Thursday, March 16, 2006

What's up Doc?

I went to a doctor for the first time as an adult for a non-birth control related reason.

Dr. Jeannie is a tertiary friend who squeezed me in to evaluate my tendon. Normally we see each other at casual BBQ or potluck, so we giggled at meeting each other because we were in our ‘grown-up costumes’ in my lawyer suit and her white doctor labcoat.

As suspected, it was simply inflamed due to overuse. Advil and rest will be the cure. She said I could continue to bike to work as long as I take it easy. This is easy in theory, but in practice I continue to find myself biking faster than I should, especially whenever another rider passes me. Even though I know that I supposed to ride slowly, it galls me that when people pass me they think I am a slowpoke.

Jeannie also gave me a regular physical. Everything is good. In fact, she was shocked when my "oxygen saturation level" read at 100%. She said that this is very rare and she has only seen it a few times. Apparently my hemoglobin contains the maximum amount of oxygen that it can hold. I’ve never heard of this before, but she was pretty excited about it.

Since I now have the luxury of health insurance, I agreed to blood work and an acupuncture therapy – which she thought would relieve some of the inflamation. Honestly though, I was mostly just curious about acupuncture. I haven’t had my cholesterol tested in about eight years, so I didn’t hesitate about that suggestion. In the interim eight years I have had vastly varied periods of eating really well, and also periods of eating horribly (when I was a pastry chef I think most of my daily calories came from butter, cream and chocolate). I wanted to know how much damage I did in the interim.

Here are my lab results (right column is what the goal is):
58 Triglycerides <150
165 Total Cholesterol <200
85 HDL (good chol) >40
68 LDL (bad chol) <130
91 Glucose <100

Although my periods of horrible eating cause my ass to fluctuate, my cholesterol is still low. I don’t know much about this, but Jeannie said that it is unusual for someone’s good cholesterol to be higher than their bad. I am living proof to support the theory that dark chocolate and red wine are good for this stuff (or at least balance out the butter and cream!).

The acupuncture was pretty weird. First, the insertion of the needles should have hurt more – even though I was paying attention, I couldn’t feel one needle prick me at all. After pincushioning me, she hooked some of the needles up with wire and ran electric pulses through them. This felt very disconcerting – my toes and muscles in my feet were twitching with the pulses, and I couldn’t exercise any control over these twitches. Very, very weird. Plus the sensation itself could be pretty intense depending on how much juice she ran through me.

Perhaps the most disturbing part was that there were too many rhythms going on.
I could hear the ticking of the timer, which was out of synch with the two different speeds of pulses going through my legs, plus I became distinctly aware of my heartbeat – which didn’t match any of these other three rhythms. This all felt very freaky and was an uncomfortable, and very overwhelming sensation. But my tendon felt noticeably better afterwards.

So the trip to the doctor was good. Besides this temporary tendon thing, I am lucky to be very healthy. I wish I could spread this to others.


At 11:56 PM, Anonymous Randy said...

Great numbers, you rock!


At 9:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never hear from you these days.


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