Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Max falls apart

an anonymous spine (not Max's)

I have always lived by the simple rule that if you don’t go to the doctor then no one can find anything wrong with you. I have therefore only gone to the doctor in times of greatest need, i.e. debilitating pain for which drugs are essential. Even in the case of pain, more often than not I have taken someone else’s drugs or got the doctor to prescribe drugs without actually seeing me.

Until today. After last year’s broken back (see “Max on drugs” – 30 June 2005) and then my recent two back episodes in the space of one week, I went to the doctor in hopes of being given some exercises or physical therapy or a referral to a chiropractor. But no, the doctor (an associate of the Jester, but not the Jester himself) sent me to the hospital for x-rays. He also looked at my self-imposed drug regimen, which I had of course recorded, and not only did he approve, but he asked me if I needed more of anything. I got more codeine to replace what I had taken from AG. It looks like I might be getting prescriptions for more of everything else when I go back for the x-ray follow-up.

I got home and took the x-ray doctor’s diagnosis out of the envelope with the pictures of my spine. Needless to say, medical Czech is not my language speciality, so the translation was slow and painstaking. Then there is the problem that I don’t understand the English either. The good news is that my spine is straight and my bone structure is fine. The bad news is that I have Schmorl’s nodes, signs of spondylosis, and chondrosis in my L5 vertebra. Hooray! – more things of which I have never heard.

Next stop: Google. What did medically ignorant people do before Google and Wikipedia?

Schmorl’s nodes: herniations of the intervertebral disc through the vertebral end-plate. The disease is self-limiting and usually does not require extensive treatment. Usually due to trauma.

Spondylosis: spinal osteoarthritis; a degenerative disorder of which aging is the primary cause.

Invertebral (osteo)chondrosis: a degenerative process of the spine characterized radiographically by the presence of vacuum phenomena, disc space narrowing and reactive sclerosis of the vertebral body. Also due to aging.

AG had said everything would start falling apart as soon as I turned 40. Why did she have to be right?





Tits Malone said...


Sorry to hear about your sore back and the causes...it is shitty but lets hope the drugs are groovy. Failing that, might I suggest some BC bud...hahahaha

Did you hear about BSB's baby boy?? Now I feel old...

Monkey's Max said...

Yes, I heard about the boy. Jimmy got a text on Saturday morning. Weird.

Thanks for the sympathy - I don't think it's going to turn out to be a very big deal - it's just interesting that there is so much out there in the way of diseases and conditions. Someone's out to get us.

I am a firm believer in medical marijuana. I still have the same Moravian stuff that knocked out some of the back pain last year. And I filled the codeine prescription. The doctor gave me twice as much as I expected.

Tits Malone said...


I don't know if this might help...however, I did my first ever yoga class last night. I was really and fantastically surprized how great I felt afterwards. There are some granola moments but the stretching and the movements might help you out with the back issue.

Look out for my email about my NIA classes...fun times...and no photographic evidence - which is the true blessing.

Anonymous said...

I suffer from lower back pain from putting out my back a couple of times and stress I think. Gosh I am only 32 and I have back pain. Anyhow, I practice yoga intensly and it really helps. TM I am happy to hear you are enjoying yoga.
Get one of those magic bags, they work amazingly well.