My Title of Liberty

     "In Memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children." - Alma 46:12    

My Medical History

(chronological order)


I was born on June 15, 1948 at Salem Hospital in Salem, Marion County, Oregon.

1950?:
When I was still quite young, I was diagnosed as pigeon-toed. A doctor had me walk on the outsides of my feet to strengthen them, but it seemed to stretch the muscles instead of tighten them, for soon I could practically walk on the tops of my feet. As I was growing up, I had first leather arch support inserts, then fiberglass. I was never sure how much any of them helped. My ankles remained weak and my feet ached at night.

1957:
I broke my right wrist while scuffling with another boy in a yard behind my mother's diner. It was put in a cast until it healed.

1966:
When I graduated from High School (165 lbs), I continued gaining weight at about 9 lbs per year, though I had stopped growing taller. I thought it was a change in my metabolism.

1969:
When I was in Basic Training in the Army, I was unable to meet the minimum physical training requirements in the P.T. tests. These included running a mile in under six minutes and several other events. I was sent to a Special Training Company for a few weeks to get me in shape. There I was diagnosed with sprained knees given aspirin, and told to go back to whatever I was doing. After several weeks, I was given, but didn't earn, passing scores and sent back to a regular Basic Company.

While in the Army, I had my eyes tested. The left eye was 20/15, the right was 20/13, both better than "normal".

1977:
In August 1977, I developed thrombophlebitis in my right thigh after returning from a long bus trip. I missed work for a while to keep my leg elevated.

1979:
In November 1979, I was in an auto accident, broke my right femur, collapsed a lung, got a deep gash under my right eye, and fractured a bone in my foot, though the last went undiscovered for a while. When they reset the femur with a steel pin, they said it was crooked and reset it again. To this day it is crooked, skewed to the right, so that now both feet turn to the right (like having two left feet).

1980:
As the leg healed, I developed arthritis in my joints, notably my feet, knees, and hands. When I turned my ankle badly, a podiatrist showed me the arthritis in my feet (and a bone spur on my heel) in an X-ray. I began using a walking stick to help if I should turn my ankle or my knee gave out suddenly.

I was diagnosed as hypertensive (having high blood pressure).

1990?:
About 1990, my eyesight worsened and I was prescribed reading glasses. I was told my far vision was 20/20. I thought "So this is 20/20? How do people live like this?"

1992:
In late 1992, I developed edema in my lower legs and feet. The doctor prescribed HydrChloroThiaZide (HCTZ) and arranged for me to get a pair of support stockings.

1995:
After moving to Portland at the end of 1994. My family saw a woman doctor who reminded me of a drill sergeant from the Army. We never went back to her, but depended upon Neighborhood Clinics for a while.

1997:
A Nurse Practitioner at the clinic prescribed Metoprolol for my high blood pressure, telling me it could cause "impotence", and sent me to the Providence Ambulatory Care & Education (P.A.C.E.) clinic where I was seen by a Dr. Chris Kauffman.
In July, I was diagnosed as diabetic (type II). I began taking oral medication and controlling my diet better. I also had a serious spell where I thought I might pass out, while waiting for a traffic light. The hospital checked me out, including an angiogram, but found no cause for it.

1998:
On June 9, I underwent a sleep study at Providence Hospital to see if I had any serious sleep problems like apnea, snoring, breathing stoppage, etc. I had some apnea, but nothing they considered serious. I didn't sleep very well.

1999:
Dr. Kauffman finished his training and moved back east to start a private practice. I was afterwards seen by his mentor, Dr. Rosenberg.

By 1999, I had developed E.D. At first, I blamed it on the metoprolol that I was taking for my hypertension, but later, after quitting that medication for a while for economic reasons, I  learned that it was probably caused by my diabetes, and should be correctable with other medication.

Also in 1999, I started losing weight (my maximum was 376 lbs), mostly due to reducing the portions that I ate.

2000:
In December, while going through a divorce, I developed neuropathy in my feet and in the ring finger and little finger of my left hand.

