Sunday, June 1, 2014

Them Bones

     My husband's been having trouble walking around for a few weeks now, but not for the reasons one might think; for once, it has little to do with his spine. It's his ankles that have been giving him holy hell and, shockingly enough, we can't figure out why. It's not like are breaks or fractures, or even sprains. Anything acute like that is generally pretty noticeable, and this is something that's gradually gotten worse over the last year or so, to the point that even a trip to the grocery store is becoming intensely painful for him.

     I have no idea what, if any, correlation exists between Marfan's and osteoarthritis, if that is indeed what we're dealing with. My first thought would be that my husband is too young (41) to have arthritis this bad, but then I think of the kids who deal with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and think, "Really, you know better than to arbitrarily dismiss something when it comes to his medical adventures." So, I guess it's worth bringing up to his doctor at this week's INR appointment, but I still kinda doubt that's what it is.

     My suspicion, based solely on my experiences seeing how the disorder affects his body and not on any actual medical knowledge, is that the tendons and tissues that hold his joints together are starting to weaken, to the point that they're having trouble accommodating his body's everyday wear and tear. I don't know what, if anything, can be done about that if this does turn out to be the case, because ankles are things you pretty much have to have in order to be able to ambulate effectively.

     I know there are braces and things one can purchase, sock-like things that would go right under his actual socks and into his shoes. Right now, he's been wrapping his ankles with ace bandages, so it's the same idea, I guess, just adding extra support. That's probably compounding the issue, now that I think about it - the fact that he's just a larger human being than most. While nowhere near Robert Wadlow's size, he's still usually the tallest person in the room by a long shot, and the extra weight that comes with being so tall can't be helping matters. His limbs are not only a little more stretched-out than most peoples', but his joints are just weaker to begin with.

     This is another of those things that we're kind of afraid is just something we'll have to accept as reality now, thanks to the degenerative nature of the disorder. I mean, time marches on and all that, and no can fight its' effects on the body forever. Eventually, you get smart to the fact that you need to focus on mitigating the damage rather than ignoring what's happening or getting pissed about it. I think he, especially, is better at that than he used to be, so the ankle pain will hopefully be a minor detour for now. Maybe some braces, or exercises to strengthen whatever muscles are used in making that joint work effectively. (Sorry, legal professional, not medical professional. I remember not one tiny bit of my high school anatomy classes.)

     All in all, if this is our biggest concern at the moment, we're in relatively good shape for now.

No comments: