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Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton

Whetter

Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
As in appetite whetting.

I've been a taciturn vlogger of late, the consequence, in large part, of having to finish some articles to pay my indentured servant's burdens to the overloads who own me.

One such article is for AARP: The Magazine, a periodical I fear I am way too old to be writing for.

Gerontologists divide the Golden Years into four rough quadrants:

Young Old
Middle Old
Old Old
Walking Dead of Maui Taui

The latter, of course, is more a state of mind than a chronological condition.

Most people don't recognize it, but I can assure you, we who fall into this category recognize each other.

Largely by smell.

But enough shilly shallying. The topic of the article I just finished the first draft of is tendinosis, the affliction that characterizes many of the most common chronic sports injuries, from Swimmer's Shoulder and Tennis Elbow, to Runner's Knee and Achilles Heel.

As a frequent sufferer of SS and TE, I made a trek to see an excellent doctor at UPMC's Rehabilitation Institute, a fellow with his MD in physiatry (or physical medicine) and his Ph.D. in anatomy.

Eventually, when my article appears, I will include a link to it so that those of you who are not yet Young, Middle, or Old Old, or Walking Dead of Maui Taui, can access it without an AARP card.

But for now, and as indicated earlier, as a way of whetting your appetite, let me just publish four ultrasound images of my right elbow, right shoulder (Supraspinatus tendon, i.e., the rotator cuff most likely to wear and tear from swimming), my left shoulder, and finally my twin brother John's notion of what really causes Swimmer's Shoulder.

In an upcoming vlog, I shall wax at length as to why these images are, in fact, so fascinatingly paradoxical.

And on this note, I ask you all to now begin whetting yourselves.

Thank you.



My right elbow, which throbs riotously on my many mis-hit one-handed backhands as well as my second (usually slice) serves. The doctor-anatomist assured me he could see no evidence of structural damage.



My right shoulder. I am right handed, do much more with this arm than the other one, including playing tennis and--in the old days--breaking my falls when, as a frequent inebriate, I followed the drunkard's path.

This shoulder does show signs of a small, partial tear in the supraspinitus, though the good doctor was quick to add that such a condition is more rule than exception in active fellows my age (59 as on Sept. 24; FINA 60 on Jan. 1).



My left shoulder, with RC so perfectly in tact the doctor described it as "pristine"--the kind of supraspinitus tendon most commonly seen in Tarzan-like specimens in their teenage years.



Finally, my twin brother John's concept of what kind of abuse would have to happen to my left shoulder to convert it into the sad shape of my right one. John is not a doctor. I'm not one either, not exactly. But I have seen plenty of oddities in my decades of fake clinical practice and know-it-all blowhardery based on five minutes of Googling Medline.

I have never seen a tiny digging fat man shoveling away at a pristine supraspinitus.

But I cannot rule out the possibility.

*
Oh, I almost forgot.

Here's the paradox I invite you all to ponder.

It's my left shoulder that hurts when I swim.

The right one feels fine.

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Updated October 4th, 2011 at 09:31 PM by jim thornton

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  1. Kurt Dickson's Avatar
    I am whet already...what side do you breath to? You can have normal ligaments, but if you breath to right, you probably still have some impingement (bursitis or narrow AC joint, etc).
  2. Speedo's Avatar
    Clearly you need the fat man. Is that Rush Limbaugh or John Candy?
  3. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt Dickson
    I am whet already...what side do you breath to? You can have normal ligaments, but if you breath to right, you probably still have some impingement (bursitis or narrow AC joint, etc).
    It hurts in my left shoulder, and I breathe on the left side.

    The doctor thinks the two are related--not enough rotation on that side, forcing me to crane my neck a bit to breathe.

    Also, I spend much of the day slumped over the computer, looking at scans of my deteriorating body. This along with general weakness may have contributed with a touch of "sick scapula syndrome" that can be remedied with PT when I get a chance to make an appointment.

    How are you doing, Dr. Dixon? Did the litigation nastiness ever resolve itself?

    Personally, I don't know why ER docs can't earn a little extra cash selling expired pain killers. To me, that's just good business sense!
  4. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Speedo
    Clearly you need the fat man. Is that Rush Limbaugh or John Candy?
    Actually, that's my inner fat man, struggling to get out of this lithe, svelte, teenage Tarzan-like body that, admittedly, smells on humid days like warmed over death.

    How be ye, Mr. Speedo, protector of our increasingly estrogenic watersheds?
  5. rodent's Avatar
    If you swim with a snorkle you can try to balance your body roll and stroke. You won't have to worry about side breathing. That may help you somewhat. I think you want to keep training. You can rest in your Old/Old stage.
  6. jim thornton's Avatar
    Jack, the shoulder doesn't hurt too much, and it's not interfering with training. I am hoping we can set some tt meets relays for 1776. We might have done a record w Paul trevisan's participation.
  7. rodent's Avatar
    We all moved up to 60-64. We have at least 6 fast guys who are usually in good shape and usually go to Zones. I think Paul will be there to since he just turned 60.
  8. jim thornton's Avatar
    Any scm meets after Jan. 1? Love to do the 200 free relay along w the 400 and 800,.and of these exist, the 1600 and 3200.
  9. Kurt Dickson's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton

    How are you doing, Dr. Dixon? Did the litigation nastiness ever resolve itself?

