The Power of Pain

Miniature schnauzer
Miniature schnauzer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

These past 2 or 3 weeks have been a real trial.  Pain is the culprit and it has been taking its toll upon both of us.  Pain is a demon that now only affects the body, but also relationships.  First there was the varicose veins and then the blood clot and then to top everything off – the rain.

Kathy’s legs have been getting progressively painful.  This caused her to slow down her walking, which she loves doing, especially with Scamp, our Miniature Schnauzer.  She saw her doctor and it was recommended that she have an Ultrasound performed on her legs.  A small clot was found behind her left knee in a superficial vein and she was told that this was should not be of any concern.  At this point the pain is getting so bad that she has stopped walking the dog, and started using a cane.

She was sent on her next step to see the Vascular Surgeon.  He looks at the veins and says that she should have surgery very soon, but first to satisfy the insurance company, she needs to have another, more intense Ultrasound.  Sounds simple enough, get the Ultrasound and get the approval from the insurance then the surgery.  But not quite so fast my friend, it is not that simple.

A couple of days later Kathy went in for her Ultrasound and everything was going along as planned, so we thought.  The nurse completed the first section on one leg and started on the other.  Before going very far, she found a larger blood clot in a larger vein, now we are into DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) territory.  To keep the clot from getting any bigger or breaking loose and traveling to the lungs, she was sent to the ER where they placed her on Coumadin and Lovenox, a self-administered shot, to start thinning the blood.

A few days later she is starting to feel better.  No longer using the cane as much and starting to get a full nights rest.  Kathy is ready to see her doctor to determine if the blood thinners are starting to work.  Well they are working so well that instead of a reading of 2 to 3 it has gone to 11.  Stop the blood thinners and take Vitamin K to counter the other drugs.  Two days later another blood draw and the count is back to normal and restart the Coumadin at a much lower dose.

The vascular surgeon now has no choice but to place her in compression stockings and wait 3 months before repeating the Ultrasound and requesting approval from the insurance company.  In the meantime hope and pray that the Coumadin works and no more clots develop.  With all this I have been at a loss, not able to keep her safe but unable to help her ease the pain.

As I said earlier the pain that Kathy was experiencing not only affected her but me also.    I had started a new level of the medication to shrink my tumor.  I was not sleeping like I should and I was feeling tired and letting things get to me.  The irritability was not only upsetting to my wife, but to me also.

All this has created great concern to me for my wife.  We will have been married 42 years this coming October.  We have had a good and loving life together.  Don’t get me wrong we have had our ups and downs, our disagreements and arguments, and what couple who have been married this long haven’t.  I love my wife and don’t want to see anything harm her in any way.  My concern is great and my love for her is greater.