Category: Epidural Analgesia

Dysphagia.

Dysphagia is the medical term for problems with swallowing food and drink.

Some people find it difficult to swallow certain foods or liquids, while others can’t swallow at all, other side effects include: coughing or choking when eating or drinking. bringing food back up, sometimes through the nose.

I know this may sound horrifying or even disgusting but on and off depending what food I eat and if I have taken small bites will determine if I do not have the feeling I am chocking and that food is stuck and won’t go up or down. This usually occurs if the food is dry and if I have taken large bites. Normally I have to chew my food like a cow chewing grass. Eventually it gets monotinus and I loose the enjoyment of the food I eat. If only there was a pill form where you could choose your meat and veg and have the taste and nutrician plus the feeling you have had a slap up meal all in one.

In fact In 1936 the Jefferson City Post-Tribune ran an article recounting the views of Dr Milton A Bridges of Columbia University. In it, he declared: “Human beings are never going to eat pills for meals” (why not? I would try it for certain) he went on to say “pills can never be made to contain sufficient caloric volume”.

Reading this I would find this would be an idyllic solution to my problem, popping a pill saving time sourcing the produce, cooking and then chewing, not to mention loosing weight in the process with the low calorie count, how wonderful that would be. Imagine your gas or electric energy bill would also drop in the process. But this is not an ideal world and Government and the Economy would be effected hence it is never going to happen, not in my life time anyway. This would also solve world hunger but one would need to have calories as our bodies need on average of 2000 calories per pay so we would have to pop around 400 pills per day just for calories alone. (My theory if that was the case would be to crush them and mix them up as a smoothy formula).

To think how many hours we waste shopping for groceries, packing and unpacking, preparing and cooking and then sitting and eating for me I could be doing something else as time is precious. Imagine how much packaging we could eliminate from our lives whilst saving the planet in the process.

What is the likely cause of the dysphagia?

Certain disorders such as multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy and Parkinson’s disease can cause dysphagia. Neurological damage. Sudden neurological damage, such as from a stroke or brain or spinal cord injury, can affect your ability to swallow.

I wonder if this may be linked to Cerebellar Atrophy & Epidural Analgesia? I am not an expert but it seems a bit of a coincidence that I have the above ailments and find it diffucult to swallow at times.

How to Treat Dysphagia includes:

  1. Exercises your swallowing muscles.
  2. Evaluate your Diet and perhaps change the foods you eat. (Don’t know if there is a recipe for a full english breakfast smoothy).
  3. Dilation.
  4. Endoscopy. ( I had this proceedure done they made me swallow barium and then they stuck a camera down my throat), besides this is for diagnosis purposes and not for ment as a cure.
  5. Surgery. (Not guaranteed to be a successful and you may have to repeated surgeries).
  6. Medicines. ( I have been prescribed Gaviscon Advanced Mint tablets, as I suffer with acid reflux which is also associated Dysphagia.

Further reading can be found here:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/swallowing-problems-dysphagia/

Epidural Analgesia

Epidural analgesia most commonly known as a pain relief for women in birth labour and older adult patients. It’s used to manage postoperative pain, procedural pain, trauma pain, or labour pain. The method is the proceedure of administrating opioids and/or local anesthetics into the epidural space.

.Epiduaral Space.

Epidural Analgesia proceedure is performed by inserting a needle in the epidural space, lower back and injecting analgesics, or by threading a catheter through the needle. A similar proceedure is used for lumbar punctures.

Whilst epidural analgesia is used to elleviate pain during labour, epidural anesthesia on the other hand is used to provide anesthesia during delivery and surgical procedures.

Epidural anesthesia paralyses the bottom half of your body temporarily where you will experience loss of sensation and motor function and involves the administration of local anesthetics and/or opioids into the epidural space at a larger dose than what was administered during labour to achieve epidural analgesia.

I remember having both proceedure and the anaesthetist running an icecube or so he told me down my leg and asked if the feeling was hot or cold and I said it was hot. For all I know he could run a pen down my leg and I would not have known. Come to think of it, this was in theatre so where would he have got an icecube from? lol.

Now 20 years on after the birth of my daughter if I bend at an angle for about two to three minutes I experience excruciating pain and my whole back spasms in which all I can do is sit down in order to stop the pain. I first noticed I had a problem after my daughter was born by c-section and when I came home my upper part of my back cramped whereby I could not move. As the years went on I knew that there was an underlying problem but did not think there was anything anyone could do. Nowadays even washing up or bending to lift grocery shopping can cause my back to spasm.

Fortunately for me I work for myself and do not need to have permission to have time off if I am feeling unwell or procude a sick note and seeing I am working remotely do not have to move from the comfort of my home/office.

Long-term proceedure of epidural analgesia are used to manage persistent (chronic) pain, including cancer-related pain.

Long-term epidural catheters can be surgically implanted and attached to an implanted or external infusion device.

For me even though I do have these spasms there is no way on earth I would I ever have another proceedure done to correct the first one unless it not invasive.

For me I just take Sopodol 30mg/500mg Caplets (codeine phospate) prescribed by my GP for the pain for my knee but also helps with other pain i.e. my back. I immediately have to sit with my back supported with a soft cushion. I also use Deepheat and Deepfreeze and to be honest I prefer the cold sensation to the warm. I also prefer to just spray the area rather than in patch or gel formula.

You can read more on Epidural Analgesia here:

https://journals.lww.com/nursing/Fulltext/2012/08000/Epidural_analgesia__What_nurses_need_to_know.15.aspx#:~:text=Epidural%20analgesia%20is%20the%20administration,(weeks%20to%20months)%20basis.

Side effects Epidural

1). Low blood pressure. It’s normal for your blood pressure to fall a little when you have an epidural.

2). Loss of bladder control

– (This is me, like clockwork running to the bathroom every two hours 24/7).

3). Itchy skin.

4). Feeling sick.

5). Inadequate pain relief.

6). Headache.

7). Slow breathing.

8). Temporary nerve damage.

9). Infection.

10) Permanent Nerve Damage.

11) Fits (convulsions).

12) Severe Breathing Difficulties.

13) Death.

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/epidural/side-effects/

** Please note due to the current panademic regulations do not go to your surgery but speak with your GP over the phone.