Tag Archives: predisone

Lymphedema, Bone on Bone Arthritis, COPD – Prayer, Predisone, Water Workouts Help Heal this Patient

Regular rehab is fabulous.  But?  It doesn’t go far enough – long enough – it hurts and it isn’t challenging enough.

Years ago, before beginning a concentrated physical exercise routine I asked my pulmo how high I should allow my heart rate to go and he sincerely and thoughtfully said I probably shouldn’t let it get over 100 at the beginning.  I laughed and told him it shoots to 100 just getting up from a chair!   I’ve not asked anyone since.

I’ve had a few really outstanding rehab technicians and I’ve learned from them.  They have to follow rules though and I don’t.   I’m a patient and I’m through coddling myself when I feel sick because I have a goal and it has to happen this year.

Except for one day when I was in Harrison and couldn’t make my swim session…we haven’t missed one swim session since we began 1 February 2011.  No matter what, my legs can ooze, my lungs labor and wheeze or burn with a fever – nothing stands in the way of a swim session.

Marilyn Grindrod is my swim coach and a miracle worker.  The only thing she said when we met and she asked if my doctor approved of what we planned to do and I told her I believed they did but I would not ever ask my doctors to give me a written note guaranteeing my fitness to exercise.  They couldn’t.  Nobody could.  Marilyn nodded and said, “get in the water, let’s get started.”

She doesn’t say I can’t do something. She leads the way and I follow as best I can.  Gradually I’m improving to a physical fitness I haven’t had in years and is proving out what Anna Marx, PT, DPT at Kitsap Physical Therapy in Silverdale proved to me:  the right machine/exercise WILL help my left hip get better and manageable.

Marilyn also, by changing my work-outs and her focus on breathing, must be getting oxygen to areas that have suffered without the oxygen they’ve needed…such as the Lymphedema in my lower legs.

Melissa will be surprised when I have to go in to be measured for another set of support stockings.  Lower leg muscle will meet her measuring tape, not the flab of yesterday.

My legs (left leg mostly) occasionally still need and get the Old Guy’s expert spiral and padded wrapping when the skin  gets too painful and I know if we don’t catch it, the skin will crack and lymphatic fluid  will again ooze  out.  This is the longest stretch I’ve not needed to see a doc or Melissa at NW Orthopedic and Lymphoma rehab in Port Orchard for another outbreak!  Melissa’s patient education works.

My ideal week is four, one hour or longer sessions in the warm pool water.  The work-outs are nonstop, smooth and I can feel my locked body become more flexible, more agile and I’m beginning to feel muscle again.

A couple weeks ago working out close to the diving board I impulsively reached up and grabbed the end of the board and began doing ‘chin ups’-  shooting myself up out of the water and above the board to my chest, lowered myself and repeated 15 times.  That was a lot of weight I pulled up – the point is I did it easily – the first twelve anyway.

So, you can’t live a life in the water can you?  No.  What I can now do on land is lift my left leg about a foot and flex my left ankle.  They’ve been – sort of – frozen.  When something hurts we have a tendency to back off and it becomes a spiral into a body that doesn’t work and eventually gets dumped into a wheelchair.

My patient opinion is that physical rehab works best, is most effective in the water.  The warm pool water resistance gets us further faster with less pain.

I believe in miracles.

In a Pulmonary Function Test two months ago, 16 February 2011 my FEV 1 (Gold Standard for COPD) sats had dropped across the board:    35% – 31% – 29%.

Last week 6 April 2011 across the board they were:                                                                            56% – 50% – 48%

Christopher Goss, MD  at the University of Washington Medical Center was amazed and doesn’t need to see me again for five or six months.

What made the difference?  The longer non-burst of Predisone he extended? A miracle?  Prayers?  Serious water work-out by a professional swim coach?

My sister lives in a small town in Kentucky and goes to a Revival church.  She and her companion each stood up and asked the minister and congregation to “pray for Karen’s sister, Sharon in Washington” and Karen says they do!

Kristin Okinaka, a reporter at the weekly CK Reporter AND a runner recently came out and wrote an article and took a photo that shows some of my recumbent trikeshttp://www.pnwlocalnews.com/kitsap/ckr/news/119501909.html

The following article is what prompted this post today:   If Great Brittan can do it – we can too!

“Exercise pilot is successful for rheumatoid arthritis

People with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in Portsmouth reaped the benefits from an exercise pilot, which was the first of its kind in the UK.

Volunteers took part in a 10-week programme to get exercising in the local area. They had tried various activities, including yoga, tai chi, walking and circuit-based exercises.

