Tag Archives: Gout

My left hand

You know what sucks?  Gout.  Gout sucks.  I’ve been dealing with it for years and years in my legs.  But a week ago, it hit me in my left hand.  I woke up to a hand that was swollen and felt like it was crushed with a sledge hammer.
I can not articulate just how much it hurt.  This was truly the worst pain I’ve ever felt in my life.  I’ve had gunshots, stabs, and broken bones that did not hurt nearly this bad.
Here I am a week later, and with proper meds, the hand is no longer swollen.  Well, it’s almost back to normal.  But the movement in the index finger has not fully returned.  I have some movement, but it’s still very restricted.  Typing is is a 9 fingered affair right now.  The pain is mostly gone too… Unless I move my finger or bump it or look at it wrong.  The main joint in the hand that works that index finger, it’s still a bit swollen and painful… it feels like there is some serious damage in there.

Anyone giving me Gout Advice – I’ll bitchslap you next time I see you.  Just sayin.

So why am I bringing this up?

Guns.
Manipulating guns one handed has taught me a lot.  Even just “Strong Hand Only”.  Sounds easy… It’s not.  Not without some practice.  Not without some serious practice.  Handguns.  AR-15’s.  Lever Actions.  Surprisingly, what I had the most problems with… my 870’s.  I need more practice with this.
Say you catch a bullet in your hand.  Or some other injury that renders your off hand useless… a burn or something.  If you don’t know what to do before… hand… sorry… You are going to be stumbling.  You need to know what to do before it happens.
So this weekend, your Training Assignment.   All weekend long.  One Hand Manipulations Handling.  If you have to, tape all your fingers together to remind you.  No cheating.  For me, cheating felt like someone hit my hand with a baseball bat.  Easy for me to remember not to cheat.  For you guys – Honor Code.
Admin Loading.
Reloading.
Press Check.
Holstering.
With all your main line fighting guns.

Report back with what you learned.

 

Ride to work… Get a Ride home.

I hate it when my Wife is Right.  Grrr…

This morning, she said, “You shouldn’t ride, I’ll give you a lift in.”

Oh no… I’m big tough biker… I can ride!!!  *Beats Chest*

Let me back up and give you some background here.  Saturday night my right knee really starting hurting.  Sunday morning, I woke up to a knee that would not bend. Pain.  Lots of pain.  Gout attack in the knee.  So I was on the couch or in bed all day.  Same story with Monday.  Same with Tuesday… but Tuesday night it was getting better.  Today, Wednesday morning I felt pretty good again.  “I can ride!” I said, and watched he drive into town in the Explorer as I put on my helmet.  Got a leg over the ZX-11, backed it up no problem.   Rolled forward… Oh Crap.  I can’t get my foot on the peg.  So I rode all the way into town with my right foot off the peg.  That’s not easy, but I couldn’t get it on the peg.  My knee wouldn’t bend.

I pull into work… Wife pulls in after me.  Having seen my foot hanging of course.  She did not say “Told you so.”  She knew she didn’t have to.   I hate it when she’s right.

After work…. my knee was killing me.  My left knee even started hurting.  So I limped the bike over to my Sister In Law’s, and parked it.  Called her up and she came and got me.

When we got home I looked at her and said “I can ride the KTM to work tomorrow… I can stand up on the pegs.”  Oh man… she was pissed!

BTW – I don’t need any Gout advice.  My hell every time I say Gout I get every form of home remedy suggestion and that’s about as annoying as my wife being right.  So… stuff that jazz.  I’m going to see the Bonesaw tomorrow.  Maybe get some Cortisone injections.

Oh, if anyone has a Can Am Spyder they are willing to trade for a ZX-11… Yeah, I’ll trade you right now.  Next week?  I don’t know, but right now I’d trade you.

Dudes, I seriously would not wish Gout pain on anyone… not even those few people still alive that I call my enemies.  Gout pain is insidious.  It’s basically God saying “I don’t like you.”  It hurts on a level that you just don’t understand unless you’ve had it.  No, I’m serious.  I’ve been shot.  Stabbed.  I’ve broken many bones.  I’d opt for another Gun Shot Wound over Gout Pain.   Because with Gout – there is nothing you can do about it.  There is no Position of Comfort, especially in the Knee.  In a Toe or Ankle, Gout is Hideous shit.  In the knee…. No… That’s God punishing you for something.  That’s a taste of Torment from Hell.  OTC Pain Meds… They don’t work unless you Combo them Up.  And when you do that, you have to be careful.

