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March 7, 2013

PSA II
Posted by Patrick at 09:59 PM * 155 comments

I am now mostly back on the job at Tor. Except not tomorrow. Spare a thought for TNH, who goes in at 10 AM EST for surgery to reconstruct her several-ways-abused left foot. I’ll be with her, or nearby, throughout.

It’s not actually a gigantic medical deal in the greater scheme of things, but FOOT. KNIVES. BONE. Ay yi! Wish us well.

Comments on PSA II:
#1 ::: skzb ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:14 PM:

Oh, yes. Very much wishing you well. I know you'll have other things on your mind, but if you could get someone to post here once you know something, that would be nice. Teresa, I'll be thinking about you.

#2 ::: sussura ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:20 PM:

Speedy recovery, Teresa! We will be thinking of you.

#3 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:24 PM:

Ouch. Best wishes for a recovery so uneventful as to be BORING.

#4 ::: Jim Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:24 PM:

Best of luck.

Good drugs!

#5 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:24 PM:

Thinking good things about Teresa and her foot. (I've had foot surgery of a different kind. Didn't involve bones, but was still something not to be wished on others.)

#6 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:25 PM:

I faithfully promise to not try anything exciting or unusual.

#7 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:30 PM:

Sending every good wish. Recommending manual lymphatic drainage post-surgery (in Europe, they've found it shortens the healing time considerably). The Wikipedia article on MLD cites a 2009 study showing efficacy around muscular damage and broken bones, if you need to convince your doctors.

#8 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:30 PM:

As Warren Zevon put it:

Don't let us get sick
Don't let us get old
Don't let us get stupid, all right?
Just make us be brave
And make us play nice
And let us be together tonight

#10 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:36 PM:

Best wishes for a speedy and uneventful recovery!

#11 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:41 PM:

I hope the surgery goes well and that the recovery is swift.

If you need something to distract you, watch this:

http://www.wimp.com/kangarooboxes/

#12 ::: Michael Walsh ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:41 PM:

If it's not one thing ... jeeze.

Anyway, get better/well/etc soon!

#13 ::: edward oleander ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:44 PM:

Glad you're feeling better! I can empathize with Teresa, having had multiple family members (including myself)who have experienced foot meeting knife, and saw, and drill, and wall anchor.

If I can be of any long-distance assistance, call/FB anytime! Good luck tomorrow!

#14 ::: Mary Dell ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:51 PM:

Wishing Teresa's feet maximal health and minimal pain. Also unhurrying chase, unperturbèd pace, deliberate speed and majestic instancy.

#15 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 10:55 PM:

Stefan, that's a unicorn chaser for sure. Thank you.

Edward Oleander, please tell me the wall anchor was used in a wall.

#16 ::: Mary Frances ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 11:09 PM:

Well wishes sent. Good thoughts being held.

#17 ::: D. Potter ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 11:19 PM:

Sending HealingThoughts and virtual tea.

#18 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 11:29 PM:

I already have the red and gold spray paint ready for my moon boot.

#19 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 11:32 PM:

Mes meilleurs voeux à vous deux...
My best wishes to the two of you...

#20 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 11:40 PM:

Oy. Good luck and swift healing!

#21 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: March 07, 2013, 11:53 PM:

Best wishes.

#22 ::: janetl ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 12:05 AM:

Teresa Nielsen Hayden @ 18: Oh, that's an excellent idea! May your boot be lovely!
I recently bought a small can of gold spray paint for a very small project - turning a few red bells into gold ones. That leaves me with most of a can of gold spray paint, and I fear that nothing in the house is safe.

#23 ::: KayTei ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 12:13 AM:

Quick healing to you both!

#24 ::: elise ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 12:39 AM:

Of *course* you are ornamenting your moon boot, Teresa. There are standards that must be maintained! Hee!

I send you large good wishes, big hugs, and a chorus of either that Warren Zevon song, or "Oppan Hamster Style," whichever would amuse you most at the moment. Also enclosed are a bundle of comfort-and-support good wishes for Patrick.

#25 ::: Steve Halter ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 01:28 AM:

Best of luck.

#26 ::: Anne Sheller ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 01:28 AM:

Hoping all goes well and healing is swift. Exciting and unusual is OK so long as putting weight on the foot is not involved.

#27 ::: Benjamin Wolfe ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 01:39 AM:

elise, you nearly made me irrigate my monitor! Oppan hamster style indeed!

TNH, best wishes for a quick and uneventful recovery.

