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A public conversation about our worlds.

  • Monday: Morgan J. Locke
  • Tuesday: Madeleine E. Robins
  • Wednesday: Maureen F. McHugh
  • Thursday: Bradley Denton
  • Friday: Steven Gould
  • Saturday: Caroline Spector
  • Sunday: Rory Harper

Brain Activity



Dizzy. I’m so Dizzy, My Head is Spinning …

July 17th, 2007 by Caroline Spector

 Dizzy

Okay, I’m a few days late on my Saturday post.  But I have some really good reasons:

Bob (New Cat’s new name) spent Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at two different emergency clinics. He’s okay, but for about forty-eight hours it looked scary.

There were potentially frightening X-rays, the possibility of his heart being enlarged, terrible anemia, and an odd lab result on one of his liver readings. After more tests, his heart is fine and the one odd liver value is coming down. His red blood cell count is back to normal. He’s home and tormenting Dave (the other tabby) so all there is good.

Then on Sunday, I had vertigo. I’m not talking about, “Ooo, I’m a little light-headed.” I’m talking feeling as if I’d drunk four bottles of tequila, got into one of those human-sized gyroscopes, and then taken a roller coaster ride. To make things worse, I hurled during the urgent care exam. It was mortifying.

I’ve never experienced anything like it. At one point, I couldn’t move my eyes without sending the room into an impressive axis-tilting whirligig. It was one of the worst twenty-four hours of my life.

I couldn’t walk straight. The Dude had to help me walk into the clinic. During the exam, the doctor said he had to ask if I was intoxicated because my physical behavior was so screwed up. (He didn’t really think I was drunk, btw.) I would have been dead of alcohol poisoning long before I drank enough to reach this stage of incapacitation.

There wasn’t much for them to do. They sent me home, and The Dude went out for Meclizine. I took some and, amazingly enough, felt well enough to get out of bed and go lie down on the couch.

Monday I was better, but my balance was still off. I’m good today, just tired. I’m going to the “Dizzy Clinic” next week to start some physical therapy.

I’ve been through this before. I had Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo. My doctor explained this as the rocks in your head going where they’re not supposed to. They basically treat your head like those kids’ puzzles where you try to get the ball bearings into the little holes. It’s less fun than it sounds.

And that’s why I didn’t get my post done this weekend.

You got a problem with that? Come on over to my house. I’ll spin around a couple of times, and we’ll see what happens . . .

Posted in Caroline, Cats, Daily Life, Dammit!, Health and Safety, Medicine, The Dude | 10 Comments »

10 Responses

  1. LauraJMixon Says:

    Sympathies on everything, Caroline. I have BPPV as well, and it truly sux.

  2. Rory Harper Says:

    Jeez, Caroline, I’m so sorry to hear about this. That’s a miserable thing to have happen.

    When I was in my 20′s I had severe chronic ear infections, so I know what it’s like to have your sense of balance just…..go away. But yours sounds like it’s a lot worse than mine ever was. At least with mine, I could take some phenothiazines and have the nausea go into neutral.

    This has been a rotten sucky health year so far, for too many of us.

  3. Madeleine Robins Says:

    I got no problems with that, Caroline. Hope you’re feeling more, um, stable now. As one who suffers from a fainting disorder (nowhere near as Victorian as it sounds, but often mortifying) I have a policy never to make fun of anyone else’s benign but unpleasant ailments.

    I’m hoping that we’re all just going to cheer up and get healthy for a good long while.

  4. Maureen McQ Says:

    I have a real fascination with medical stuff. But I prefer it to happen to complete strangers and show up on cable TV.

    Glad you’re better, Caroline. I cannot imagine how they are going to realign your inner ear but I can only imagine it will be…interesting. As in the old curse, may you be born in interesting times.

  5. Caroline Spector Says:

    Thanks for the kind words y’all.

    Laura, I am so sorry you have BPPV, too. It sucks.

    Madeleine, fainting randomly must be more than a little scary. I hope it doesn’t happen too often.

    Rory, we are just in that whole middle-age cattle chute. Stuff is going to break and drop off the chassis.

    Maureen, I’ll call you and give you details. I love medical ookiness, too.

  6. LauraJMixon Says:

    And, btw…

    “Benign,” indeed. Mmmph. I’ll puke on whoever named the phenomenon and they can tell me how benign it is.

  7. Madeleine Robins Says:

    Caroline–with one exception, the fainting thing has been more comic than not (I fainted at the top of an escalator in an NYC department store when I was 20, and came to with an elderly woman poking me in the side with an umbrella. “Girl, get up! This isn’t a protest, this is Alexanders!”). Basically the treatment for vaso-vagal syncope is: when you feel faint, get down on the floor where you can’t fall any farther.

    Poor Sarcasm Girl inherited this from me and finds it just as useless a party trick as I do. The defining test is tedious and involves needles, so the kid has never been tested, but the treatment (get down low) remains the same.

    Feeling more steady today?

  8. Caroline Spector Says:

    Madeleine,

    My mother-in-law has the fainting thing you have. It’s been driving her nuts. I’m so sorry Sarcasm Girl has it, too.

    Laura,

    I’m with you on the “benign.” Yes, it won’t kill you, but it’ll make you wish you were dead.

    I am better now, but I have to go in for an MRI. “Oooo, let’s shove Caroline into a tiny tube, bang large objects around her head, and then take pictures. It’ll be fun! What? She’s claustrophobic? Even better!”

  9. Bradley Denton Says:

    Sounds mui entertaining. If they allow an audience, you should invite your friends.

    But seriously: I’m so sorry. It sounds like No Fun At All.

  10. Charles Atkinson Says:

    Yup,

    I have been dancing and spinning all summer and I just got BPPV too.

    Counting on the rocks in your head repositioning when I can find a therapist in Massachusetts!!!

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