health, personal

Ortho Updates

Last Friday, I graduated. Well, I still have to finish my thesis in order to graduate from my MFA course but at least I graduated from my physical therapy sessions. I was evaluated by my orthopedic surgeon and this is what he had to say:

– I still have sore pressure points (“lamig” according to hilots)

– I cannot carry over ten pounds of weight

– I need a laptop for work and a laptop at home because I cannot use netbooks (I use graphics software like Maya). Even most ultrabooks cannot handle full-on graphics, using Intel HD 400 graphics card instead of NVIDIA ones.

– Carrying heavy weights can aggravate my bulging disc and may then result to a slipped disc.

– I should go for a sort of massage therapy that makes use of hot stones. (I’m a bit excited about this.)

– I may opt to continue my physical therapy sessions.

Anyway, that’s all for now. My family will be off to church in a bit.


Back Updates

Last Saturday, I got checked by my neurosurgeon again. She offered to increase the dosage of my pain medication. It was tempting, really, but I said “no”. She was surprised because her job was to ensure that I feel zero pain. I explained that I want to be able to honestly answer my orthopedic surgeon whenever he asks if I feel any pain after a certain strengthening exercise.


Pain is not the disease. It is a symptom. I want to hold on to that symptom so that I could be aware of what is going on inside of me. I have two 4 cm. Tarlov cysts that are being monitored. The neurosurgeon will only operate on me if the cysts are damaging my nerves (a possibility when they grow? any Tarlov cysts sufferers out there?). At the moment, they are eroding my bones. This is actually minor compared to the complicated surgery that it will take to remove them. The neurosurgeon has said as much that reconstructing the spinal sheath after cyst removal will be difficult. That is not exactly a comforting thought.

I am finished with my physical therapy sessions. I miss them because they make me feel rested. Now that I am working full time as a multimedia instructor, I wake up and go to sleep in pain. The comfort that this gives me, though, is the fact that my nerves are fully awake and working. They are not damaged. I am alive and feeling everything with full intensity.