#28 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 02:06 AM:

Here's to swift healing of the foot, steady hands on the doctors, and good painkillers for the interim between the two.

#29 ::: Brooks Moses ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 02:16 AM:

Dee da dee ba do do, dee ba de de doo! *insert gifs of hamsters here*

(And now I have that song stuck in my head, but I also found out that it's a sped-up clip from the 1973 Disney animated Robin Hood movie. Specifically, the song "Whistle Stop" by Roger Miller, which is findable on YouTube and a bit trippy if one's only familiar with the hamster version.)

#30 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 02:38 AM:

I'm glad you're well enough to go ahead with the surgery; I was wondering & worrying.

As others have said, be of good cheer and courage, both of you. Sterkte. We'll be waiting in the virtual recovery room.

#31 ::: Niall McAuley ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 03:43 AM:

All the best with the foot.

You know how people give out about not having a flying car or a personal jetpack yet?

What I miss from that future is a scene in The Iron Thorn by Algis Budrys, where our hero (a primitive survivor in an alien desert) comes across what is clearly a high-tech outpost. Inside, the machines are able to painlessly and bloodlessly separate his hand into components, fix it, and glue the tissues back together without a trace, before his eyes. Sigh.

#32 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 04:09 AM:

Best wishes for an excellent anaesthetist, successful surgery, and speedy recovery.

We expect to see evidence of the red-and-gold decorated moon boot...

#33 ::: Alan Braggins ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 07:01 AM:

Best wishes for recovery

#34 ::: Jo Walton ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 07:30 AM:

Hope it all goes really smoothly.

(And according to that Peter Dickinson story, it's if you'd started to sprout pinfeathers from your ankles that you'd really have to worry.)

#35 ::: Michael Weholt ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 08:26 AM:

May all your arch villains be thoroughly defeated.

#36 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 08:33 AM:

All the best to TNH. I hope it goes well.

#37 ::: Ken Houghton ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 08:44 AM:

What Everyone Else Said: safe surgery, good recovery.

When you have recovered, auction off the boot--probably then in two pieces--for the SFWA Emergency Medical Fund.

#38 ::: Kip W ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 08:54 AM:

Wishing you the best healers and (as has been said) a mildly boring and uneventfully swift recovery. May the whole incident only come to mind when you are idly wiggling your toes, and then as a far-away event of mild interest.

Feet, man. How do they work?

#39 ::: MNiM ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 08:55 AM:

Good luck! Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

#40 ::: Kip W, gnomed again ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 08:59 AM:

Oh, sure: I toe the line with good wishes that get the boot, while sole-killing puns walk right in.

But enough metacarping. Best wishes for a smooth, upward-pointing line on the wellness graph.

#41 ::: Kevin J. Maroney ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 09:21 AM:

Like "clean coal", "minor surgery" is an obfuscation that covers a lie. I hope your recovery is swift and complete.

#42 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 10:04 AM:

Good luck, T.! I'm sure it will go well, and that the results will be excellent.

I'll be thinking of you today.

#43 ::: Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 10:15 AM:

TNH! Come through nicely, please. You are irreplaceable.

That said, I had foot surgery two years ago (knives, bones, saw *!*, foot) and have lived to walk again. Follow the post-op instructions, and remember that if you're on crutches, you're down both hands as well as a foot. For some reason this came as a huge surprise to me.

#44 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 10:58 AM:

Best wishes for a safe and easy time of it.

#45 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:01 AM:

Kip:

#39 is quite amusing, but your choice of the word "wellness" is ill-considered.

I am a grumpy old man on this point. Why do people say "wellness" when "health" serves perfectly wellly?

#46 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:01 AM:

The fact that the human foot has 26 bones is almost as good an argument against the existence of God as the Babel Fish.

#47 ::: albatross ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:07 AM:

Yikes! I hope everything goes well.

#48 ::: Priscilla King ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:35 AM:

Well-wishes...prayers...healing light...

#49 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:53 AM:

Best wishes, and candles lit, and energy sent -- may your surgery and healing be swift and uneventful.

#50 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:59 AM:

Brooks Moses, re: "Whistle Stop"

If you whistle that one in the grocery store, it's fun to watch which adults react to it -- you can tell who has shown their little ones Disney's "Robin Hood."

#51 ::: Cally Soukup ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 12:02 PM:

Best wishes for a fast and thorough recovery! And for as few annoyances for both of you as possible in the meantime!

#52 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 12:24 PM:

Best wishes, warm thoughts, prayers, and duck feet.

You do like duck feet, right? Ah well, if not, more for me!!

