Thursday, July 02, 2009

Oh My Aching Back

Just what I need, a back-ache!

That masseuse who tossed me around in Phitsanulok in upper Thailand last week seems to have been overly enthusiastic, as my lower back was sort of generally tender next morning, but nothing specific. Two more massages did not help that inchoate aching sensation.

Then on Saturday I went for a bike-ride. The nose-less seat, which presumably means my sperm is in better condition than most bike-riders, tends to throw me a bit forward, so I have an elevated goose-neck thingie to raise the handlebars. However, maybe it's not enough, as my back-ache seemed to have increased to something more of a nuisance after the ride, without being actually debilitating.

As this hadn't gone away by Tuesday evening, while watching the final episodes of Battle-Star Gallactica on DVD with Indy (which is probably why he is feeling a bit down) I stuck some electrodes onto my lower back as I used my foot stimulating machine, which I am using to see if it makes a difference to my peripheral neuropathy and chronic foot pain. The stims to my lower back went on for 30mins and I had them turned up reasonably high. A few hours later, at the end of the episodes, when I tried to sit up, bang, OW, that's not right!

I popped into a hot bath that evening, rubbed Voltarin gel onto the region afterwards and took some anti-inflammatories.

The right things to do I believe, but next morning I could hardly move. Well, it was more of a CHANGE thing. I could move if I was already walking. It was just turning or sitting up or lying down.... in fact any change in position or body posture seemed to exacerbate the pain and cause the stiffness to cramp up even worse. No shooting sciatic pains. It was all in the muscles by the spine.

I stayed in bed for the rest of the morning and went to the physio in the afternoon. Are all Expat physios tall, blonde Australians? I know about six and they are all freaky the same, male or female. Anyway, she had did this pressure assessment/treatment where she pushed in hard to my para-spinal muscles. Initially that felt really tight as she poked, then the muscles gradually softened, sort of gelled or melted and it felt like the tightness was flowing away, amazing, and soon I could not feel her pressure at all, even though she was maintaining the same effort. She did it again and again. That was the muscle initially in spasm and then letting go, she said. Eventually it was softer, even when she first pushed in.

She tried to loosen up the muscles around each vertebra as well, as they were terribly locked, she said, due to the muscle spasms and not allowing me to rotate, or if I did, except somewhat asymmetrically,

So more anti-inflammatories, more Voltarin gel, more bed-rest (easy enough thanks to another change in neuropathy meds making me sleepy) and today, this afternoon at least, it's much better thanks. No perfect, but better.

But that weird gellification sensation of the muscle softening as she pressed in was basically what I wanted to share.

Back to see her on Monday.


Also, my left ear-tube is sore, sort of swollen. Maybe I scratched it with the plug of my pod-type head-phones. Now there is a continual ringing going on and it ain't the phone... Ear infection?

Fuck, I'm falling apart.



Lost in Melbourne said...

Phil, this tale of woe is the strong motivation I used to get back into a daily workout after getting over the flu.

Keep on with the gentle increase in exercise. Modern living just isn't good for you.

savannah said...

you poor dear man, but, like scott, yours is a cautionary tale for me as well! i hope you start to feel better soon, sugarpie! xoxox

Dick Headley said...

I throw my back out from time to time. Lifting things usually does it. Sometimes I can't even get up and just getting my pants on takes all day. Rest is the only thing that works for me but I might try blogging next time. A fellow sufferer.

Unknown said...

Thought of you on Friday when I got a special brand of pain under my left rib cage towards me back. The kind that takes your breath away like a good hoovering will. Too late to visit the GP and wouldn't have been able to get a scan before Monday so I just toughed it out Friday and Saturday with opiates and lots of water since. Methinks kidney stone.

Hmmm...I'm on the bad side of 40 so perhaps my guarantee is up too.

expat@large said...

Jay: why would you think of me when you have renal colic? I haven't had or blogged about that sort of pain since I was in Cairo last year. THe CT I had in Australia (free for tourists) four years ago showed three tiny ones still there. Opiates and water is the preferred treatment, isn't it Rockstar? You don't want the tubes and stents if you can avoid it (no pun intended).

Creepy said...

Back problems are proof to me human beings are outliving their intended life expentency.

expat@large said...

And anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxants and paracetamol keep THIS humane bean going past its use-by date. Actually given the wickedly infirm patriarchs contained in my family's medical history, 57 is the age beyond which none of the E@L forebears pass easily. D-day minus 5.

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