Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Herd of Zebras

There is a saying in medicine that goes something to the effect that, when you hear hoof beats, think of horses, not zebras.

It is supposed to mean that when a patient presents with symptoms, you look at the most common things first, and then go after the uncommon if the common is ruled out.

This mimi is bone weary. After days spent shuffling to doctors, labs, back to doctors, to the pharmacy again and again, everything is pointing to a probable simple solution, and yet my doctors are all out zebra hunting.

The hand surgeon, of course, wants to open up my fingers and take samples. The dermatologist isn't going to let him, insisting that if they need samples, he will get smaller ones a better way, with less pain and faster healing.

The infectious disease specialist wants me to see a rheumatologist if certain tests come out one way, but so far, none of them have, and he is stumped.

The family doctor is just sitting back shaking his head, spitting out theories and watching the other doctor's tests results roll in.

As test after test blows their favorite, and complex, theory out of the water -- a totally normal CRP disproving both infection and inflammation, anybody? -- they come up with more complicated possibilities. The simple solution, offered by an observation of Sweetie, has been discounted, although every test points to it.

There is one more test result we await. If it comes back normal, and the latest cream works, i am assuming a diagnosis and sticking with it.

Meanwhile, i don't think i hear zebras in the middle of Louisiana, especially since i am nowhere near the zoo.

Today is:

Annual Visit of the Poe Toaster (The mysterious person who, dressed in black with a wide brimmed hat and scarf, annually visit's Poe's grave on his birthday, leaving roses and cognac.)

Brew A Potion Day

Champagne Day

Confederate Heroes Day -- Texas, US

Full Wolf Moon

Mahayana New Year -- Buddhist (through the 21st)

National Popcorn Day

St. Canute's Day (patron of Denmark)

St. Henry of Uppsala's Day (patron of Finland)

St. Wulfstan's Day

Theophany/Epiphany -- Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Christians who still follow the Julian Calendar

Timkat -- Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

Birthdays Today:

Jodie Sweetin, 1982
Shawn Wayans, 1971
Wendy Moniz, 1969
Junior Seau, 1969
Paul McCrane, 1961
Thomas Kinkade, 1958
Desi Arnaz, Jr., 1953
Dewey Bunnell, 1952
Robert Palmer, 1949
Paula Deen, 1947
Dolly Parton, 1946
Shelley Fabares, 1944
Janis Joplin, 1943
Michael Crawford, 1942
Phil Everly, 1939
Tippi Hedren, 1931
Jean Stapleton, 1923
Guy Madison, 1922
John H. Johnson, 1918
Lester Flatt, 1914
Paul Cezanne, 1839
Edgar Allan Poe, 1809
Robert E. Lee, 1807

Today in History:

Rouen surrenders to Henry V of England completing his reconquest of Normandy, 1419
San Agustin Church in Manila is officially completed; it is currently the oldest church in the Philippines, 1607
The second group of ships of the First Fleet arrives at Botany Bay, 1788
The United Kingdom occupies the Cape of Good Hope, 1806
Goethe's Faust Part I premiers, 1829
Verdi's Il Trivatore preniers in Rome, 1853
The first electric lighting system employing overhead wires, built by Thomas Edison, begins service at Roselle, New Jersey, 1883
Ibsen's play The Master Builder premiers in Berlin, 1893
Georges Claude patents the neon discharge tube for use in advertising, 1915
The US Senate votes against membership in League of Nations, 1920
Coopers Inc. sells the world's first briefs, 1930
For the only time in recorded history, snow falls in Miami, Florida, 1977
The last VW Beetle made in Germany leaves the plant, 1978
United States and Iranian officials sign an agreement to release 52 American hostages after 14 months of captivity, 1981
The Apple Lisa, the first commercial personal computer from Apple Inc. to have a graphical user interface and a computer mouse, is announced, 1983
Czech Republic and Slovakia join the United Nations, 1993
The New Horizons probe is launched by NASA on the first mission to Pluto, 2006


  1. Well, Mimi, I know you have to be so frustrated. It can't be pleasant to have cracked and painful fingers, and I am sure that the prospect of biopsies is scary. I hope that you respond to the topical treatment and thus have a simple solution.


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