Saturday, May 10, 2008

Home Improvements (part 2)

brooke and i worked in the yard some today. we cleaned out the old flower beds and put some blue/purple perinnials down. hope they'll bloom soon. we bought some mulch to help make everything "pop"! i also cut down 2 dead azalea bushes in our back yard. and, we hung some geraniums up on the front porch.

we hope to paint the master bathroom this weekend. be looking for pics...

Planting the flowers - see how bland it looked!

Friday, May 09, 2008

Freaky Eye Friday

DISCLAIMER: picture of an eye below....this one's not bad, though.

i saw a patient today who came in as an emergency.  he noticed at 6:00 am this morning that he couldn't see the top part of his vision in his left eye.  it happened very suddenly and hasn't gotten better.

we dilated his pupils and looked inside.  i saw something that looks kinda like this picture:

this is an example of a Branch Retinal Artery Occlusion (BRAO).  let me help you get oriented to the anatomy of the internal eye.

the big yellow circle is the part of the optic nerve that i can see in your eyes.  it takes all the information from the eye to the brain.  the red crooked lines are blood vessels that take blood to and from the retina (the orange didn't know the inside of your eye was orange, did you?).  

in the picture, the 2 arrows that point to the shiny particle in the blood vessel are showing a "plaque" that is blocking the blood from flowing to the retina.  since the blood can't reach the retina, it looks pale in that area.  the other 2 arrows help you to see how far that reaches.

when i see this condition in practice, it is a wake-up call for the patient.  anyone who has a BRAO is at serious risk for having a heart attack or stroke.  those are essentially the same things as a BRAO, but they happen in the heart or the brain instead of the eye.  my patient today had already undergone a 6-bypass surgery less than one year ago.  most likely, this "plaque" came from some blockage that used to be blocking his heart arteries.  he's going to be seeing his heart doctor soon to make sure he's not at an immediate risk for another heart attack or a stroke.

the prognosis or outlook for this condition is usually not great.  it depends on how long the area is without blood.  we weren't able to help it move downstream any today in the office.  we recommended increasing his aspirin dosage to help thin the blood and hopefully help this plaque to dislodge.

it's humbling to think that we may have had a role in saving this guy's life because of checking his eyes....

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Many apologies....

i understand that many people were grossed out/shocked to see the picture from last friday's post.  so i'll do my best to warn you in the future that an eyeball picture is on the way.

tonight, i'm getting to watch my nephew Cade pitch in his baseball game.  i'm here to tell you:  this dude is gonna be a great athlete soon.  he's already almost able to beat me at "around the world".  here's a picture of him at the Valentine's Banquet this year.  Brooke was teaching him to be "gangsta".  

Monday, May 05, 2008

Weekend wrapup

our weekend was pretty busy. brooke had to work Saturday and Sunday, so she's worn out from that. Saturday night, we had a dinner party with brooke's coworkers...kind of a going away party for 2 graduating pharmacists, Ben and Amy Boyd. we had a good time there.

sunday, i got to preach that morning and that night. i was really only planning on preaching once, though. our regular preacher (Mel Futrell) was out of town on a gospel meeting, so i was ready to preach that morning at our congregation. well, that morning while we were getting ready, i got a call from the preacher at Montevallo, and he needed me to preach that night. so, i preached the same sermon that morning and that night, just two different audiences.

i got to play golf today. it was only the 2nd time i've gone since it got warm again. i was quickly reminded at how bad i am at golf, and the frustrations drug on for 18 painful holes. i think that was enough to keep me off the course for some time. :)

brooke has a few more weeks of school before she'll be off for the summer! keep her in your prayers!