#53 ::: Ginger ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 01:55 PM:

I can't believe no one has yet promised to offer up prayers for your sole.

Best wishes for a successful surgery and rapid recovery!

#54 ::: David Weingart ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 02:06 PM:

Ginger @52, OUCH! :D

But I'll add my good wishes for a speedy recovery to the pile

#55 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 02:26 PM:

PNH has just tweeted that TNH is out of surgery and full of Percocet. Yay!

#56 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 03:07 PM:

Good news! Let's hope everything goes smoothly from here.

#57 ::: Pamela Dean ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 03:41 PM:

Best of luck to both of you. I am sure all will be well in the long run. May the short run be as free of petty annoyance as possible.

P.

#58 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 03:41 PM:

Bright blessings for a speedy, low-pain recovery, AIBYOW, Teresa!

#59 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 05:22 PM:

ObHamsterdance:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hh4_gKpSfN4

(Found while looking for Whistle Stop.)

Wishing you a speedy and pain-free recovery.

#60 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 06:42 PM:

Glad to hear (@54) that the operation went well. Here's hoping for a smooth and speedy recovery!

#61 ::: Melissa Mead ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 10:28 PM:

Get well soon!

#62 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 10:41 PM:

thank you.

i am typing one-handed, at arm's length.

i fall asleep and wake up again every few minutes.

i can type one or two sentences each time.

maybe i'm a twitter app.

#63 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 10:44 PM:

how do you say 'i have been eaten by gnomes' in middle english?

[Gnomes han me eten. -- Roiero Biresix, Duty Gnome]

#64 ::: Randolph ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2013, 11:56 PM:

Yeep! Sympathies.

#65 ::: Lenny Bailes ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 12:03 AM:

gnomenclatur will return, I trust, in a bit.

#66 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 12:29 AM:

Good to see you posting!

#67 ::: janeyolen ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 06:24 AM:

Hugs for quick and pain free recovery. Or as quick and as pain free as is humanly possible.

You will be dancing soon.

xxxJane

#68 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 07:14 AM:

patrick was having sympathetic pain in his left foot last night, esp, the big toe, which came in for a lot of surgical attention.

it is a weird thing to feel sentimental about, but i do.

#69 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 08:49 AM:

Teresa @ 67... Have love and concern been making Patrick say things in a way that is not tarse?

#70 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 09:42 AM:

Teresa's foot is getting better, but Patrick
has pain in his foot; any more will make hat-trick.

Wow-it's not easy writing choliambics.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scazon

But it seems like the obligatory meter for the occasion.

#71 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 10:05 AM:

I hope today brings improvement in your rehabbed foot.

#72 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 11:42 AM:

In fact, today is shaping up as the point at which we find out just how difficult this is all going to be. Starting with the massive allergic reaction to the post-op antibiotic that had me sprinting to the drugstore for Benadryl. Yikes.

Right now she's is pretty completely helpless and liable to continue so for several days at least. I have no idea how we're going to deal when I have to go back to work at the end of the weekend.

#73 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 11:45 AM:

Well damn. Wish I were up there, or y'all were down here.

#74 ::: Jim Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 12:56 PM:

Consider Chlor-Trimeton in addition to or in place of Benedryl.

For genuine health-care advice consult a licensed health-care professional who can diagnose and prescribe.

#75 ::: janetl ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 02:26 PM:

Yikes on the massive allergic reaction to the antibiotic! I hope someone can rally round to help on Monday.

It appears that pain-killing opiates all make me itch, which is annoying, but some Benedryl handles it while just making me even more loopy.

#76 ::: Bruce E. Durocher II ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 03:13 PM:

Benedryl can give me Wandering Leg Syndrome. (If you don't have it you really don't want to know anything beyond it being uncomfortable and for those who have it without Benedryl it is incurable.) Which is why, when they have to give it to me it's through an IV, where they can spread it out enough that it doesn't give my limbs fits.

#77 ::: eep ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 03:50 PM:

Sympathies, and wishes for a recovery free from further complications, plus a swift recovery from the present complications, too.

#78 ::: Teka Lynn ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 04:09 PM:

Good luck, heal well, and get well soon!

#79 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 05:01 PM:

augmentin. i've been prescribed it for decades as occasion demanded. today it gave me hives, and stomach and abdominal cramping. that was at the outset. grayed-out vision and diff breathing started while patrick was off to the drugstore.

we were unhappy campers.

the hours following were predictable: take one narcoleptic; stuff with hydrocodone and benadryl. cover with dust cloth and go about your business.

the hives still itch. the consumer info pamphlet doesn't say how long it takes to get one augmentin out of your system.