You don’t know Pain, until you know Gout Pain.

“It’s kind of like Gout.”  Dude… If you have never had a Gout attack… you have no idea what Gout is like. So don’t even think you know. Having a Gout attack is like joining an exclusive club. “Those who know”. Let me tell you something… you don’t want to be a Member.  Ever.  I’ve had crushed bones. I’ve shattered my ankles. I’ve torn out my knees. I’ve dislocated and torn my shoulder. I’ve been shot. I’ve been stabbed. I’ve been bitten by snake, dog, human, and cat. I’ve been sucker punched. Tasered. I’ve been hit in the head with a beer bottle. I’ve been kicked in the junk. None of that pain… none of it… comes close to what Gout is like. If someone said, “Okay Ogre, you can have a Gout attack or you can take a bullet from a .357 Magnum.” Seriously, I’d take the bullet. No, I’m not kidding and I’m not exaggerating.  And if you have had a Gout attack – you know exactly what I am talking about.

When the weight of a light bed sheet on your foot is too much agony… when the pain keeps you up all night. I mean, Zero sleep because nothing touches, relieves, or does a dang thing to help the pain… Shocking, Sharp, Unyielding, Hellish, Torture. You can’t touch your foot. Not even a light touch. Gout is the worst pain I have ever experienced. With a broken bone, you can often find a “Position of Comfort” some way to rest where there is no pain or a reduced amount of pain. With Gout – there is none of that.
So if you never had a Gout attack – don’t you dare tell me that something is like Gout.

They say Pain is the sign that something is wrong.  Gout Pain is the sign that God Hates you.

What is Gout? It’s basically a crystalline infection. Crystals build up in the joints of a localized area, most of the time in a foot, but sometimes in hands, elbows, knees, could be anywhere. It’s caused by the build up of Uric Acid. Too much Uric Acid builds up, crystals start to form.  These crystals look like needles under a microscope.  Literally, they are tiny needles.  Thousands of them in that area that is hurting.  Those crystals cause bone and tissue damage, pain, and swelling, and more pain.  The swelling alone would cause plenty of pain.  But the damage the crystals are doing, even more pain.  Combined… you have Gout Pain.  Personally, I think the Crystals are magic and open a portal to the 7th level of Hell and a demon bites you though the portal. Bites down and doesn’t let go.

Uric Acid levels are a result of proteins that are not being processed out by the Liver and Kidneys.  There different reasons for this. But mostly it comes down to poor diet and not enough water. You eat a protein rich diet, drink too much alcohol or soft drinks, and you can build up enough Uric Acid in your blood to cause a Gout Attack.

I have this problem because my liver was severely damaged years ago due to trauma, and then later due to my abuse of OTC pain relievers trying to deal with unrelenting migraines. In fact, this liver damage almost killed me. Well, the migraines are no longer the 2 or 3 times a week visitor that they used to be for so many years (since I was 14) but the liver damage remains… this translates into overworked kidneys dealing with proteins that are not broken down right, and that results in a build up of the Uric Acid… and I get a Gout attack. That and I am chronically always dehydrated because I don’t drink enough water.

In a previous life I must have been horribly cruel to puppies.

In short, Gout sucks. Gout makes you look at a Chop Saw with a raised eyebrow and a thought that maybe it’s worth it.  A quick zip of the saw, a little bleeding, and the hellish torture will go away. Maybe it will.  For awhile.  But the Uric Acid level is in your blood.  Which means the Gout Crystals will build up again in a different location.  It will come back. Gout is insidious.  Gout is a Demon.  He will hide for awhile, let you forget about him. But once he’s attacked, he will attack again one day.

But that’s not the worst part. The worst is when you mention Gout… Everyone knows how to deal with it.  Because they know someone who has it and all the sudden they are the freaking expert on the subject, even though they themselves have never had it.
Screw those guys.  If they haven’t had Gout, they don’t know.  Next guy that tells me I should just eat Celery is going to get Throat Punched.

Celery Seed Extract.  Cherry Juice.  Grape Seed Extract.  Drink lots of Water.  Yeah, that’s all great… but none of that is going to help deal with an acute attack.  Those are things you add to your diet to keep it from happening again… or staving off an oncoming attack when you start feeling those twinges.  Once a full blown attack is on you… All those bets are off.  You are now in Damage Control Mode.

