read that post here.


March 30 after I got home from the doctor. First thing, I sent a note to my piano students cancelling lessons for today, then took a short nap and posted my blog post.  There was still pain so about 7, I had some wine.  It’s been a long time but I hoped it dulls the pain some.

9:45, put on an ice pack we had in the freezer already

midnight, bedtime – trouble running to the toilet.

March 31. I slept until 6:30. Not much pain when I woke up.

Thursday March 31 – woke up and was able to stand without a lot of pain.  Slept 5 hours, 16 minutes or 66% of needed sleep time.

went into work – about 2 something suddenly felt painful so I put on the brace again.  I am here until 9 pm tonight.

About 6, my knee started hurting more – I had rehearsals at 7 and 7:30.  During the second rehearsal, there were tornado and thunderstorm warnings and my knee got a lot worse.  I was able to put my leg up on a chair.  When I got home at 9:30, I iced it some more.

Friday, April 1, woke up and was able to stand without a lot of pain.  Slept 6 hours, 4 minutes or 76% of needed time.  Today is a “day off” so I hope to nap this afternoon.

As of 11:30 am, no brace yet.

about 5:40 or so, my knee started hurting under the patella.  The bandage came off and the area is looking a little reddish (to me) but it’s hard to tell.  I did get a nap, so I’ve now slept 6 hours, 38 minutes or 83%.  The new gel ring came and is in the freezer for a little later tonight.

I tried the new gel ring – said it “rolled on” which was great.  Unfortunately, it also rolled off when standing up.

Saturday, April 2

Hopefully soon…

Bee’s Knees – A New Chapter Begins!

Original Bee’s Knees  I have been dealing with this *stuff* for 9 years now.

I was finally approved for Orthovisic and my first injection of 3 was on March 2.

I was so excited when I started this post. Little did I know. Here’s how it’s been so far:

Wednesday, March 2, 2022 I got my first Orthovisc injection.

By Thursday, March 3 my knee was 90% better

On Wednesday March 9, I had injection 2

On the 10th, knee is still better

March 11 slept 91%, no knee pillow. good night’s sleep finally

March 12 woke up with sharp knee pain – screamed

March 13 – maybe that it was 21 degrees out affected things, maybe not.  Knee hurt a little all day.

Somehow, the pain feels different than before the injections. It feels like it could be the back of my leg – maybe I tore my muscle after I felt so good after Shot#!.

March 15, Stepped out of bed sharp pain

March 16, Injection 3, final.  It felt like needle moved in my knee

And from there things go

I started having pain standing/walking again and using a pillow between my knees at night.  Many nights I took 3 Tylenol just to see if I could get some sleep

March 26, I stood up from bed, fell backwards back down. Luckily, the bed was there.

March 29, The pain was excruciating so I 3 tylenol before bed and ordered a gel band from amazon. It freezes so I can ice my knee all around. I also did some reading about pain after OrthoVisc and some sites mentioned fluid on the knee or fluid behind the knee (Baker’s Cyst). I tried to look at my knees in the mirror without much success but my DH looked and he thought my left knee, the one in question, looked bigger than the right.

March 30 – today! – I got up this morning and I could barely walk. I went on amazon again and ordered a 3-wheel walker. I tried to make an appointment with the doctor who did the OrthoVisc but he wasn’t available until April 28.

Luckily, I was able to make an appointment for today with my GP-type doctor.  He watched how I walked and determined that my knee is swollen all around.

He said “Visibly swollen with protuberance in posterior fossa. Not warm to touch. Ballotable patella.

See aspiration note below: lateral subpatellar approach enabled withdrawal of 5cc straw colored clear fluid. 40mg kenelog + 4cc lidocaine injected easily. Substantial pain relief afterward and gait improved

He drained my knee (Arthrocentesis) some but couldn’t get a lot of the fluid out. Actually, looking at the numbers, he took out about equal numbers with the lidocaine and cortisone he injected  I suggested he install a faucet to help me keep this draining. He was hoping that it might continue to drain into the thick bandage he put on.

In his after-care notes he said “I hope that this injection and ice allow the swelling in you knee to go down. If the pain resumes along with swelling, I suggest taking the oral prednisone. Regardless, please get in touch with Dr. X (Orthovisc injector). Let me know if you have increased pain, redness, warmth, or fever.

