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Stimulator Adjustment- Take 3

Posted May 04 2009 5:26pm
It's a known fact that heat does not agree with me. It makes me snarky. And sweaty. When the temperature is above 80, I have a permanent glistening on my upper lip. DH takes it upon himself to blot for me. I appreciate this little gesture except when he decides to do it in public (for example, on a crowded train).

The heat also gives me "summer itch" on my arms (which is not to be confused with "winter itch" which I get on my legs). I'm not even sure how DH stays attracted to me.

It's been unseasonably hot here the past few days; though, I've been trying to keep my cranky thoughts to myself. I did get out on Saturday and drove a few towns over to visit one of my favorite independent bookstores. I begged the lady behind the counter for a cup of water because I was so sweaty and started to get dizzy (the heat does not mix well with my pain medication either).

After that, I went to the town green and caned my way up to the shade of some cherry trees. That part was nice, especially since I had acquired a cold lemonade along the way.

Monday, I went to see Blue for a stimulator adjustment. Most of my programs weren't quite cutting the mustard and the one program I was using was also causing me to experience stimulation in my abdomen. That's one downside to neurostimulation. It's often the case that numbing the painful parts also means numbing non-painful parts (and I say "numbing" because that's what the stimulation feels like to me). This can't be helped given that so many nerves are in close proximity with one another.

I was also worried that one of my leads had shifted, as I've been having this poky feeling. Blue said there was no indication from her computer that this was the case. Big relief on that one. She took a peak at the spot and mentioned it might be the edge of the paddle moving around but said as long as it isn't hurting then it's probably ok. She thought I could go see Dr. A for an x-ray but I'm totally not going to do that because I'm just not. For now, at least.

When Blue and I were working on my adjustment, Dr. R came in. He was the one I didn't choose to do my surgery even though he did my trial procedures. It was kind of awkward. I got that feeling I get when my hair-dresser figures out that I had highlights done by someone else. We engaged in a little awkward banter, my upper lip started to sweat (yes, I also sweat when I'm nervous), and my face turned red. It was awesome. But then he left and Blue and I got back to talking about canine nutrition.

I left the appointment with 7 new programs and, so far, I think they're better than what I had. Yesterday, I noticed I didn't take as much morphine sulfate for break-thru pain. I don't want to get ahead of myself because I don't want to deal with disappointment. At the very least, I can say that yesterday was better than the day before.

Now, on to my public service announcement of the week. If you have a stimulator, don't hesitate to go in for a program adjustment whenever you think it's necessary. I've started to view adjustments the same way I view medication tweaks. It takes a little bit of work and nuance but it's just part of being on long-term medication. It's the same with neurostimulation. And don't be afraid to be a total pest to your stimulator rep. (seriously, I advocate full on stalking mode until you are able to get an appointment for an adjustment).

And that concludes this post. Besides, I have to go blot my upper lip.

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