What can you do?  I will take Advil and Tylenol in combination together.  800 mg of Advil will help start to reduce the swelling that is part of the pain formula working against you.  I’m not a Doctor, so don’t listen to me.  Listen to your Doctor.  Talk to him about it.  But I take 4 Advil and 2 Tylenol Extra Strength.  And I’ll pound water like crazy.

I was told by a Medical Person that this combo is just as good at knocking pain as a Percocet.  Having taken Percocets, and Lortabs, and other medically prescribed narcotic pain relievers… The Advil and Tylenol combo is the best. A lot of people say Alieve is good, but that stuff just doesn’t work for me. If a Doc is going to write a scrip for you, I’d say take Lortab if he gives you the option. Because at least Lortabs will make you sleepy and you’ll be able to rest.
Hopefully he’s giving you something else to help fight the Gout. Allopurinol is a common one, and there are others. But they don’t help you deal with the pain of an acute attack.

Learn to Love Lemons.  You need to help the pills fight the acid. You first need to flush your system to help prevent more Uric Acid from building up.  I was told by a doctor that Citric Acid will latch onto the Uric Acid and help flush it out.  Lemon Juice.  Pure Lemon Juice in water.  No Sugar.  Chug it.  I don’t know if this is true or not, but it’s better than just plain water, so why not. And if it does help, that’s great.

While the attack is acute, you are going to have to grit your teeth and suck up the pain until it subsides.  This can take hours or days… And maybe another week or longer to fade away completely.   While drinking water, you can drink the Cherry Juice, and all the other home remedies which I have to say, really don’t seem to do anything for me. Cherry Juice does, I think, to a small degree. But I don’t know if it’s better than drinking the same amount of just plain water. But I’ve been testing all the other theories out there… and it’s mostly all crap. Don’t buy into it. Seriously, it’s a ton of wasted money.

Don’t drink ANYTHING with High Fructose Corn Syrup. One medical site suggested that ANY FLUID is good. No. It’s not. I’ve found that beverages with HFCS makes things a lot worse. And when I’ve had a Gout Attack, it was usually after a day of drinking a lot of Mt Dew or something else with HFCS. Even when I was eating a low protein diet. I suspect that the HFCS may have more of an effect on Gout than a piece of lean meat. All I know is, that stuff is poison and drinking it causes hell on wheels pain down the road. Drink Water.

To help deal with pain when it’s the worst… Usually in the middle of the night.  There is no sleep.  So don’t try to sleep yet.  Because all you can do is focus on the pain, and that makes it worse.  You gotta get your mind off it.  I’ll play violent video games or watch a movie.  Don’t drink alcohol, that makes it worse and the attack will last a lot longer.  Concentrate on something that will take your mind away from thinking about how much it hurts.   Whatever you do though.  Drink water.  With Lemon Juice in it.  A lot of it.

If you are having a Gout attack, I am truly sorry. I feel for you. Because I know what that is like. I’ve had Gout in both feet, both ankles, both knees, and in my left hand. Oh that was fun… my hand was swollen like a cartoon hand that was hit with a hammer. Huge, red, and unbelievably painful. The worst place to get a Gout attack, I think.

The best way to avoid a Gout Attack is to not feed the demon. Avoid red meats, fatty fish like Sushi Grade Tuna, Shrimp, and anything made from Swine. Bacon, Ham, Pork Loin… You know… All the best foods. Just don’t. Seriously, that Bacon is just not worth the pain. That London Broil, that Prime Rib… Not worth it. Moderation, brothers. This is a lifestyle change. You are going to need to develop a taste for Salads. Others meats that are not mentioned, are still meats and still have protein so they need to be taken in moderation. Don’t skip the family BBQ, just enjoy more of the Slaw and Potato Salad and less of what is going to make you consider cutting off appendages.
Hey, I’m not just saying this… I’ve been living this myself. I’ve been there. It’s not worth it.
Oh, I’ll enjoy a Burger once in awhile… Like maybe once a month. Know what? I enjoy that burger more when I do have one. But don’t get carried away with it. And then I’ll follow up with tons of water and skipping meats altogether for a few days. You don’t have to go completely Vegan. Just be very careful.
And don’t think that “Oh, I’ve not had an attack in a year. I’m fine now!” Don’t. The Gout Demon is still there, sleeping. Waiting for you to slip up again.

Don’t feed the Demon.