Oh joy!

I came home and was able to take a nap, at least. Unfortunately, I had to cancel piano students to do so. My knee is still uncomfortable and I’m having trouble walking but I think the injection and the Arthrocentesis help in the coming days.

I really don’t want to do this knee draining thing often. Even with the lidocaine, it was painful. Not the worst pain I have ever had but nothing I’d sign up for fun. My worst-ever pain day was April 28, 2006. That day was the day I learned I had Kidney Cancer, which became the reason I can only take Tylenol for my pain. My endo will be unhappy if I take that Prednisone and he is always unhappy when I get cortisone in my knee.

Hopefully soon…

Bee’s Knees 10

Sigh.  Today is the 9th anniversary of the fall on my knee.  There is not much change at all.  I keep a record everyday of how I’m doing in a variety of areas.  Every day I check off “knee pain” but I also have levels 1-10.  I don’t think it ever goes below 5.

Some nights I wake up with throbbing and move to the sofa.  I think maybe tossing and turning in bed makes my knee worse – I can’t do that on the sofa.

SalonPas is still my friend.  And braces and Tylenol.

This year, I hope to get that gel injection.  I’m a bit hesitant because it may make things even worse for a while and it takes 3 weeks to complete the series.  My schedule is already pretty tight and I don’t know how to work in 3 more appointments.

Our trip to Alaska (mentioned below) worked out well.  I travelled with the aforementioned SalonPas etc. and carried all in my backpack on various excursions.

Due to COVID we had to be tested before we went and show our vaccination cards several times before boarding.

I have the CovidWise app on my phone.  when we got home, I found that we had been exposed before the cruise while we were in Seattle.  I didn’t find this out until after the cruise because I had my phone turned off at sea.  It’s just as well that I didn’t know before/during.  I’m not sure what I would have done.

This year we have been to New York a few times to see our grandson.  We’ve started walking from the hotel to their home.  It hurts but it’s useful.  It’s also faster to walk than take an Uber, thanks to one-way streets in NYC.

Our Tattoo that was cancelled last year has been rescheduled for August.  I was surprised that we got a credit for this year.  I’d figured that it was a donation to the Tattoo fund.  So, we will get to walk around Scotland in August.

In September we have another cruise coming up – I will have to schedule that gel injection (hyaluronan (ORTHOVISC) 30 MG/2ML injection 30 mg), probably in July to make it work for August and September.

well-see


This is a continuation of an ongoing knee issue.  It started in 2013 with Icy Days and Mondays and Bee’s Knees I’m hoping to end my knee pain in the very near future.

Here is is July and we have a second trip to see our grandson this coming weekend and the rescheduled/rescheduled cruise in August.  That cruise started out as going to Norway a couple years ago.  That was canceled so we decided on Alaska with the train to Denali in June.  That was cancelled and Canada isn’t allowing people in, so we’re sailing out of Seattle, past Canada and on to Alaska.  We’ve seen some of the ports already but I just wanted to go somewhere, anywhere.

I’ve been having pain, bigger again and I hate to have that in NYC – or on a cruise.  It’s one thing to be kept awake with pain here at home and another entirely when you want to do things.

I had trusted that the doctor cleared that gel injection (hyaluronan (ORTHOVISC) 30 MG/2ML injection 30 mg) with my insurance company but it was a new doctor (the 5th one for my knee issues) today.  The last doctor had put the paperwork in but it never went anywhere.

Today was too soon for another cortisone shot.  I could have paid $380 for the gel and hoped that insurance would pay – but that was the first of 3 weekly injections and the doctor didn’t think it would start to help by this weekend, anyway.

He mentioned physical therapy again and/or possible surgery.  He did send me for another x-ray, which was promising.  By some fluke, his office takes my insurance but the attached radiology department doesn’t – so we went to the next-door hospital for that.

My results:

There is moderate to marked degenerative arthritis in the left
knee with joint space narrowing and osteophyte formation which is most
prominent in the medial compartment. A minimal joint effusion is
present. There is no evidence of a fracture.

After I left the doctor, a nurse called and said that I might be allergic to the Voltaren that a previous doctor had prescribed but I haven’t tried yet.  I’m supposed to try that and let them know.

