A Real Pain in the Neck

The pain began in my thumbs, as if I’d hit each of them with a hammer a few days before. Within a few days, I noticed a tingling in my hands. I assumed that I’d pinched a nerve in my wrists when I increased weights at the gym.

But then I woke up one night with tingling in my right foot. By the time my internist could see me, I was experiencing intermittent pin-pricks in on the right side of my face and neck and my right ear. Sometimes my scalp on the ride side would tingle, or even hurt.

Usually it was a nuisance, and occasionally it was debilitating.

Three rounds of blood tests, an ultrasound and an MRI ruled out everything from iron poisoning, diabetic neuropathy to MS, so I was sent to a neurologist.

The neurologist put me through another series of tests and another MRI.

By the way, did you know MRIs are awful? They pound you with Teslas, and I found it to be painful, in my scalp and neck, elbows and hands. The first MRI I had done involved dye, so they could try to find out what was wrong with my brain. The nurses had a lot of trouble with the dye because my veins had collapsed from all of the blood that had been drawn over the previous few days.

I’m not sure what is worse…lying in a cramped MRI machine having a million-dollar coil fling her magnetic curses at you for … Read the rest

If It Please the Crown…May I Have My Meds?

There are a lot of reasons why healthcare in America costs so much more than it would in a free market, and this sign posted at my local Walgreen’s demonstrates just one way the government drives up costs; they don’t trust you or your doctor to make decisions on your own. You have to return to your physician, sit in his waiting room for a few hours, pay the inflated co-pay (he charges you more because he has to deal with insurance), then return to the pharmacy to get a simple prescription refilled. When you consider the out-of-pocket costs, the insurance payments, your travel expenses and your lost opportunity costs, you’re probably paying 30 or 40 times what the free market value really is.

Tired of ridiculous health care costs? Your state and federal legislators are the primary reason. Let them know what you think.… Read the rest