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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Belated Post: Elevator Blog

Yesterday's challenge:

Elevator blog. If you were in an elevator with someone and they asked about your blog. What would you tell them? Make a version for a 30 second elevator ride. Make a version for a 1 minute elevator ride.
Make a version for a 2 minute elevator ride.
30 seconds.

I write about my experiences with arthritis, about how I am coping with it and what I have done about it. I  do it for myself as well as for others, to keep track of specific details in my experiences.

1 minute.

I have arthritis, particularly in my knees.  I have had it for over 30 years. It has become progressively worse and I experimented, over the years of the blog (and before) with different ways to relieve the pain. I write about these experiences to keep track of what might be promising and what not, and to add to the information others gather about this disease and its treatments.

My latest effort has been total knee replacements of both knees. I am currently in recovery of the right knee surgery, and recording how I feel and what I am doing.

2 minutes.

I have had arthritis, particularly in my knees, for over 30 years. Early on, I was sent to physical therapy, which worked to some extent, but eventually did not help. The clinic I went to in those years never actually diagnosed it as arthritis, so I do not know what I might have tried had I known.

I started this blog several years ago when I came upon a book called Arthritis Rx. It is by a doctor at a prestigious medical center who has many patients with arthritis. Interestingly, he developed a program that calls for changes in diet, inclusion of some yoga-style exercises, and the use of supplements. Although he is a doctor he felt most people could alleviate their pain with these simple changes and avoid more invasive efforts. I did the exercises, made the changes, for many months. recording them in my blog. Eventually I found myself looking further out, into related techniques, to expand the effort. I tried elimination diets, additional exercises, and more. I started going to a gym that had a trainer who specialized in working with elderly people and who understands arthritis. My goal was to overcome the damage done to my knee joints by increasing the strength in different muscles, to compensate.

After being on this track for nearly a year I found I was not improving, although I was quite diligent. I read information on knee treatments provided by the Foundation for Informed Medical Decision-Making and realized that a knee replacement was likely the only course that could make a significant difference for me.  I have since had both knees replaced and have recorded those experiences.
This post was written as part of NHBPM – 30 health posts in 30 days:

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