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Marilee J. Layman

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05:54 pm: Neurologist
So I got up at an unhuman hour, "walked" the giant DVD/VCR box down the ramp and sidewalk into the back of the van, drove to the shipping place, and then walked it to the door of the shipping place. The owner came to get the box and I told her it had a pre-paid Fedex shipping label and headed on to the neurologist.

I got the last handicapped parking spot at Kaiser Penderbrook and when I went into the building, there was a young foreign family who clearly didn't know where they were, but weren't looking like they wanted help. I pushed the Up button for the elevators and they got in after me. They didn't push a button inside, and as we were going up, the man asked me if I worked there. Bad choice of words because the building doesn't belong to Kaiser -- they rent a few floors -- and I said "no" and asked him where he was going. He said "Dr. Spicer" and as the elevator door opened on the fourth floor, I asked him what type of doctor and the woman outside said "This is the fourth floor!" I said "Yes, thank you" and motioned the family out. He said something I didn't quite understand and then tapped the heart area and I said "cardiologist?" He said yes, so I told and motioned how to go down two floors and turn right when they get off the elevator. I have two doctors there and I don't know any of the cardiologists.

The neurologist was a little late and the first thing she did was to congratulate me for surviving. Then she told me:

1. They don't know what caused the stroke after all. The rheumatology (vasculitis) was a guess by the Kaiser DC-area Chief rheumatologist.

2. They don't know when it happened. I had the explosive headache on the 2nd and the first time they saw something odd on the CTs was the 5th.

3. The damage is in exactly the same place my first (1988) stroke was. Nice thing about being a Kaiser member since 1977 -- she can just look this up.

4. My status/ability is almost exactly what it was before this stroke. From my side, I can read faster than recently but not as fast as before the first, my voice is gravelly and throat sometimes painful, and some food seems diluted in taste.

5. How to decrease/discontinue one of the anticonvulsent meds because I don't need two when I've never had a seizure.

6. To see the rheumatologist soon (I walked down the hall and got an appointment for Thursday).

I had generic Tylenol #3 to pick up at Kaiser Manassas; both centers are off I-66, so I just drove out. I had lunch at Chili's -- soup, salad, and their chips & salsa -- and then came home to find the lawn crew had mowed and blowed and caused the first kitty terror of the year. The cats will get better as they continue through the year and finally get used to them and then the mowing will stop and the cats will forget.

I got partway through my outside blog list when I almost went to sleep, so I napped for about 2.5 hours. This is the second day of driving and walking and talking to people so I may have to nap every day for the rest of the week.

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Comments

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From:julesjones
Date:April 14th, 2009 10:00 pm (UTC)
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Sounds like reasonably good news overall even if they're still scratching their heads about exactly what happened.
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From:pameladean
Date:April 14th, 2009 10:10 pm (UTC)
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Oh golly, mysterious unique medical conditions are SO MUCH FUN.

I'm so glad that your ability is essentially unchanged. Hope the gravelly/painful throat gets better, though.

Poor cats. I took my Ari out for a walk on his leash and he was terrorized by the sounds of the neighbor bringing his lawn equipment up out of his basement.

P.
From:etumukutenyak
Date:April 14th, 2009 10:43 pm (UTC)
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That's why CT are really not the scan of choice for soft tissue like brain -- it will miss subtle changes that show up on an MRI. Of course, MRI is slower and has its own issues, but it's unbeatable for the brain.

Oh, well. I'll put away my soapbox and congratulate you on your day. ;-) We had our lawn crew come through yesterday, and I'm sure my cats barely noticed them. They never seem to even flick an ear when the lawnmowers are going. The dogs, now, they bark like crazy, but that's them protecting the house.
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From:mjlayman
Date:April 14th, 2009 11:12 pm (UTC)
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I had two MRIs in there, but the first one was misread by the techs who did it (at night) and it was the doctors who saw it in the morning who had me come back, have another, and then admitted me. So it must have been the MRI on the 5th that showed the damage.

Both of my cats are afraid of other people (although getting used to lizzibabe), and any loud noises.
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From:mplsvala
Date:April 15th, 2009 07:10 am (UTC)

Good Grief!

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I'm so relieved to hear that you are doing so well. How awful. Well, I guess that's an excellent reason to miss Minicon. But don't let it happen again. (You know, the way you weather your storms is purely amazing.)
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From:mjlayman
Date:April 15th, 2009 07:20 pm (UTC)

Re: Good Grief!

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I really missed Minicon and I hope I have enough money for next year!
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From:mplsvala
Date:April 16th, 2009 04:15 am (UTC)

next year!

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We should pick a day. time and place to meet now. By the time it rolls around, I will have refered to it enough to burn it on my brain. I can be hard to find, I tend to leave places intending something particular to wander off with someone I've randomly run into instead. So, plans would be good.
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From:mjlayman
Date:April 16th, 2009 10:18 pm (UTC)

Re: next year!

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Well, other than this year, I've worked the t-shirt and volunteer tables, so unless whoever did it this year wants to continue or split the time, you can always find me there during the day.
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From:serge_lj
Date:April 15th, 2009 04:49 pm (UTC)
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Things are betting better. Things are getting better. Things are getting better. Yay!
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From:mjlayman
Date:April 15th, 2009 07:21 pm (UTC)
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Yep, they are!
From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 17th, 2009 03:48 am (UTC)
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Naps are a good thing - really!
Hope the kitties get used to the lawn crew soon. I imagine all that noise sounds very scary when you don't know what's going on.
I'm so glad you're doing so well. You really recovered amazingly fast. Very good.
Take good care,
Doris
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From:sciamanna
Date:April 17th, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC)
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Catching up with LJ backlog... I'm very glad to hear that this stroke had so little impact and you're doing so well!
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