Tag Archives: trigger finger

The One Where I Have a Non-MS Symptom

cowboyBizarrely, after a couple of weeks struggling through some kind of random MS flare-up where I’ve experienced every symptom I’ve ever had and then some, I am overjoyed to have something not connected to MS for once.

Before MS, I was pretty healthy (apart from being slightly Rubenesque) – never really had colds, coughs or flu, never had ear infections or a sore throat.

Never blagged days off school as a child, something I often recite to The Teenager when he attempts his best ‘sick-face’.

Now, however, I exist in an odd state of constant observation, or ‘MS Watch’ – did my foot drop that teeny bit more than usual? Why am I walking into walls again? Will the vertigo give it a rest? Will I ever be able to eat spaghetti or use chop-sticks in polite company again?

Anyway, I officially have … stenosing tenosynovitis (impressively medical-sounding), otherwise known as trigger finger (not so impressive and it makes me sound like a cowboy). Ok, so not the most glamorous of ailments, but boy, it hurts. I wake up every morning having to unclick one of my fingers from a weird bent position and throughout the day the pain gets progressively worse.

After months of putting up with it, the pesky finger showed no signs of improvement and, as my hands play up already, I took myself and my finger to my GP after having a chat with the nurse when I was having my monthly Alemtuzumab blood test. Trigger finger plus hands that just won’t do what I tell them to is dire.

My GP was, as ever, fabulous. I explained my frustrations, held out the guilty finger and felt a bit silly. She’s referring me to the trigger finger expert, so fingers crossed (minus the dodgy one) it should be sorted.

As an uncanny aside, I know MS is not contagious (of course), but is it possible for people to experience ‘Sympathy MS’? My long-suffering friend and boss appears to be exhibiting more MS symptoms than me at the moment. He trips over everything, he knocks his coffee over, drops his Jaffa Cakes and generally makes an MS-pest of himself.

Today, he dropped his pasty on the newly-installed radiator in the conversion we’re doing. When I stopped laughing (it took a while), he said, ‘bit strange, but I’ve got this weird pain in my finger, like it gets bent and hurts to unclick it’.

‘Oh, really?’

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MS Is Still Crap

evil laughI’ve spoken with a few people recently who have asked, ‘are you really so chilled about MS now?’

‘What’s happened to all the dark posts you used to write? And if you’re on something, can I have a bit?’

Hmm. Tricky. I sometimes feel that if I let the dark stuff back in, I will never leave the house. In a lot of ways my life is more fulfilling now than before. I’m far stronger (in mind, not body), I’m doing something I love with my Masters course and I am probably a kinder, more tolerant person.

However, there is definitely something in what they say. I admit, I still wake up in the wee small hours, gripped by a terrifying fear of the future. Every time I trip or stumble over my words, I am reminded that my life now will always be defined by these details. Heck, I even have plastic wineglasses.

I’ve had an angsty time at Uni, punctuated with inelegant falls and a very real dread at failing. My brain just doesn’t work the way it used to. Searching for the right word is charming in a French-language film, where the beautiful young woman pauses between cigarette puffs, but utterly soul-destroying when I struggle to find the word ‘paragraph’ at a tutorial at the age of 41 with wrinkles and an undying love of bacon butties.

So, yes, MS is still crap, in all it’s devious glory. It invades every area of my life. Currently, it’s shoving me around. Next week, perhaps the nerve pain will crank up, who knows? This afternoon I was supposed to finish my essay (deadline 5pm Wednesday). Instead, I fell asleep, in the middle of watching a very interesting discussion about which colours to wear this Winter.

My newest medical annoyance is trigger finger. Funnily enough, I noticed it in the wee small hours as I was lying in my bed pretending to be asleep in case the cat bounced on my face, yelling for an early breakfast. I flexed my hands and two fingers stayed the same, crooked and weird. I did the same thing and they stayed the same. Strange, and a little bit worrying.

So of course, I got up and googled MS and trigger finger after feeding the cat. There may be a link between the two. Or there may not be.

MS is crap and it always will be. The only thing that will change is my attitude towards it. And, the upside is, when I woke The Teenager and showed him my dodgy trigger fingers, he was actually rather impressed in a ‘ewwwwww’ kind of way. It doesn’t take much.

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