I know there was a song my music teacher taught our class back in elementary school, one that had a catchy tune to help us remember which bones were connected to each other. I can still hear the jingle in my head, but I can’t remember all the words…”The hip bones connected to the ? bone….”
That song had been hidden someplace in the dark recesses of my mind until just about a week ago, when I had to do a quick refresher course in human anatomy.
I’ve been unable to walk or drive since the incident at Kohl’s a month ago, when my right leg simply stopped working. The pain in that area — hip, groin, pelvis — has been worsening, so finally, last Friday, my oncologist decided to take some Xrays of both hips, my pelvis and both femur bones to find out what’s going on.
The female pelvis, aka sacrum, has a ring of bone with a superior and inferior bone. (I’m doing my best to describe this based on notes from my doctor and Wikipedia, but I’m no MD, so take that into consideration.) I have a crack in both parts of the ring, which is what my doctor believes happened at Kohl’s that day, causing my leg to “go out” and the ongoing, excruciating pain in my groin. The good news is, although that area is extremely painful and I am walking with a cane, it does appear to be healing, based on the Xrays.
The area of concern right now is my right femur bone, aka, the thigh bone. I’ve just learned that it’s the largest, longest bone in the human body, and that it can bear up to 30 times the weight of a human being under normal circumstances.
My circumstances are far from normal, of course, and I have to be really careful to bear as little weight on my right thigh bone as possible. Xrays show a cancerous lesion on that bone that could cause it to break relatively easily. That would be a nightmare.
So, my oncologist has scheduled an appointment for me tomorrow at 12:15 to discuss my options. Basically, there are three: I can have a pin surgically placed to give my femur some extra strength while it’s healing, we can try to radiate the lesion and allow my bone to heal as the lesion shrinks and disappears, or we can do nothing, and wait for the Xeloda (chemo) and the Xgeva (once a month shot to strengthen my bones) to do their job. We shall see what the orthopedic surgeon’s opinion on the matter is, then we’ll immedately regroup with my oncologist and make a decision.
I am going through a storm with gale-force winds and only a tiny ship to protect me right now. The water pours down, funneling off the hood of my bright yellow rain gear, and the rough seas splash gallons of salt water to and fro across the ship’s deck. Yet, I have not capsized and don’t anticipate that I will. My doctors call what I’m going through right now an “acute phase” of my disease, and everyone is working as fast as they can to get me to land, where I hope to once again be able to walk sandy beaches with confidence.
I do believe I see a shoreline in the distance, but I’ve got a ways to go. I’m praying this phase will end sooner, rather than later, and that I’ll be up and around, able to not just dress myself, but dance a jig, go for a walk in the park, maybe even sled down a hill if winter decides to arrive. Right now, I’d be thrilled just to be able to push a grocery cart, rather than ride in a scooter. But one step at a time.
I’ll keep you updated on what we decide following tomorrow’s appointment. In the meantime, please keep us in your prayers.
Copyright 2012, Amy Rauch Neilson