"The Rumors of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated"

August 26, 2011 By Lauren and Tom

It’s seems like a special occasion to quote Mark Twain.

I’ve been to the ER exactly twice in the past 10 years excluding two visits (and both was quite needed) for The Crash last June; which is a feat considering my chosen sport for the duration of the last 15 years.  I’ve been to Urgent Care exactly once in Indianapolis in the 7 years I’ve lived here as well; so emergency care isn’t something I rush too whenever I get a cut or scrape, it takes a lot to bring me down; let alone to the point where I get heavy treatment for something.

didn’t get to have anything nearly as cool as this conversation with the culprit..
So, last Saturday I woke up and noticed I had a bite/pimple/irritation on my right elbow.  It’s right on top of a bunch of scar tissue from crashes over the years and it can occasionally be a bit sensitive.   I didn’t think anything of it and we went to Bloomington.  Sunday it seemed to be a bit angrier and there was some fluid, so I did the logical thing and sterilized a needle and lanced it trying to drain it and was shocked that didn’t provide relief.  By Sunday night it was even more swollen and I couldn’t sleep with the pain in the elbow.  Lauren urged me to go to urgent care and it was on my list, but it got away from me on Monday and I was kicking myself Monday night because it was even more painful.  Tuesday was much a repeat of Monday and I had taken some meds to make the swelling go down, but as soon as it wore off I was back to where I started and the urgent cares had already closed for the night.  Another restless night of sleep and I was hurting on all accounts rolling into Wednesday.

Wednesday afternoon I’m sitting at my desk and had a long sleeve shirt on; the arm is still hurting and around 2:30 I take off the shirt and see my whole arm is visibly swollen from shoulder to hand and is getting worse by the minute.  I finally drive to Urgent Care, and as soon as I walk in the receptionist grabs a nurse and doctor for me; the conversation went something like this:

Me: “yeah, it’s been tender since Saturday, but the arm just swelled up in the last two hours”
Doctor: “yes; that’s not right, you need to go to the ER and get there now.  Are you able to drive there yourself?”
Me: “Yep, on my way to Methodist”(as I think to myself that Lauren wins this round by having told me 48 hours ago to get this taken care of)

Was down at Methodist by 3:15 and got checked in; asked if our favorite nurse Kelly (with us for The Crash/The Wedding) was working and was told she was and they would send her out for me.  Got to chat with her and catch up and was taken back pretty quick for treatment.  The doctor pumped me full of meds on an IV, lanced and cleaned it out, ordered a culture, and wrote me a script for a heavy course of antibiotics and sent me home with directions on what to do if it didn’t resolve.

The pictures taken by L….thanks for catching my better side…
I did have shorts on, this wasn’t my attempt at indecent exposure
I pull off the gown quite well..
We aren’t quite sure what caused it; could be a spider bite or something like a sweat gland that got infected.  All I know is that as usual “the funny bone isn’t so funny”, and that the pain from this has been much worse than anything I’ve felt from losing skin in crashes over the years and that healing process. 

The upside is; if it was a spider bite I’m hoping that this is the result:

at this point in time; I would need the right arm to be twice the size as the left to allow for the swelling

Fingers crossed it resolves itself; I’m not seeing a ton of progress yet and am giving it another 24 hours before I follow up; mainly the whole arm being swollen still thing is throwing my for a loop and it still looking really angry. 

Until then…I’ll be figuring out which Spiderman costume I like the most and which Spidey Senses I have:
Thanks Google Images
Sadly, it forced me to take a mulligan on The Challenge Wednesday as I hadn’t prepared to spend the afternoon in the ER; so after consulting with the 45 Day Challenge judge (me), I’ve been given permission to put an extra day on The Challenge and use it as a light ride to recover from my 4 hour ride on the 15th.