Monday, May 24, 2004

Another trip to the E.R., another two weeks in the hospital. This time because of a knee injury. Long story short, I fell while out to dinner with friends and twisted, bruised, and mangled my left knee.

When I went to the local E.R. they decided that I had a left lateral ligement strain as well as blood in the joint thanks to being on blood thinners for the last year. After much discussion and hand ringing over the course of 12 hours the E.R. attending physician decided to admit me to look into the possibility of surgery.

After one week in the hospital and many visits from orthopedic surgeons, we decided that we would try physical therapy first. That was just fine by me, after being on a ventilator for three months I wasn't anxious to try it again for any reason including surgery. I would move to a "rehab facility" (fancy name for nursing home) the next day.

Here is where I ran into problems. From day one the therapists were after me because I was working to hard, working myself to exhaustion. I'm sorry, I thought thats why I was there, to work hard at getting better. Then when I refused to slow down to there pace (as it was I was only getting about an hour of therapy a day) they labeled me as noncompliant. Someone tell me why when a patient wants to take an active roll in a speedy recovery they're labeled noncompliant. To make a long story short Friday afternoon I got tired of their BS and left to recouperate at home. Ahhh, much better.

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Here is the long awaited post on the symposium on Saturday. There was so much information given on Saturday that I couldn’t hope to cover it all in one post. I will cover some of the highlights though.

Our guest speaker was Dr. Lisa Corbin. Dr. Corbin’s specialty during her residency was internal medicine. She has spent many hours along side patients and family members coping with life altering illness. Dr. Corbin is now the Medical Director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, better known to us in the Denver area as University Hospital.

Dr. Corbin and her associates at the center take an approach to medicine that is becoming more widely accepted in western medicine. That approach is called Complementary Alternative Medicine or CAM for short. The list of CAM therapies is as long a list as one can imagine, and many of them are nothing more than “snake oil”. The therapies that Dr. Corbin supports have a proven track record for aiding recovery and relieving symptoms, as well as solid science to back them up. These CAM therapies can be very helpful but the center insists that any treatment must be done in coordination with traditional medicine (family doctor, specialist, etc.). Some of these therapies include:

Herbs/Supplements (***Please consult your pharmacist regarding drug interactions***)
Message Therapy
Mind Body Connection (psycho-therapy, support groups, stress reduction, and sleep)

There are many things one must keep in mind when considering CAM therapies. Safety being first and foremost. I strongly urge you to contact Dr. Corbin or her associates for further information or a referral to a integrative medicine specialist in your area. You can reach the center at (720)-848-1090.

I attended the fourth annual Colorado GBS symposium Saturday. I had a great time and learned a lot. I also made many new friends, friends who have traveled the same road I am now traveling. I will post later about the topics discussed and other things related to the conference, but now I must rest. It has been a very stressful week, with two family members undergoing emergency surgery, and coping with my own recovery. All in all though I am very glad I attended, and I look forward to next years gathering

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