Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Wait and See, huh?

Like any good 21st century citizen with a medical condition, when I have a question or concern I ask the internet. Lately the focus of my searching is the treatment of spasticity (This is the involuntary contraction and rigidity of muscles-- in my case, many of the large muscles below the waist).

So, what have I learned? Compared to most people with spinal cord injuries, my spasticity is quite mild. The big problem with mine is that the rigidity, discomfort and weakness it causes limit almost everything I do. It's the main reason I can't walk very far and can't sit or stand for very long.

What else have I learned? Almost everything I do: walking, standing, sitting, exercising, stretching, not stretching, not exercising... actually causes increased spasticity. But then, I already kind of suspected that.

So what to do about it? The information I've found tells me that medication helps-- I take baclofen which inhibits the action of the muscles. The problem is, when I take enough of it to relax the muscles, I'm rendered weak and unable to think clearly-- a bad trade-off.

One of the most memorable treatment options I came across was essentially, "wait and see what happens."

Really now... I was hoping for something a bit more interactive.


Anonymous said...

Hi Robb,

I need to tread lightly here since I cannot under any circumstances render anything that smells of a medical opinion.

So, I'm not giving you a medical opinion. I'm just one letterboxer telling another letterboxer that if you were to go to a database called PubMed and do a little digging, you'd find some references on spasticity in spinal cord injuries and even some articles that compare the efficacy of various therapies. Such as the following

Taricco M, Pagliacci MC, Telaro E, Adone R. Related Articles, Links
Pharmacological interventions for spasticity following spinal cord injury: results of a Cochrane systematic review.
Eura Medicophys. 2006 Mar;42(1):5-15. Review.
PMID: 16565680 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

This is just information for your edification that you may choose to discuss with your neurologist, since you are not happy with the oral baclofen.

Happy researching! If you want more help with your research project from a fellow letterboxer, your better half knows how to contact me offline. I'll be busy tending my avian smorgasbord.


Lock Wench said...

Ummm..I would like to comment on everything you said, but I was distracted by that look. *sigh* Lisa, you've got your own McDreamy.


Anonymous said...

How about McSceney?


Anonymous said...

Hey Robb:

Robbi H. called me recently to tell me about your accident. For what it is worth, I think you and Lisa are pretty amazing. As I remember, you were always quite good at mastering whatever you set your mind to.

The Patchogue-Medford crowd is really rooting for you. And seriously, how is that you still look exactly as you did in High School?

I'm wishing you, Lisa and your family all the best.

Andrea K.

p.s. What is letterboxing? Is it just keeping a blog?


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