‘Appropriate, regular exercise is very important for people with rheumatoid arthritis, even when they are experiencing a flare of their symptoms,’ said Colin Beevor, matron and service manager of musculoskeletal outpatient department services at Queen Alexandra Hospital, where the pilot was launched. ‘Being more active helps to control joint swelling and ultimately can reduce the pain, stiffness and fatigue a patient may experience.’

Rather than hospital-based exercise, local facilities were used to encourage participants to become accustomed to working out in a familiar environment. By learning the basics of a variety of activities, participants were also able to discover which forms of exercise they enjoyed the most, with a view to continuing with the exercise after the pilot ended.

Around 700,000 people in the UK have RA, and while many recognise the importance and benefit of exercise for their condition, obstacles such as the prohibitive cost of classes or feeling stigmatised or embarrassed in group classes can stop people with RA regularly exercising.

Local firms such as private gyms and sports centres are now being encouraged to offer discounts to people with RA to enable the participants of the pilot to continue their exercise programme….”

The pilot, run by Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, Solent Healthcare and UCB Pharma Ltd, received positive feedback from participants. http://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/NewsRoom/Latestnewsstories/Exercisepilotissuccessfulforrheumatoidarthritis

More later…thanks for listening… Sharon O’Hara

Unhealthy Excess Fat Is Worth $1,298.

Oh Fat Ones!

A few comments and a challenge.
Be aware that a move is afoot to tax soda pop as a primary reason this nation is top heavy with obese folks causing increased Health Care costs. The idea is that the extra 12-cent or so tax will cut down on the fatty folks buying soda thus we would lose weight and need less medical care.

It is strange the authorities do not look elsewhere to find better high calorie items to increase tax. Perhaps they could take a hard look toward chocolate covered donuts, Prednisone, Big Macs, a Frosty, French fries, Sara Lee pastries, Colonel Sanders chicken, ChezeIts, Butterfingers, Almond Roca, Hershey bars and other high calorie waist expanders rather than look toward soda pop as the blimp builder.

Drug addicts can hide their addiction, drunks too.
The public, until caught, does not see the human predator. Most people can hide addiction or criminal ways from public view until caught.
Not so, the fatties of the world. They have no place to hide. The fat of the obese is up, down, front, back, and everywhere.

The public judgment is there, as well. A recent study according to two Mayo clinic nutritionists, Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D. showed the evidence of obesity stigma.

The “July 2008 “International Journal of Obesity” …study developed a tool that could be used to measure bias, and to also rank biases from being a strong bias relative to others that are weaker. The three targets of bias that were chosen to measure and compare were: obesity, homosexuality, and Muslims. …The authors chose these three because each are widely known minority groups — …, they are documented targets of discrimination.

What emerged was that that there was strongest prejudice against obesity, followed next by bias against homosexuals, and then against Muslims. (If you wish to see the statistical details and strengths of the rankings you may access the using the link below.)

Laws and other protective policies have been put into place over the years to discourage — even punish — discrimination against race, gender, sexual orientation, and religion. It is pointed out that there is widespread documented evidence of weight bias in employment, educational, interpersonal — and yes — in medical settings. However unlike these other targets, no laws or protective policies are in place to discourage or punish bias against obesity.

The study concludes that weight bias is significantly stronger than bias against homosexuals and Muslims. It also concludes that much more research is needed in the area of prejudice and its causes and solutions.
For now, at the least, don’t you think social advocacy is needed to decrease the disproportionate attitude — and acceptance — of bias toward obese individuals? The authors — and I — applaud the efforts and progress made in protecting other minority groups against prejudice and discrimination. And, I also agree with the authors that “it is unacceptable that the obesity stigma is still so pervasive, strong and under recognized.”

It is time to prove – again – that most patients, if educated to what may well be their medical future if they do not change personal habits WILL make the changes needed to avoid future medical conditions.
After smoking forty years, I quit and discovered the true meaning of addiction and a gut-wrenching craving to smoke.
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/comments/MY00586_comments#post

Losing the excess pounds will not change the lung diseases or add a lubricant between the bones of my left hip…but it will make a difference for one or more of the other medical conditions.

I am committing here publically to begin the Dash Diet http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/hbp/dash/new_dash.pdf on Thursday, September 24, 2009.

Women100 pounds or more overweight are welcome to join in the weight loss quest to the healthiest we can be through good nutrition, fewer calories and exercise.

I will meet with anyone interested, weekly or whatever works to make the goal for better health AND for the challenge that the first of us to lose the 100 pounds and keep it off for six months will win $1,295.

We can work out the details.

The beginning is Thursday, 24 September 2009. My plan is the Dash Diet but yours can be anything your doctor approves. Let me know…and change our health lives. It is time to take those lemons and make lemonade.

Can I do it this time? I bet I can.

http://www.wiredprnews.com/2009/09/14/obesity-a-focus-of-health-care-reform_200909145726.html

More later… Sharon O’Hara