#80 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 05:20 PM:

They probably haven't done much experimenting with that, T. You might be able to give them a data point. (Wow -- crowdsourcing side-effect information. There outta be a website....)

#81 ::: Jim Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 05:22 PM:

Augmentin is amoxicillin plus clavulanic acid.

The half-life of clavulanic acid is one hour. The half-life of amoxicillin is 1.3 hours.

#82 ::: StochasticBird ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 05:30 PM:

The hypersensitivity reaction to the amoxicillin is going to last an unpredictable amount longer, though. As a vet, if someone called me about a pet who'd had difficulty breathing or still had hives, I'd have them in the hospital pronto. If human medicine is different, I'd be both surprised and somewhat dismayed.

#83 ::: skzb ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 05:39 PM:

Gaaah. Reaction to antibiotics is ALL you need. Grumble. I'm going to write a pretty sharp letter about it.

Thinking healful thoughts.

#84 ::: Allan Beatty ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 06:05 PM:

Augmentin is amoxicillin plus clavulanic acid. Better known at our household as Clavamox, i.e. pet antibiotics.

#85 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 07:30 PM:

Having difficulty breathing ups the ante on that reaction. My personal feeling is that puts it at the top of a 'Do. Not. Want.' list.

#86 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 07:59 PM:

TNH: Eek!

I shall to the chirurgeon on Monday. He telleth me that the aftermath shall be a week of pain. This thing of eld, 'tis not for the faint of heart.

Yet have I planned, for my time of easement, to compose some two or three thousand words on the arcana of the Antilles.

#87 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 08:06 PM:

Fragano: best wishes. Feel free NOT to emulate Miss Teresa's woeful tale!

#88 ::: Dave Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 08:57 PM:

Still wishing TNH good luck, and now Fragano too.

#89 ::: edward oleander ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 09:42 PM:

Are the reaction symptoms better? If you're not seeing steady recovery, especially your breathing, it's time to jingle up the on-call MD. Keep a close watch on your pulse (and BP if you have a cuff). When I went allergic to the 'cillins, it took two days for the effects to go away, but they weren't as severe as yours. If your stomach is still upset, good old Pepto Bismol works well to help (the generics come in caplets now - no more yucky taste!).

ps: The wall anchor is in my heel. They needed something to sew my Achilles to. I did get to push myself about on a totally cool little kneelie scooter for a few months, so there was childlike upside to the deal. Will you get a scooter too?

pps: Can we do a foot surgery panel at 4th Street someday? We can have a scar contest, and tell stories to see who can make the most people flee in horror!

ppss: Serious about calling the doc if things aren't a LOT better by now. {{{hug!}}}

#90 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 09:57 PM:

In other news, TNH was trying to remember the word "Benadryl" and zeroed in on it through successive approximation: "Blavatsky. Banana. Benadryl."

HOW DID SHE KNOW THE NAME OF MY NEXT...never mind.

Time for unconsciousness. Enjoy the Night with One Fewer Hours, all you North Americans.

#91 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 10:07 PM:

I never had any trouble tolerating Amoxycillin, but Augmentin gave me really bad gastric effects the one time it was prescribed -- for an infection by bacteria resistant to Amoxycillin. It was all gastric, though, nothing respiratory and no hives.

Continued best wishes to both of you.

#92 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2013, 10:51 PM:

edward oleander writes: pps: Can we do a foot surgery panel at 4th Street someday? We can have a scar contest, and tell stories to see who can make the most people flee in horror!

If you do, can I come read a Certain Chapter of "Silently, Invisibly"? (big evil grin)

#93 ::: edward oleander ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 12:38 AM:

I'll see if I can figure out which one. I'm discovering a love of all things Avengers, including fanfic. Late to the party, as usual, but liking this story so far. Now I'll be up all night, and it's your fault! Ppphhtt! ;-)

#94 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 01:10 AM:

Fragano @ 86... I planned, for my time of easement, to compose some two or three thousand words on the arcana of the Antilles.

Fanfic about Star Wars's Captain Antilles?
(For whom works Bosun Jamaïque)

My best wishes with the surgery.

#95 ::: Serge Broom has been GNOMED ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 01:12 AM:

I have cheap chips and ketchup for the degnominator.

#96 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 01:16 AM:

Serge, that's a low, common degnominator.

