The OF Blog: Back "procedures" suck, in case you never knew that

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Back "procedures" suck, in case you never knew that

Well, after enduring six weeks of often excruciating back pain after initially injuring myself at work trying to keep a 6'5, 230 lb. young adult resident from running out of the room, I finally had a procedure done this morning to alleviate the pain.  It took nearly five weeks for the muscle spasms and strained muscles in my lower lumbar region of my spine (or about two inches above my waist/tailbone) to ease enough for there to be clear signs that I also had some nerve irritation.  Had an MRI done on Monday and it revealed some damage to one of my vertebral discs. 

It wasn't so serious that I needed back surgery, but it was bad enough that I was recommended to get an epidural steroid injection directly into that region of my spine.  So I had that done today.  One of the effects of the injection is that the numbing agent gets into your system, making your lower body number, making it unsafe to drive for any long length of time (not to mention it feels like you have your drunk legs all day).  This, however, does not stop the actual pressure pain from the injection site, which I was told can take up to four days before it is alleviated.  Thankfully, I did have some prescribed painkillers to help me endure this, even though this led to nearly a full night's night this afternoon.

On the bright side, before I was knocked out (much of this was done during the 45 minute drives to and from the clinic, along with the 30 minute wait at the clinic), I did manage to finish reading four recent releases that I hope to review in the next 3-4 days.  I read three National Book Award-longlisted books (John Darnielle's Wolf in White Van; Elizabeth McCracken's Thunderstruck & Other Stories; and Gail Giles's Girls Like Us (YPL nominee) as well as Kelly Barnhill's The Witch's Boy.  Each of these were distinct in their prose and thematic approach and each will be receiving positive reviews whenever I have the time/mental focus to write them.

But for now, it's time to clear up this mental fog and see if the pain will subside some when I begin walking more next week (not to mention returning to work on Monday after a month's absence).  I'm past tired of sitting around the house not being able to do much else other than read and write reviews.


Rochita said...

Ouch. I hope you get well soon, Larry. Looking forward to reading more of your reviews.

Larry Nolen said...

Thanks! I will probably start writing them regularly again next week, as I have a backlog of around a dozen to write. I know in November that I'll be announcing plans to write at least one review each day for the month, to be a sort of reviewer's answer to that annual write a novel in a month.

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