pain in the…face: part five

I am a happy, positive person for the most part. I don’t worry about things I can’t control. It would be nice not to have experienced the effects of two major illnesses, especially the herpes zoster. I live with many more after effects from that disease than I do Wegener’s granulomatosis, which, ironically, is the more serious (potentially fatal) disease of the two. But live with those after effects I do.

The charge doctor at the regional hospital where I had initial treatment for shingles told me, “You’ll wear a beard after this,” in reference to the scars. I mumbled some obscenity under my breath at his blunt comment, which he delivered with a smirk. He was right, though it isn’t to hide scars so much as to distract others so they don’t bring up the reality I live with 24/7, something I am aware of without outside reminders!

It is possible to forget about the pain and scars if I involve myself in my videos or blogs, or when I am with friends or family. I sleep well, even without pain medication, though there are rare times a few aspirin help. A little baby oil on the scar helps loosen it up a bit, too. That helps reduce the discomfort, that perpetual tightness on the right side of my face.

The scarring impairs tear formation in the right eye, so I occasionally have pain associated with dryness. When I cry, only the left eye overflows. If I cut onions, the right eye can’t wash away the sting by itself. I have to manually flush it until the pain goes away. An itch forms in the corner of that eye that can be so severe I go nuts trying to stop it! It’s hard to scratch an eyeball itch, though the old standby of splashing cold water on the eye works best to break the pain signal to my brain.

Do you remember that old joke about the missing dog with one eye, three legs, no tail, and goes by the name of Lucky? Some days I feel like Lucky, but the mood quickly shifts when I see my little guys, Andy and Dougy, or I find a comment on one of my videos or blogs. Faith and a good attitude are major helps, too!

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I didn’t wake up this morning with the idea that I’d write about this personal issue. The pain this morning was a bit more severe than usual, and I needed to work through it, however I could. I feel better now! My fingers are a little sore from typing is all.

Since I probably am an expert of some order on the topic, I can share my experience with you. Talk with your doctor about the shingles shot. I don’t think they recommend it yet for people under 60. There’s a one in three chance you will get it. The pain is excruciating. You don’t want to experience it, believe me! Most people don’t have permanent damage as severe as I have. If you have an outbreak on your face, there is high risk to life itself. If it follows your optic nerve back to your brain, you better have your affairs in order! Here’s one site you can learn more about shingles:

http://www.cdc.gov/shingles/index.html

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11 thoughts on “pain in the…face: part five

  1. When I initially commented I appear to have clicked the
    -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now
    every time a comment is added I recieve 4 emails with the same comment.
    Perhaps there is a way you are able to remove
    me from that service? Thank you!

    • I know exactly the problem you mention, and I have the same issue with several blogs I follow.

      The only ways I know to avoid this is to change your preferences by unsubscribing, then resubscribing, only not checking the notify for new comments box. Also, there is a place in [Dashboard][Blogs I Follow] where you can review all the blogs you follow and reset your preferences with regards notifications. The latter is more for mass changes if you decide to limit which blogs you want to stop getting comment notifications for.

      I don’t think either method, however, does exactly what you (and I) want to do to avoid tedious amounts of e-mails, yet notification of new content we do want to see. At this popint, I go through all my e-mails looking for the key word “commented” in the early part of the description, then I mark it for deletion. After I’ve marked all the e-mails identified as [Comment] or “[So-and-so] commented…” for deletion, I do a mass deletion.

      Gad, it’s tedious! I had to drop one blog because the guy wrote several a day (he has a disability, so the blog was his way of using the time), all bringing in dozens of comments. I was deleting hundreds of comments notifications a week, and ended up with virtually no time for much of anything else.

      Frankly, if anyone reading this has a better, less time-consuming way to do this, I’d like to know, and so would donut friend.

  2. Believe it or not, you don’t just have to be in your 50’s and 60’s, although those age groups are certainly hit harder. My young friend was 17 when he experienced a horrible shingles outbreak. The doctor said it was from having a mild case of chicken pox when he was 4. Poor kid had to take prescription pain meds as well as Valtrex. But he really suffered. Get the shot!

    • Thanks for bringing this up. One of the nurses caring for me when I was hospitalized with shingles had a horrendous case at age 17. She was blind and deaf because of it, conditions that lasted a month, then cleared up. I can only imagine how frightening that was for a young person. She said the experience is what guided her into a career in nursing. Need I say she was a super nurse!?

      • omg, at least you had a kind, sympathetic, and understanding nurse when you went through this. My young friend had a rash all over the left side of his back. It looked like he’d been burned. The kids now are lucky that they have the chicken pox vaccine. Perhaps it will cut down on shingles cases. Woof! Love, Maggie the Pitbull

  3. Reblogged this on Contrafactual and commented:
    I will be reblogging these first person accounts of shingles as an incentive to those of us in our 50s and 60s to get the herpes zoster vaccine …
    Although they don’t recommend it for folks under 60, I personally know of several folls who got it in their 50s.

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