#97 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 03:03 AM:

Teresa, #79: I had that happen to me with penicillin when I was a teenager. Had taken it many times with no trouble, and then suddenly I got hypersensitive skin all over, to the point that wearing clothing was uncomfortable -- like a really bad sunburn, but no hives, itching, or rash. My mother called the doctor, who said STOP NOW and never, ever take it again. And I never have, although modern derivatives don't give me any trouble.

#98 ::: Dave Bell ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 05:11 AM:

Serge @94 (and Fragano)

I might even read that.

I am coming up with some dreadful puns about the Virgin Islands and naval personnel of limited intelligence. I hope I don't need to explain.

#99 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 07:52 AM:

Xopher @ #96: GROAN.

Various, re allergies: my sister, after having weathered a good many bee stings without incident over the course of her first five decades or so, got just one more sting and abruptly developed a severe bee-sting allergy (breathing problems, face swelling, fast trip to the ER). She had to carry an epi-pen for several months while undergoing desensitization treatments. The immune system is WEIRD.

edward oleander @ #93, chapter 18, and to a lesser extent, ch. 20. And I'm glad you're enjoying it.

#100 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 12:31 PM:

Lila, I think I know what chapter that is.

Edward Oleander, there's a regular on Making Light who can top any foot surgery story we have to tell. I'll leave it to her to decide whether she wants to talk about it.

Thank you for the very useful information about the sudden onset of penicillin allergies. Now I know I'm not waiting for the Augmentin to clear out; I'm waiting for the histamine reaction to calm down. I gather I'm off all penicillin derivatives forevermore?

It's welcome to do so any time now. My hands are still so puffed-up that they have no wrinkles in them, and my knuckles are pits instead of bumps. Needless to say, they itch abominably.

Bob, gastrointestinal upsets are Augmentin's chief side effect. My esophagus is still loosening up after yesterday's paroxysms. For a while there, it was a struggle to get water down.

Seriously, I did not need that. It was an awful day.

#101 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 12:34 PM:

@TNH & PNH, I hope today is better!

#102 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 12:52 PM:

Sorry to read that you are still recovering from the histamine reaction, Teresa, but nice to see you approximating your usual mentally coherent self. (Perhaps it took you far longer to write that comment than it would have last Thursday (when of course you wouldn't have written it), but I'm glad that you again have the wherewithal to do so.)

#103 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 12:57 PM:

Fragano, good luck with your chirurgerical procedure. I should have sent good wishes along earlier, had I not believed that you were quoting some famous personal journal, well known to many here, but obscure to a blockhead like me.

#104 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 01:04 PM:

My penicillin reaction set in at the age of six, with anaphylactic shock (I don't recommend going that route).
It makes for an interestingly short list of available antibiotics.

#105 ::: Brooks Moses ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 02:12 PM:

I, likewise, had a penicillin reaction many years ago (while on a family vacation no less). One of the effects of it is that if there is a piece of bread in the house that has been neglected and gone green, I will get mild flu-like symptoms.

(There was a time in college when I was renting a single bedroom in a house, and thus using my closet both for clothes and food-pantry, and a loaf of bread fell behind something and got forgotten. The effect was quite clear!)

#106 ::: edward oleander ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 03:14 PM:

@Teresa, my reaction was similar to Lee's - couldn't stand the touch of clothing for two days, or even lay down. Afterwards, I was told to never again take anything with "cillin" in its name. Now it would appear I'm becoming allergic to the grandchildren of PCN, even those without the dreaded "cillin." YMMV, of course.

We will need a couple others for the Foot Surgery panel, so I hope she steps forward.

Keep tabs on vital signs until ALL symptoms are gone. Sometimes one can "re-react" to the metabolites created a couple or three days down the line.

@Lila, you're freaking psychic... That chapter is FAR more appropriate than I can describe here. Maybe we should do a Foot Surgery thread here (with appropriate warnings for those about to eat lunch). Let's just say, kinda sorta been there, done that, and need to play another round.

#107 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 03:36 PM:

Thanks to all for the good wishes.

Serge, please note that in Jamaica a bosun is a prison warder.

#108 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 05:52 PM:

TNH, I hope you get over the histamine reaction quickly. I trust you won't make the mistake I did when I had the...incident...with the hazelnuts some years ago, and took aspirin to reduce the swelling (it does, but it also aggravates the breathing symptoms).

#109 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 05:58 PM:

Lila 99: *bows*

#110 ::: patgreene ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 06:09 PM:

A most-of-the-time lurker coming out of the woodwork to wish you a speedy recovery, both for your foot and from your allergic reaction, Teresa.