I guess I’ll be taking my SalonPas, knee brace and lots of Tylenol to NYC.


“Quick kneecap recap” below from April 7, 2021:

First of all, came this article.  I’d already decided to get only one – max 2 – injections a year, with one of them being a week before a cruise.  Our cruise scheduled for June most likely will not happen – neither will our trip to see the Edinburgh Tattoo again in August.

I had been keeping up with water aerobics and the hot tub until both of those were canceled due to COVID-19.  So, my knee pain gradually started getting worse again.  Luckily, I’m not walking around so much and we don’t have stairs at home.  About 8 months or so ago, the pool opened up for water walking and lap swimming – with lots of rules, of course, but I manage to go about 3 times a week.  Often DH goes with me.  Unfortunately, the hot tub isn’t open

I’m still having lots of meetings on Zoom as well as piano teaching.  For those meetings, I’ve been using an iPad on a music stand. To be able to see well while sitting on the sofa, the stand and iPad need to be almost vertical.

My last steroid injection was in September 2019.  Thanks to COVID, I haven’t been hardly anywhere so no real (k)need.

However!, New York City has lifted it’s quarantine restrictions, so we’re going to go meet our new grandson…and I need an injection before we go.

good-news

Monday, April 5, I got that injection – and a lot of hope, finally.  For my fourth injection, I had a fourth different doctor.  This one had other options for me that no one else had every suggested.  A long-lasting gel injection, a saline/dextrose solution (I said it sounded like salty sugar water!)

On Monday, he actually used Ultrasound to guide the needle in.  He went about 2 inches above the knee from the outside to get the the inner part.  The others didn’t do that – they just went directly into the knee, just guessing where to send the steroids.

[COMPLETED] triamcinolone acetonide (KENALOG-40) 40 MG/ML injection 40 mg
40 mg
Other

It was so cool watching him do this.  I told him my last injections had lasted maybe a couple weeks and he said they should be much longer than that, which is why he wants to try the gel injection (hyaluronan (ORTHOVISC) 30 MG/2ML injection 30 mg) in the summer.  Apparently, it takes several months to get insurance approval – and he already started the paperwork!

I had the usual extra pain on Monday night (took 3 Tylenol), and normal pain on Tuesday,  Wednesday, I was feeling pretty good but had to skip the pool because you can’t go in for 48 hours after a knee injection.

I am just so happy to see other alternatives to steroids – or surgery.

Off to NYC tomorrow!



Read the rest of the Bee’s Knees Posts

Stay tuned for…

Covid Vaccine Booster

Quick takeaway: I have adrenal insufficiency (one adrenal was removed with my kidney due to cancer, steroid-dependent (post-Cushing’s Disease), growth hormone insufficiency, panhypopituitary.  I had some issues after my first COVID-19 injection (Moderna) but not too bad.  My booster was October 27, 2021.  That time I was smart and updosed on my Cortef (hydrocortisone) right after the shot.  My main side effects this time were chills and fatigue.


Wednesday, October 27, 2021: This time I went to a CVS inside a Target store.

I got a text from CVS asking me to click a link when I arrived at 11:00 and it gave me directions on where to go.

I was about 10 minutes early, so I had to wait a bit, even though no one was ahead of me.

The nurse asked if left arm was ok to use.

The shot was not quite as fast – I felt it a bit but I am used to giving myself daily injections so this was no biggie..

I sat in the waiting area for about 10 minutes to be sure there were no problems but no one checked on me.

This time I was smart – right after leaving the CVS I took a stress dose of Cortef (hydrocortisone).

I also had an appointment with my doctor about a recurring cyst.  She prescribed doxycycline (antibiotic) twice a day on an empty stomach.

I cancelled my piano students for the day and took a nap for the rest of the day wearing a sweater and hoodie and under three blankets – I was so cold and a little dizzy/disoriented – I can never remember the difference between the two.. 

I was so tired, I skipped my growth hormone injection.

My arm seems like it is more sore than last time.

About 2 am, I got up needing to go to the bathroom and I was still so cold.  I was under 3 blankets and a bathrobe. 

Thursday, October 28, 2021:  My arm was sorer than Monday and I was still feeling very cold and dizzy. 

