Thought I’d try to catch up a little bit today.
Overall, Pam has been doing a little bit better. The pain specialist has been working for over a year to find the right combination of meds for her. Finally, I think we have something. He’s managed to narrow it down to two meds. She has several conditions which we’ve managed to get a grip on over the last 4-6 months of evaluation. Each condition seems to have its own type of pain. Some of the types of pain she suffers from is neuropathic pain, radiculopathy and fibromyalgia all of which are relieved with Topiramate (brand name Topamax). He also needs to use a narcotic agent (unfortunately) to manage some of the other types of pain.
So, overall, we see some mild improvement. But, low and behold! After much protesting from me, last week she decided to go outside to get the mail. Yep, she slipped on the snow and ice in the driveway and fell on her knee! Gosh! How could I turn around and say, "I told you so." Well, I did, but only several days later when the time was right. Smile, smile.
Because of her osteoporosis, she has a 5-6X risk of bone fractures. I saw her go down and immediately pictured in my head of having to call an ambulance. Fortunately, she was able to get up. Needless to say, she is sore and bruised all over with a big ‘egg’ on her knee! I did take her for evaluation and no fractures!! But it sure doesn’t help deal with Mr. Arthur in her knee which many of us also have.
Some of my latest thoughts and insights have to do with language difficulty — expression and word finding.
difficulty finding the right words. I can remember a long medical terminology word but can’t always retrieve a simple word such as sofa, fork, etc.
I tend to use descriptions in place of words “that thing behind the house you sit on" instead of “patio or back porch”). Recently I couldn’t remember the word "fork" so I resorted to saying, "You know, that thing you stab into food."
occasionally have difficulty with some pronunciation; familiar words don’t sound right
sentences don’t sound right or are phrased incorrectly (don’t make sense)
have difficulty explaining a thought or idea
I rely on Pam and Chad to guess at the meaning of what I am trying to say
very frustrating when I have trouble say what I mean
Now I have a lot of trouble talking on the telephone unless it’s someone I know very well or from many years ago. I think part of it is that there are visual cues over the telephone.
One of the descriptions I was able to use with Pam recently was this. At times, whenever a word won’t come, it’s as though I can picture a long tunnel starting at the front of my head progressing to the back of my head. The tunnel gets more narrow and blacker as it goes to the back. At the back, sometimes there is nothing there, thus no word.
At other times, there is a vague dot or small object or small word which is incomprehensible. Sometimes I can visualize it slowly coming to the front of the tunnel. How far it comes up seems to determine whether I get the ‘word.’ Sometimes, I literally pause and wait for "it" to come forth. Sometimes, it will only come half way and then stops. This is actually more frustrating than if it is just totally blocked. Other times, it all comes forward with the right word but in "slow motion." That’s when I find myself talking and literally saying, "wait a minute." I just need some time for it to crawl up.
It seems very hard to describe all this. If someone can’t follow what I just said, I totally understand.
Enough for today. Just thought I’d share my perspective on word finding.