And I hope things go smoothly for you, Fragano.

Back to the corner, now.

#111 ::: Zak ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 06:15 PM:

I recall at Viable Paradise you assured us that in the extraordinarily unlikely event that we'd made our fiction too exciting that you'd let us know.

Who do I complain to about the excitingness of your non-fiction? 'Cause histamine reactions really can just go away.

#112 ::: Paula Helm Murray ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 06:28 PM:

Miss Teresa, hope you are getting on better and the allergic symptoms are going away.

Hoping I am not the one with the foot surgery story... though if anyone wants to know, they can ask.

And I got to visit at lunch with my friend Chris, who had ankle fusion surgery about six weeks ago (car accident, her docs, various therapists and she have trying to fix it without surgery and was time to saddle up because it wasn't getting any better). She has one of the tricycle knee scooter things and is quite amazed with it. She is also having a doc visit Thursday in which she learns if she can start putting weight on it without getting scolded.

#113 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 08:14 PM:

Holy crap, this was a bad day.

#114 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 08:49 PM:

Here's hoping tomorrow is better for the both of you.

#115 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 08:57 PM:

edward @ #106, I cheated. (I wrote the story, and I knew Teresa had read it.)

Patrick and Teresa: virtual hugs if you want 'em, and a wish for a better day tomorrow.

#116 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 09:34 PM:

Fragano @ 107... Thanks for the information.

#117 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 09:35 PM:

Patrick @ 113... Sorry to hear.

#118 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 09:37 PM:

I hope tomorrow will be a better day. A MUCH better day.

#119 ::: estelendur ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 10:29 PM:

Leaving my best wishes for everyone (PNH, TNH, and Fragano) :(

(Also, Brooks Moses @105, I am allergic to amoxicillin, and yikes! *files information away*)

#120 ::: Lenny Bailes ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 10:56 PM:

Echoing the wishes that tomorrow will be better.

I've had a Penicillin allergy on my chart for all of my adult life, Erythromycin, too, since my ventricular hypertrophy diagnosis a few years ago. Clindomycin works for me, and Metronidazole for diverticulitis flare ups.

#121 ::: Lenny Bailes ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 11:00 PM:

Clindomycin->Clindamycin ....

#122 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 11:05 PM:

I wish I could come up with something more helpful than: I hope tonight is restful and tomorrow better.

#123 ::: edward oleander ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 11:13 PM:

@P & T - Ice and elevation for the foot, heat for the lower back that spasms because the foot gets propped up too long. Then keep the foot propped up some more. Stand up on the good leg 5 minutes every hour to rub some feeling back into your butt. Do some front, back and side lifts with the leg (within boundaries set by surgeon) to keep circulation in the leg stimulated...

I discovered once that really loud off-key singing can help distract from even excruciating pain. The MRI techs were professional enough not to complain.

BOTH of you keep up on pain meds. Stress breeds pain; I hurt all over after being live-in nurse for my mom after surgery. I've taken not only pain meds but mild muscles relaxers too... Ativan and Vistiril work well. Damn, I wish we lived closer.


@Lila - Mel guessed it was your story! I had it open in one window, and Google in another for references. I left a comment, but part got dropped. I thanked you for getting the medical aspects spot on (a huge issue for a nurse like me!)... It was well worth a night's sleep!

#124 ::: Velma ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2013, 11:20 PM:

We are thinking of you with love out here. (Soren goes to the pain management clinic tomorrow -- whee!)

#125 ::: Nancy Lebovitz ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 10:11 AM:

Very best wishes.

#126 ::: C. Wingate ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 11:57 AM:

Oy, you've really been going though the wringer here. Best wishes.

#127 ::: Laura ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 01:31 PM:

TNH - I hope today is a better day, by far.

Now for the bad news - about 5-10% of people who have an allergic reaction to the penicillin family also have allergic reactions to the other beta lactam antibiotics - cephalosporins, monobactams, and carbapenems. The tricky part is that it is only 5-10%, and some of these (cephalosporins) are sometimes the antibiotics of first resort, and some (carbapenems) are the antibiotics of last resort. What it means is that they will be very careful (TM) about any further beta lactam antibiotics, but they may use them sometime depending on what's in there.
Thinking of you with many well wishes.

#128 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 01:40 PM:

Teresa left some Tweets today. Sounded a bit better, but puzzled by the pin sticking out of her foot. Which I suppose is a natural thing to be puzzled about.

Toes crossed for continued improvement!

