Thursday, April 24, 2014

Surgery and the Hips - Part 6

A lot of things have happened since Part 5. Around mid-January, I went from 10% weightbearing to 50% for two weeks, then finally full weightbearing. Fortunately, I'm now in outpatient physical therapy. That last "snowstorm" we had was barely a dusting two days before my appointment.

Then the DC area had FIVE snowstorms. The area school systems had snow days that were 3-5 times more than they were last year. Two of the storms caused my surgeon appointments to be cancelled and postponed. I never went out until the snow and ice melted. I was NOT going to go back to the hospital in pain if I was to fall and dislocate my new hip joint.

And no infection as of the end of January, what with my taking antibiotics for 4 weeks after the November surgery. That plus the infectious diseases doctor said they kept my tissue/blood sample for a bit longer time, about 10 days, to make sure there was no infection.

Now I can do things that I had to put off.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Hearing Aids in the Wrong Places - Part 2

It's not just orange juice that does strange things to hearing aids, but also sugary drinks and coffee. Massive amounts of water, either hot or cold, will do it. A boiled hearing aid sounds clean and germ-free, but let's face it... That's enough heat to most likely melt the case and some electronics as will time in the microwave. Radio Shack or any other electronics houses don't have anything small enough for a replacement.

Water flumes count in terms of massive amounts of water, which leads to her having a good point related to roller coasters if they have water ponds around or just plain rocky areas. Then there's all the feet around. But don't forget other amusement park rides. I mention in Hearing Aids vs Humans of my being on a roller coaster and in Growing up Deaf - Part 7, the hearing aid encounters the toilet...

We've never seen a fish wear a hearing aid, so we know we can't tuna fish (tune a fish). Just make sure the hearing aid never makes it to the bathroom, either worn or unworn. You do know what Part 7 said above...? A flush is all it takes to lose the thing.

And the final thing you never want to see your hearing aid is heading at high speed away from you, shot from something like a slingshot or a projectile weapon. Its final destination could be in massive amounts of water, somewhere between a rock and a hard place, smack in the grille of a speeding Mack truck, or part of someone's BBQ.

The same thing can easily apply to the cochlear implant's external part.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Hearing Aids in the Wrong Places - Part 1

But of course, we all know there's places to never put a hearing aid. Jennifer Stuessy's The 10 most dangerous places for a hearing aid has a good listing, but probably is missing a few places we never think about.

She mentions never to put it on a nightstand, but inside. Or better yet, never place it out in the open in an area where there's a lot of things being picked up, put down, spilled, sprayed, including the kitchen sink. It's rather easy to sweep the hearing aid on the floor or crushed on a hard surface like a table. And then when it hits the floor and you have a cat that loves to bat things around... Fried and bat-tered hearing aids, anyone? Here at home we've still not found all the balls our cat's hidden.

You do know you can't drink ground hearing aid (from a garbage disposal or coffee grinder) even if you put it into the coffeemaker?

Next - Part 2

Monday, April 14, 2014

Hospitals and the Deaf Patient - Part 2

In Part 1, I mention in the last paragraph:

"In this day of high tech and the Internet, there's no excuse for anyone to claim it's difficult to contact the deaf person when there's also email, texting, and instant messaging besides the relay. A little low tech like keeping paper and pen around goes a long way as well."

When I had home health care, rather than use the relay to play phone tag with each other, we used texting. It's worked so well that I could easily refer back to the texts as a reminder or the physical therapist could easily change a session date and time. I'd also be in contact with the supervisor/office manager when it came to signing paperwork and evaluations.

Also after the third surgery, I got emails from the doctor's office a few times telling me of a change in medication dosage. This allowed me to better acknowledge I got the email and would act on the dosage change.

I've kept copies of my xrays from the knee surgeries and from the three hip surgeries, which also makes it easier for me to pass on what I have to another doctor. The hip surgeon's office has a patient portal which allows me to watch for upcoming bill payments, make a payment, make an appointment online, med refills, and other things.

On a more lighthearted note, the physical therapist and I used "markers" from torn postcards to show how many laps I did in the walking exercises (Surgery and the Hips - Part 5). Now and then one of us will lose track of how many laps I've done.