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In your November/December 2006 issue, Helen Boreski wrote regarding her husband’s sensitivity on his right side. I was left with the same sensitivity on my right side after my stroke in August 2005. He might be feeling what I feel without being able to describe it.
Any touch on my hand, arm, right side of my back or selective points on my leg feels as though the spot touched has been scalded. The pain was a shock, and I avoided shaking hands and touching anything cold, cool, warm or hot. Sometimes I would gasp aloud. Even trying to hold a cold drink was painful – goodbye iced tea! It feels like my internal thermostat on that side is broken (forever?), and the skin stripped where touched. Neurologists have a name for this because it is so common.
Knowing what it is doesn’t stop it, though it makes it easier to handle. I wish the Boreskis the best.
Mrs. A. M. Coniglio, Survivor
Poughkeepsie, New York
Editors Note: You may want to find out more about thalamic pain (also known as Central Pain Syndrome). We published an extensive article in the September/October 2003 issue that is now available online at strokeassociation.org/scmagazine, or call 1-888-4-STROKE (888-478-7653). You may also want to visit centralpain.org for more information.
I have had numbness for more than eight years now and have tried every medication I could think of. Recently my pulmonary specialist (I also have emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) suggested that I take Xanax.
This medication has been a true blessing for me and has caused this constant numb, tingly feeling to be almost bearable. I hope that it might be a blessing to others who have to endure this weird feeling.
Thank you for Stroke Connection. It is so comforting to hear all the stroke stories. They seem to make mine so insignificant! I was never paralyzed or struck mute, and I can get around using a cane, mostly because my dear, 82-year-old husband does so much for me. God bless him and all the other caregivers for all their loving and unselfish care. I am also 82 years old.
Mary Elliott, Survivor
In September 2001, I suffered two strokes 20 days apart. The second one put me down. I spent some time in the hospital and some time in a nursing home, where I was supposed to get physical therapy (PT). Their PT program was nearly nonexistent, so I bailed out. Unfortunately, I kept going downhill and lost most of the use of my right knee and hip. I was sleeping 20 hours a day and was the color of concrete. In February 2002, an acupuncturist was recommended and I went. After 2½ hours, I went out into his parking lot and skipped! I went once a week for eight more weeks, and then went less and less often. Now I go once a month and take a PT program at a small wellness center. I can’t run, but I can get around and am able still to sell insurance part-time. After all, I am 80 years old.
Acupuncture is 3,500 years old. The needles excite the nerves that create the healing, and there are no side effects. I’ve sent my acupuncturist more than 50 patients, and I smile from ear to ear when they tell me the relief they have received.
Acupuncture is not covered by most insurance plans, and each treatment costs me $80. It is the best money I have ever spent.
Milt Graden, Survivor