IMG_0799

It was a work day so I went in but I know I nodded off at my desk a few times.  I went home about 3 and fell asleep almost immediately.  My DH woke up at 6 for a meeting – I had intended to sleep through it.  It was at church, so I laid down on one of the pews and slept there through the meeting.  DH took me home instead of going to choir rehearsal.

I skipped my growth hormone injection again.

I had no trouble sleeping this time and slept until about 10 on Friday.

Friday, October 29, 2021:  I don’t know if it’s from the injection of the antibiotic but I threw up in the morning and I went back to sleep. I was feeling cold but I don’t know if it was chills or really a cold. 

It was my mom’s birthday (98!) but we didn’t really get to celebrate much.

I skipped my growth hormone injection again.  I didn’t fall asleep right away at bedtime and was able to read a little bit so that’s an improvement!

Saturday, October 30, 2021: I’m a little more tired than usual but ok – I woke up about 8 for my first antibiotic and didn’t take my first nap until 12:30.  Then, I spent time napping through the day. I’m still cold but “normal cold” with just a sweatshirt (and socks).

My arm is achy but not really sore like yesterday.

Sunday, October 31, 2021: Just the normal tiredness.  Hooray!  We went back to water exercise.  I took off my bandage for the first time and noticed that the site had bled a little. Oh well. While I was in the pool, I had another of those lightning headaches but didn’t get out of the pool for Tylenol because I knew it was quick.


Info below from https://medshadow.org/covid19-vaccine-side-effects/  I’ve had the bold ones so far after the second injection.

Moderna

Moderna started Phase III clinical trials for its vaccine candidate in July. In earlier trials, nearly half of patients experienced common adverse effects like injection site pain, rash, headaches, muscle soreness, nausea and fevers after the second injection. These effects generally subsided within two days. CNBC spoke to a few individuals, some participating in Moderna’s trial and some in Pfizer’s trial who said much the same thing: the side effects were intense and included a high fever, body aches, bad headaches and exhaustion, but were worth it for protection from Covid-19.

In the FDA report published in December, the most common side effects were pain at injection site (91.6% of patients), fatigue (68.5%), headache (63.0%), muscle pain (59.6%), joint pain (44.8%), and chills (43.4%). Three patients experienced Bell’s Palsy, a sudden, and usually temporary, weakening or paralysis of the facial muscles.

A few patients with facial fillers experienced swelling after receiving the vaccine. They were treated with antihistamines and steroids. In California, officials halted the use of one particular batch of Moderna vaccines (lot 41L20A) after a small cluster (fewer than 10) of patients at one particular site experienced allergic reactions that required medical attention.

Out of the first 7.5 million doses administered from Dec 14- Jan 18, 19 cases of anaphylaxis were reported to VAERS after the Moderna vaccine. No patients have died from anaphylaxis. Patients are now being monitored for 15-30 minutes after receiving the vaccine to watch for signs of anaphylaxis.

Many patients are reporting injection site reactions that show up shortly after the injection or up to a week later. These reactions — which are characterized by swelling, redness, itching, rashes, heat and pain — are expected to last a day to a week. Physicians emphasize that while these effects can be scary, they are not dangerous and should not prevent someone from getting the second shot. So far, doctors do not report seeing these reactions after the second shot, however so few have been given so far that scientists are not sure how common it will be on round two.

The CDC reports that 11% of patients experienced swollen lymph nodes after the first shot. That raised to 16% after the second shot.

A study posted on Feb 1 showed that patients who received the vaccine after having been previously infected with COVID-19 showed greater immune response to the first shot and more intense side effects that are associated with strong immune responses like fever and muscle aches. The study included patients who received either the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine. Some scientists believe these patients may only need a single shot to provide sufficient immunity, but more research is needed.

Moderna has announced that it will begin testing its vaccine in children and adolescents, who they believe may have stronger immune responses, leading to more intense side effects.

This page has information about the other brands of vaccine: https://fairfaxcountyemergency.wpcomstaging.com/2021/02/16/what-you-need-to-know-when-you-get-vaccinated-and-after-you-get-vaccinated/

A really good article – Coronavirus Life: What To Expect When You Get Vaccinated Against COVID-19

Bee’s Knees 9

This is a continuation of an ongoing knee issue.  It started in 2013 with Icy Days and Mondays and Bee’s Knees I’m hoping to end my knee pain in the very near future.