#129 ::: Benjamin Wolfe ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 03:09 PM:

edward oleander @ 123: Provided you weren't having your head imaged, the MRI techs I used to work with would have been amused that you were singing. That said, if you'd been having your head imaged, they would have been much less amused, since the images would be junk. Back in my fMRI days (2008-2010), I'd tell subjects that if they fell asleep in the magnet, I'd sing at them over the intercom. I'll note that I can't carry a tune in a bucket... and my subjects took the warning to heart.

#130 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 03:20 PM:

When I sent a friend Teresa's first comments after returning (62), she replied:

Drug-IQ haiku

#131 ::: Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2013, 09:59 PM:

Teresa, you need to stop trying to present intriguing and entertaining challenges to everyone at the hospital. It's generous and considerate of you, thinking of the boredom levels of Patrick and the hospital staff, but really, allergic reaction is going too far. (I'm kidding. I'm so sorry. I hope you're feeling better.)

Assuming the hives have diminished, how's the foot? I kept thinking in the first day or two, that I couldn't possibly need to ice my foot as often as the post-op schedule said. I was wrong. Ice is really, really your friend. (So are post-op pain meds. Don't be stoic.)

The last time I took penicillin was no fun: hives and ringing ears and a feeling that I was not actually on this plane of existence. Despite all this, my allergist tells me I am not allergic. I say it's spinach, and take Zithromax instead.

#132 ::: Karen Anderson ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 12:15 AM:

Teresa, that's awful about the augmentin. I wish you a speedy recovery from that as well as from the surgery from which you are actually supposed to be recovering.

After taking amoxicillin on several occasions, with no problem, I was given augmentin for a cat bite two years ago. I promptly broke out in hives and had an attack of interstitial cystitis. It must be that second ingredient.

Oddly, when I went in for antibiotics today (another cat bite, long story) the pharmacist looked at the HMO's computer records and chirped "Oh, I see your doctor overwrote your allergy to augmentin." Lovely. Time for a bracelet. Or maybe a tattoo.

#133 ::: Cygnet ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 12:20 AM:

Just a head's up -- It's also entirely possible to be allergic to opiates, and to some of the meds used for sedation.

I'm allergic to most antibiotics. It's a major issue when I get sick. Here's to hoping your allergy stays limited to penicillin.

Wishing you well, and a quick and uneventful recovery.

#134 ::: Dave Bell ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 03:53 AM:

The hospital I was in, last November, with my foot, is the subjects of a new very critical report on standards. It focuses on one particular part of the hospital, but I was in an ordinary ward and some of the bad things described happened to me.

I was getting an antibiotic by a drip, and there were two or three times when the drip for the late-night dose, running for maybe an hour, was left connected to the cannula until morning.

It's lucky that I am one of those people who move very little when I am asleep.

I still wouldn't want to experience the US medical system. If Patrick and Teresa were in the UK, with a drug reaction happening over the weekend, the system would actually do something. And no bills.

There's a ship-load of reasons why we celebrated the NHS at the Olympics.

#135 ::: Cally Soukup ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 11:17 AM:

Karen Anderson: Hooray for pharmacists!

#136 ::: Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 11:46 AM:

On Augmentin; amoxicillin (ingredient #1) is a bog-standard second generation pencillin-family antibiotic -- medium-spectrum effective, works well against non-resistant bacteria, cheap, well-absorbed through the gut (meaning, easy to take). However, during the 1970s beta-lactamase, an enzyme that cleaves one of the bonds in beta-lactam antibiotics (such as the penicillin family) began to spread increasingly widely -- it was the first real bacterial resistance trait to take off.

The 1980s response was Augmentin; which coupled amoxicillin with clavulanic acid. The latter is a beta-lactamase inhibitor, irreversibly binding to the enzyme molecule so that it can't break down the antibiotic molecules. (It costs a lot of metabolic energy for a bacterial cell to manufacture beta-lactamase, so the clavulanic acid basically overwhelms the bacterial defense and allows the amoxicillin to build up to toxic levels again -- toxic to the bacteria, that is.)

Alas, we're now seeing new and much more frightening bacterial antibiotic resistance traits, such as NDM-1, which aren't affected by clavulanic acid. Hence the pressing need for new antibiotics.

(In the long term: the good news is that it looks like if you discontinue a family of antibiotic for ~30 years, or around 0.5-1 million bacterial generations, they lose the resistance trait completely. This is happening at present with Chloroquine; once the go-to anti-malarial of choice it's been so ineffective since the 1980s that everybody stopped using it. And now it appears to be becoming useful again.)

