20 June 2021

Michelin man is still alive and kicking

Well, two weeks on from my last post and I'm accumulating more plasters and making Michelin man look positively naked! The broken toe continues to be bound up with the adjacent one, but is not too much of an inconvenience. I have mastered the art of going up and down my five flights of stairs to even get a cup of tea without putting too much pressure on it. Thankfully I can still drive too. I have not been out walking to get fresh air, as I don't think I could manage too far a distance without it telling me it's there, but, all in all, I am managing well.


the cyst on my back has not been so compliant. It started to erupt more and more and become so painful that I could not comfortably lean back on a chair, bed or car seat. The 7-day course of extra-strong antibiotics I had been prescribed at my local urgent-care walk-in centre had done nothing to deflate it.  In desperation, I went back to the urgent-care centre last weekend to get some more antibiotics. The doctor I saw decided surgical removal of the cyst was the only option, as cysts can build impenetrable walls around them, making it difficult for antibiotics to penetrate, as was obviously the case here. He rang the surgical team at the parent hospital to warn them he was sending me. However, as it was late on Saturday evening, they told him I would only be waiting around all night, as they were extremely busy and likely to be on Sunday too, so advised I best turn up nice and early on Monday morning.

A neighbour kindly agreed to take me, as parking can be a nightmare at the hospital and I did not have a timed appointment nor know how long I would be. On arrival at the Surgical Assessment Unit I seemed to be the only one there and was seen very quickly by the consultant surgeon. He was very odd and proceeded to deal with me in gesticulations and grunts. His English was not brilliant when he did speak and by the look of him, he should have been long retired. He was not very forthcoming on explaining things or giving me a management plan, so I had to drag information out of him which tended to be monosyllabic. To cut a long story short, a much younger man did the procedure of cutting out the cyst, on occasion advised by grunts from the consultant. Despite six needles of local anaesthetic circling the cyst, the whole procedure was extremely painful and I ended up digging my fingernails into my palms to get through it. (My daughter later explained that the cyst walls again can prevent anaesthetic reaching the area to numb it). For ten minutes or so, although it felt like ten hours, the young surgeon snipped round  perimeter of the cyst to remove it. 

They packed the open wound with gauze and asked me to return the next day. I spent the most excruciating 24 hours not able to get comfortable. The pain was 15/10 Not even codeine could suppress the pain and I was not a happy bunny. However, on Tuesday when I went back, they removed the packing and the relief was instantaneous. The pain immediately plummeted to 0/10. They did not stitch the wound but instead Manuka honey cream was put into the open wound to help it heal from the inside outwards. I was advised to have the dressing changed every other day at my GP surgery. That in itself has been problematic as my GP surgery could not do that for over a week. There is no way I can do it myself as it is on my back below my shoulder blade and so difficult to reach. However, I have been able to bully to get appointments (not easy in these covid-restricted times) at the urgent care centre and also the hospital again to get the dressings changed. I am pleased to say that it looks as if it is on the mend. 

Now I just need to sort out the broken toe....

Before - swelling to the size of a walnut
Picture taken by Kay

During - showing the packing

After - wound healing nicely.
Picture taken by consultant

1 comment:

Yorkshire Pudding said...

Oh dear! That cyst sounds very nasty. I admire your bravery in enduring the pain and your persistence in getting treatment and vital after-care. Let's hope that it is all cleared up now and does not return. Sounds like you were rather lucky when you slipped on the kitchen floor. It could have been a lot worse.