Friday, 1 February 2013

Burying your head in the sand

A fortnight ago, Him Outdoors woke up complaining that he must have done too much energetic walking with sticks because his arms and legs ached. Gradually worsened with both of us not mentioning that perhaps we ought to do something about this but it was the weekend, we had to get across the country to Mum's funeral. Worrying about the snow was bad enough we'll ignore this. (Bury head in the sand no 1)

When he couldn't get himself off the floor on Saturday morning we frightened ourselves and went through the out of hours doctor system. All very efficient and we went to see a very pleasant doctor who had never seen such a thing before, it didn't fit any of the usual combinations of symptoms, she would recommend we see a neurologist but not at the weekend and in her opinion it wouldn't get worse and we could go to the funeral.

So, weakness in all four limbs at once, no pain, no numbness, no tingling, sudden onset, no illness, no muscle fatigue, blood pressure slightly high but not very.

Able to drive perfectly well, in fact enjoyed feeling like himself, but stairs were difficult and much to his childrens' delight, lifting a pint required two hands - someone helpfully brought him a straw. Had some quite severe shoulder pain in the night which we put down to all the different muscles he was using to lug himself about and how awkwardly he was holding himself on occasion. (Bury head in the sand no 2)

When we got home again we saw a GP in our practice who also had never seen such a thing, how interesting. Again didn't think anything would be solved by being in hospital or anything dramatic but a neurologist might be good. No it wasn't any of the horrors we had been googling.

Meanwhile we have a ferry booked and given up our rented house in England so nowhere to live...............

So we arrive back in France and visit our local doctor.

Your blood pressure is very high, the shoulder pain is arthritis, go and have this raft of blood tests. (In France, the blood test you have in the morning has it's results on the internet in the afternoon.)

Back to the doctor with results. I think your body is tired take this tonic of quinine and B6 every day and come back in a month. (Bury head in the sand no 3)

What interests me is that both English GPs were quite happy to admit that they were ignorant and were interested in him. The French guy also has no clue but his reaction is to throw medicine at it.

Being us, and given that it is improving slightly every day and it is only a fortnight after it started, we will continue to bury our head in the sand. And hope it just goes away.


  1. I'm a great believer in head burying....I had a super German doctor when young who said that most things go away in a fortnight...after that it's off to the hospital for every test under the sun.

    So far experience bears out his advice...

    Fingers crossed.

  2. Sounds like a virus to me, Rosie, and my super young German GP would concur with Helen's. Glad he is feeling better, but it couldn't have happened at a worse time for you.