Hands

Right Hand
My Right Hand

My hands have been hurting — a lot! So, I took a breather from class for a couple of weeks to rest my wrists and hands.  X-rays reveled, to no surprise, the cartilage is gone and my wrist bones are all smooshed together. My elbows are also in bad shape! Come to think of it, my shoulders are the only joints left in my entire body that have not acted up! Yet! Touch wood, now! As my Indian family would say.

I fear that the very thing
that I love to do
will be the downfall of me
— again!

Lost and Found

The next few years would prove to be a very difficult time both physically and emotionally. I had two growing, busy, little boys and my arthritis was rearing its ugly head once again. I was having a lot of trouble with my lower back and the nerve block injections I’d been receiving for two years weren’t working anymore. My ankle joints had been completely shot for a long time; there was no cartilage left and the pain was getting worse. To make matters worse, I developed severe colitis that landed me in the hospital on Ethan’s second birthday. Needless to say, I fell into a deep depression…

Over the course of three years, it took a therapist, one GI Doctor, two incredible Orthopedic Surgeons, my loving family, and a fuzzy orange tabby, to put me back together again!

In March of 2010 I had my left ankle replaced using the (STAR) method. I had my right one done 14 months later. My surgeon, Dr. Gregory Berlet is a leading expert in the field and had been involved in a variety of clinical trials. He is a remarkable man and a terrific doctor. My life has been forever changed because of him!

X-Rays
New Ankles_2011

In between the two, I had back surgery. After meeting with several disappointing doctors, I found Dr. Mick Perez-Cruet, another lifesaver! He literally “wrote the book” on minimally invasive back surgery and is also a wonderful, kind man. In December of 2010, I had a lower lumbar fusion. He discovered that the cartilage had worn completely out, thus causing my agonizing pain. Once fused, the pain was gone immediately! Compared to the ankle surgery, this one was a piece of cake! I was up and “running” in a few weeks.