The Evil Doctor And The Cortisone Shot

Saw the doctor early this morning re my shoulder. He was very good in explaining everything to me, took some more xrays and saw right away that my clavicle is too close to my scapula. The joint is swelling because of the close proximity. I took a shot of cortisone as a symptom treatment. We discussed surgery which I told him was out of the question in the fall (Oregon surf season) if there was down time involved. He said 6-8 weeks and that no worry, we can do it when of if it doesn't improve anytime in the future. It's an easy surgery where he grinds the end of the clavicle down a bit to improve clearance and can be done arhtroscopically (sp?)

I asked him how it could ever improve. He said that he wasn't sure of a scientific explanation but that some people just seem to get better. Not sure if I believe that one.

The shot of cortisone was a different story altogether....He said something about local anesthesia before the shot and my blood pressure ticked up 30 points. It's no secret how bad I am with needles and besides, I'm not stupid, if you need a shot to prepare you for a shot, it's gotta be a bad-ass. I told him right away that I was a weenie (my words exactly) about shots and would likely pass out if it was bad or took a long time. Like most doctors I've dealt with who think I'm being over-dramatic, he said "Oh, don't worry, it's not really that bad. The anesthesia is more of a precaution."

I snorted and mentioned something like "Okay, but at least lean me toward something soft."

He took his stance, unsheathed the great needle and dove right in. The initial poke was nothing, I diverted all of my attention to the picture on the wall of the 7th green at Pebble Beach. I studied the ocean in the background of the picture, the grooming of the putting green, the color of the flag, "Ouch, god damn that hurts!". "Oh, sorry." The continued parrying and thrusting of the needle while he tried to find his way into the joint started taking me over the edge. I tried again to concentrate on the picture but for whatever reason the ocean level started rising and soon flooded the green, the flag floated away, and the whole picture started doing the high speed wobble. I looked straight at the doctor and said quietly "I'm going away now." Again he underestimated my weinieness and said "Okay, just hang in there a few seconds. If you want to lay down, go ahead." I told him (in someone elses voice because I was unable to use mine properly at this point, "can't...lay...down,"

"Oh." he said as he yanked out the syringe. As if it was the only thing holding me up I toppled over on the gurney like a large sack of potatoes. As is usually the case in my other medical related pass-outs, I go to a nice place. And I always wonder how everything back at the doctor's office went. But I don't wonder too hard cuz I'm just glad to be out of there and free of needles. I woke up several moments later, very disappointed to see the good doctor coming back in the door. "Bet your'e glad to see me, eh?"

"No, really, honestly I'm not. How'd it go?"

"Oh, I've got to do it again, you went over before I could finish."

About this time I started whining like a chihuaha in heat.
"Why the heck didn't you do me while I was out?"
"You were in a bad position."
"You could have moved me."
"You weren't out that long. Don't worry it'll go easy, the worst is over."
"Yeah, you only say that because you're on the giving side of the needle. Listen, can't you knock me out with something?"
"You'd be out too long, this'll only take a sec."
"I don't care, I'll call into work and you can just set me in the corner and I'll sleep for the rest of the day, just don't do that again!"
"Don't worry, the worst is over."
"Are you sure you can't do it while I'm laying down? I'm going to end up back down there anyway."
"No, I have to have you upright to do it."

Honestly, I was pretty much out before he even started. I had made up my mind already that it was going to hurt like hell and I wasn't at all disappointed. In retrospect, amputation would have been the easy way out. He finally got the needle into the right spot, shouted "Aha!" and warned me that there'd be a little pressure. By then I was somewhere around 500 miles above the earth looking down. I yelled at him from way up there, "I'm going away now...." I woke up and had a little blanket covering me. The nice nurse was giving me a little can of apple juice with a straw and the evil doctor was all smiles. "How are you?" he asked.

"Well, I'm not sure that you and I could ever be friends."

Now that it's over I might very well have the surgery sooner than later. Anything to avoid another shot.

Gotta stop writing, getting lightheaded thinking about it!!!