2001:
I got an infection in my right big toe. The doctor tried antibiotics, but the infection reached the bone and most of my big toe had to be amputated (Sept 16). I was prescribed a walker to keep some of the weight off my feet.

2002:
I got a sore on another toe. I went to the Wound Care Clinic to have it treated until my insurance ran out, but it healed on its own after that. In December, another sore began on what was left of the amputated toe and I cleaned and dressed it as well as I could on my own.

2003:
After my Unemployment benefits ran out, I qualified for the Oregon Health Plan and chose a Primary Care Physician whose office was right across the street from my (rented) house. He put me back on medications for my hypertension and diabetes and arranged for Home Health nurses to come to the house and care for the wound. I was to stay off my feet as much as possible.

2004:
When it was apparent there was no improvement in the toe, I was sent to a podiatrist. He decided a bone left by the previous amputation was pressing on the sore, preventing it from healing over. He amputated it near the end of April.

- EVERGREEN -

I was placed in a nursing facility (Evergreen) while it healed, supposedly for two weeks, as I couldn't put any weight on it at all for a while. The facility was able to get Medicaid to cover my stay.

It soon became apparent that I could not take care of myself on my own, with my medical conditions and having no other means of support. I applied for, and received, Social Security Disability benefits. Medicaid paid for an eye exam and for the trifocals that were prescribed for me.

In August 2004, I was apparently bitten by a spider on my right arm near the wrist and it took antibiotics  and nearly a month to heal up.

In September, I was told that my HDL (good cholesterol) was very low and was prescribed Niacin, which caused "hot flash"-like reactions which lasted up to four hours at a time every day.

In November, I was told that my LDL (bad cholesterol) was too high (the rules had changed) and was prescribed Lovastatin.

- FOSTER CARE -

On September 11, 2006, when I moved to Kim's Adult Foster Care, I was transferred to a new doctor. I had my first appointment with him on October 3rd. He reviewed my medications and made some adjustments. He said I should have orthopedic shoes.

In mid-November, after my House Manager inquired about my meds and some other issues, We got a fax from the doctor's office indicating that he did not know what medications I was taking. We were not happy with that, at all. She suggested I change my health care to Providence Elderplace. The week before Thanksgiving I visited the Gresham facility and signed up with them to handle my health care. They have activities downstairs and a clinic upstairs.

On November 25th, the day after returning from a bus trip to Salem for Thanksgiving, I discovered phlebitis in my lower left thigh. I began keeping my leg elevated. Two days later, I discovered an abcess above my left ankle. On the 30th, I was seen by my doctor at Elderplace who looked at my thigh and ankle and put me on an antibiotic.

In December, my Elderplace doctor saw that I got a flu shot, an EKG, blood tests, a pneumonia shot, a dental checkup, an ultrasound of my legs (no clots were found), new support hose (more comfortable and durable than the ones I got through Evergreen), an appointment to have my last prescription glasses adjusted so I could use them, a podiatrist visit (he had me soak my feet in Epsom salt and warm water), my ears cleaned of wax, and an echocardiogram. They changed the dressing on my abcess on Thursdays at Elderplace, and had my caregiver do it during the week.

2007:
On January 4, I was fitted for orthopedic shoes.
On January 25, I was given a tetanus shot.
On January 27, I underwent a sleep study at Providence Hospital to see if I had any serious sleep problems like apnea, snoring, breathing stoppage, etc. I didn't sleep very well, maybe only 3 to 4 hours.
On January 31, I received my diabetic/orthopedic shoes.
On November 1st, 2007, I got my flu shot while at Ederplace for my regular visit.

2008:
On May 22, 2008, I was driven to the Troutdale Vision Clinic for an eye examination. My right eye is 20/20 with my glasses. My left eye has "epiretinal fibrosis superior to the macula". The doctor says they can do nothing about it. He says there is no sign of diabetes in my eyes. I picked a new frame for my next glasses and the doctor made adjustments to them to make them fit my face.