Here is is July and we have a second trip to see our grandson this coming weekend and the rescheduled/rescheduled cruise in August.  That cruise started out as going to Norway a couple years ago.  That was canceled so we decided on Alaska with the train to Denali in June.  That was cancelled and Canada isn’t allowing people in, so we’re sailing out of Seattle, past Canada and on to Alaska.  We’ve seen some of the ports already but I just wanted to go somewhere, anywhere.

I’ve been having pain, bigger again and I hate to have that in NYC – or on a cruise.  It’s one thing to be kept awake with pain here at home and another entirely when you want to do things.

I had trusted that the doctor cleared that gel injection (hyaluronan (ORTHOVISC) 30 MG/2ML injection 30 mg) with my insurance company but it was a new doctor (the 5th one for my knee issues) today.  The last doctor had put the paperwork in but it never went anywhere.

Today was too soon for another cortisone shot.  I could have paid $380 for the gel and hoped that insurance would pay – but that was the first of 3 weekly injections and the doctor didn’t think it would start to help by this weekend, anyway.

He mentioned physical therapy again and/or possible surgery.  He did send me for another x-ray, which was promising.  By some fluke, his office takes my insurance but the attached radiology department doesn’t – so we went to the next-door hospital for that.

My results:

There is moderate to marked degenerative arthritis in the left
knee with joint space narrowing and osteophyte formation which is most
prominent in the medial compartment. A minimal joint effusion is
present. There is no evidence of a fracture.

After I left the doctor, a nurse called and said that I might be allergic to the Voltaren that a previous doctor had prescribed but I haven’t tried yet.  I’m supposed to try that and let them know.

I guess I’ll be taking my SalonPas, knee brace and lots of Tylenol to NYC.


“Quick kneecap recap” below from April 7, 2021:

First of all, came this article.  I’d already decided to get only one – max 2 – injections a year, with one of them being a week before a cruise.  Our cruise scheduled for June most likely will not happen – neither will our trip to see the Edinburgh Tattoo again in August.

I had been keeping up with water aerobics and the hot tub until both of those were canceled due to COVID-19.  So, my knee pain gradually started getting worse again.  Luckily, I’m not walking around so much and we don’t have stairs at home.  About 8 months or so ago, the pool opened up for water walking and lap swimming – with lots of rules, of course, but I manage to go about 3 times a week.  Often DH goes with me.  Unfortunately, the hot tub isn’t open

I’m still having lots of meetings on Zoom as well as piano teaching.  For those meetings, I’ve been using an iPad on a music stand. To be able to see well while sitting on the sofa, the stand and iPad need to be almost vertical.

My last steroid injection was in September 2019.  Thanks to COVID, I haven’t been hardly anywhere so no real (k)need.

However!, New York City has lifted it’s quarantine restrictions, so we’re going to go meet our new grandson…and I need an injection before we go.

good-news

Monday, April 5, I got that injection – and a lot of hope, finally.  For my fourth injection, I had a fourth different doctor.  This one had other options for me that no one else had every suggested.  A long-lasting gel injection, a saline/dextrose solution (I said it sounded like salty sugar water!)

On Monday, he actually used Ultrasound to guide the needle in.  He went about 2 inches above the knee from the outside to get the the inner part.  The others didn’t do that – they just went directly into the knee, just guessing where to send the steroids.

[COMPLETED] triamcinolone acetonide (KENALOG-40) 40 MG/ML injection 40 mg
40 mg
Other

It was so cool watching him do this.  I told him my last injections had lasted maybe a couple weeks and he said they should be much longer than that, which is why he wants to try the gel injection (hyaluronan (ORTHOVISC) 30 MG/2ML injection 30 mg) in the summer.  Apparently, it takes several months to get insurance approval – and he already started the paperwork!

I had the usual extra pain on Monday night (took 3 Tylenol), and normal pain on Tuesday,  Wednesday, I was feeling pretty good but had to skip the pool because you can’t go in for 48 hours after a knee injection.

I am just so happy to see other alternatives to steroids – or surgery.

Off to NYC tomorrow!



Read the rest of the Bee’s Knees Posts

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