Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Week 2 from Baseline

Today was my second visit to K, and second treatment of Adalimumab. Fortuantely this time, I actually got the needle of the syringe past the skin on the first attempt and avoided a repeat of the first awkward attempt.

The survey I needed to complete today was only 6 or 7 pages long and I ripped through it fairly quickly. My CO said some of the survey questions were a little on the subjective side and she would be right. Many of them are terribly subjective.

Here's an example.

Have you experienced any pain in the last week? Place a vertical line below crossing the horizontal line.

0 ------------------------------------------------------------------ 100

Some questions specifically mention pain that is related to SpA. Some questions don't. So let's go with the theory that since this quesion is looking for the patient to report any pain. So do you include everything? If I kicked a door and hurt my toe should I mention it here? It is seemingly irrelevant don't you think? But they did ask for "any" pain. Going with the kicking the door theory for a bit longer, do I rate it at 100 because it hurt like a bitch the moment I did it, or a lower score marking the general soreness an hour later? Do you see what I mean? Am I over thinking it?

But what about the questions asking for pain that is related to SpA? Surely they are easier to answer? Well, you might think so but you would be wrong. Sure, evaluating my hip is very easy. After all, there is nothing else wrong with my hip. If I am in pain, the arthritis is the cause. If I am not, then the arthritis is under control in those joins. Simple!

But what about my ankle?

My ankle has sustained 2 traumas and two surgeries all in the last 6 years. Putting aside arthritis for a moment, no ankle will be working as well as it once did under those conditions. How do I know which pain is from my arthritis condition and which pain is due to the fact that if you were to peel back the skin covering the lateral side of my ankle all you would see is spaghetti? I could give you a long list of different sensations I get regularly or irregulary in my ankle. Which of those are SpA and how the fuck am I supposed to know?

Since this question did not refer to SpA at all, I gave it a nice big score given that I'd spent part of yesterday with a killer headache.

Yet another blood test. I guess I'm up for these each visit. The joint assessment from flames revealed identical results to my baseline visit. Apparently, there is still swelling in my right elbow. I must remember to bring this up with The General next time I see him given the fact that I have never ever had any problems with either of my elbows. Oh wait. I smashed my left elbow joint when I was six when I fell of the monkey bars at primary cchool. It was pinned and plated. Somehow, it is still perfect. Aside from a scar, there is no other evidence that it ever occured. But the swelling is in the other elbow. Go figure!

This time, I manage to inject myself without flinching and for some reason, I didn't hurt nearly as much. I am told that next time, I get presents.


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