#137 ::: Ginger ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 01:03 PM:

Charlie Stross @136: One small thing to consider is that Plasmodium is an Ampicomplexan parasite, not a bacterium.

#138 ::: Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 02:08 PM:

Ginger: indeed, but that actually makes it more hopeful; I lack specialist insight here, but in general more complex organisms reproduce more slowly (even, presumably, the haploid merozoites of the malaria parasite). So, 30 years might be ~1 million generations to a bacterium, but is probably a lot fewer generations for a more complex parasite. Suggesting that in prokaryotic species, resistance traits may be lost rather more rapidly than in, say, malaria.

#139 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 02:10 PM:

Charlie, #136: In the long term: the good news is that it looks like if you discontinue a family of antibiotic for ~30 years, or around 0.5-1 million bacterial generations, they lose the resistance trait completely.

Ah. I had wondered if that might happen, and didn't have enough genetics expertise to make a guess. So that's good to hear.

#140 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 02:56 PM:

Lenny Bailes @ #120: I'm pretty sure that the metronidazole I took for two and a half months when I had diverticulitis (finally treated by chopping out a substantial piece of my sigmoid colon) was responsible for the peripheral neuropathy I now have in both my legs and my fingertips. It's an infrequent, but not rare, side effect, and most doctors aren't aware of it. (Tropical medicine specialists are, though; it's cheap and widely used for amoebic dysentery.)

#141 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2013, 02:57 PM:

I've been gnomed, probably for excessive use of commas (a besetting sin of mine).

[Actually for the use of a drug name. I hope you understand why we want to take a second look at such posts. -- Boir Quine, Duty Gnome]

#142 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2013, 09:37 AM:

What's the latest, Teresa?

#143 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2013, 01:18 PM:

Back from Phoenix AZ. I was at a wedding. Yes, it was lovely. Interesting shenanigans the universe has been visiting on Teresa and Patrick while I was gone from ML: my sympathies, and here's hoping it STOPS soon, and things slide closer to normal. I hope you are feeling better, Teresa. An update (foot, hives, etc) would be most appreciated.

#144 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2013, 03:05 PM:

TNH's tweets of yesterday suggested a vast improvement in pain control and spirits.

#145 ::: Allan Beatty ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2013, 09:34 PM:

All these drugs mentioned by name, but only Theophylact gets gnomed. I guess the standard antibiotics are just not spamalicious enough.

#146 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2013, 09:52 PM:

Most recent Twitter statement from TNH, at 6:51 PM EDT:

Hmmm. That doesn’t look good. Bring on the Cipro.

#147 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2013, 11:27 PM:

TNH is back to tweeting with her usual insouciance.

#148 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2013, 09:12 AM:

Hang in there, Teresa and Patrick!

On the tangential topic of antibiotics and problems therewith: FDA warns of heart rhythm disruptions as a possible side effect of azithromycin (zithromax, z-pack).

The take-home: if you have heart rhythm problems, choose a different antibiotic.

This got my attention rather sharply, as my husband has a history of heart arrhythmia and just finished a z-pack. Geez.

#149 ::: Lila got gnomed ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2013, 09:13 AM:

For naming a prescription drug in the context of a new and alarming FDA warning. The one that starts with Z and ends with pack. It can disrupt heart rhythms.

#150 ::: janeyolen ::: (view all by) ::: March 15, 2013, 11:00 AM:

Raises hand--another penicillin allergy gal here, also Bactrim. But other stuff works for me. Can't do morphine and derivatives (much vomiting ensues) and am a poster child for surprising drug interactions. (Hyped up on benedryl, go into a kind of false death on vicoden, hallucinate on some over-the-counter cold meds, and can't spell any of them.)

Jane

#151 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: March 18, 2013, 09:46 PM:

How are you doing, Teresa?

#152 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: March 19, 2013, 12:20 AM:

Teresa has been tweeting up a storm.

#153 ::: Jim Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: March 19, 2013, 10:24 AM:

Teresa has been tweeting up a storm.

Is that where the snow is coming from!

#154 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: April 12, 2013, 11:19 PM:

I thought I'd mention that, per posts on Twitter, Teresa had a second round of surgery on her foot, apparently to re-jigger the hardware put in last time.

She and Patrick are already at home.

One of today's tweets included a picture of Teresa's feet, with "THE OTHER ONE" drawn on her right foot.

If I lived closer I'd bring a casserole, or a stack of DVDs.

#155 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: April 13, 2013, 10:26 AM:

Stefan Jones (154): Actually it says NOT THIS FOOT.

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