    Personally, I don't know why ER docs can't earn a little extra cash selling expired pain killers. To me, that's just good business sense!
    Litgation still continues...gratefully plaintiff is down to 14 million...still a lot of expired vicodin I need to sell to cover that...

    maybe you should try this-- don't brush your teeth for months on end, spend 500-1000 dollars per week at the track instead of going to a dentist, go to your local ER with a tooth abscess, get real sick and sue....this country is awesome!

    hope your shoulder gets better.
  10. kuztoo's Avatar
    I'm sure this article will make most women" whet"
  11. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt Dickson
    Litgation still continues...gratefully plaintiff is down to 14 million...still a lot of expired vicodin I need to sell to cover that...

    maybe you should try this-- don't brush your teeth for months on end, spend 500-1000 dollars per week at the track instead of going to a dentist, go to your local ER with a tooth abscess, get real sick and sue....this country is awesome!

    hope your shoulder gets better.
    Actually, I don't brush my teeth. I am afraid of tampering with the delicate ecology of my mouth. So far, so good. Only one cavity my whole life, though I lost all four molars--not to decay, but they cracked when I ate hard pretzels and Italian bread and gravel.

    Now I have titanium implants, and those babies will be around when the **** roaches are climbing around on all the irradiated corpses of litigants and blameless alike.

    Sorry about your travails. I think the little digging man finds his way into us all.
  12. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by kuztoo
    I'm sure this article will make most women" whet"
    I whet them; you finish em off with roofing nails.
  13. chowmi's Avatar
    I always thought the threshold into olddome was the act of Walking Up to Someone You Don't Know and Proceeding to Discuss Your Aches and Ills.
  14. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by rodent
    If you swim with a snorkle you can try to balance your body roll and stroke. You won't have to worry about side breathing. That may help you somewhat.
    Jack is right. This would help. Since you're pretty much just doing freestyle these days, you should take the time to to learn it!

    Any real meet on the horizon or just mudhole meets?

    Did you get the opportunity to experiment on yourself with any of the new tendonosis treatments you're writing about?
  15. RustyScupperton's Avatar
    Excuse me chowmi, I don't know you but I have been on antibiotics for a while and it has resulted in a pesky anal itch. Plus I may have a slight tear in my left gastrocnemius muscle. Slept OK but not great last night. Just thought you'd be interested in how I am feeling!
  16. Bobinator's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    Actually, I don't brush my teeth. I am afraid of tampering with the delicate ecology of my mouth. So far, so good. Only one cavity my whole life, though I lost all four molars--not to decay, but they cracked when I ate hard pretzels and Italian bread and gravel.

    Now I have titanium implants, and those babies will be around when the **** roaches are climbing around on all the irradiated corpses of litigants and blameless alike.

    Sorry about your travails. I think the little digging man finds his way into us all.
    Is there some new research out there proclaiming I should not brush my teeth? I have always been a religious 2X per day "tooth brusher" and I still have cavities. Perhaps I shouldn't be brushing. Could you shed some light on this subject for me.
    Oh, I know the fat, digging man. I call him Long Qy. He lives in my heart and causes funky rhythms. He is also making me insane. I hate that guy!
  17. Celestial's Avatar
    Jim - you know I developed a similar problem - golfers elbow in my left elbow - I neither golf, nor am left handed. I do play tennis - but have a one-handed backhand. I also have a micro-tear in my right rotator cuff. Doesn't hurt at all. Go figure.
  18. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by chowmi
    I always thought the threshold into olddome was the act of Walking Up to Someone You Don't Know and Proceeding to Discuss Your Aches and Ills.
    My brother beat me to it. I am sure you have had your earful of his ani pruritis by now, but when you hunger for more, I'd love to tell you about the trouble my gut bacteria colonies are having making the population adjustment necessary to accommodate my new daily fiber intake.

    I am going to be attempting for two weeks straight to consume the amount recommended by the nutritional community, that is to say, somewhere between 30 to 38 g a day for a man.

    Since in my normal life, a heavy day of roughage typically consisted of < 3 g, I am one magnificently bloated old windbag, if I do say so myself, little missy!

    Let me know when you want to pull up a chair and hear all about it!
  19. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    Jack is right. This would help. Since you're pretty much just doing freestyle these days, you should take the time to to learn it!

    Any real meet on the horizon or just mudhole meets?

    Did you get the opportunity to experiment on yourself with any of the new tendonosis treatments you're writing about?
    You may not have read Whetter closely enough.

    Do people generally realize that the shoulder that actually hurts a little when I swim is the same one that looks pristine in the ultrasound scan? That the somewhat shredded one, on the other hand, feels fine?

    I am pretty sure Celestial understands this.

    I am probably going to avail myself of PT since I've already met the deductible, and like any good American who has the opportunity to screw his insurance company by buying questionable interventions and sticking them with the bill, I say, what the hey!

    If I hit a plateau, I can go back for a nitroglycerine patch or possibly a shockwave therapy session or hyalauronic acid injection or something else similarly exotic. But I am pretty confident that eccentric muscle loading and scapular stabilizing exercises will do the trick!
  20. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by RustyScupperton
    Excuse me chowmi, I don't know you but I have been on antibiotics for a while and it has resulted in a pesky anal itch. Plus I may have a slight tear in my left gastrocnemius muscle. Slept OK but not great last night. Just thought you'd be interested in how I am feeling!
    Brud, did you know that Chowmi, whom neither of us has ever met in person, is a protege of Al Rose and former Pittsburgher who, rumor has it, either made the Olympics or went to Olympic trials?

    I think we need to do another Thornton Twins podcast about our various health problems and concerns and the like, with special attention to those systems of the body that erupt, excrete, ooze, leak, and/or otherwise produce biles and vapours.

    This is exactly the kind of thing that young girls living in the Dallas area cannot find on their local radio stations.

    We could meet a tremendous need, brud 'o mine!
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