Something Rash

Thursday morning, as I was getting out of the shower, I noticed a small but angry red rash on my calf. My wife, Muri, was sitting at her vanity and said, What is that on your leg, in a tone entirely too alarmed to be seeing what I was.  The other side of my calf had a 4 by 6 inch area that was red and swollen.   I’d never seen anything like it.  Now if I was twenty or thirty, I’d probably have put some Calamine Lotion on it and went on with my day.  And in my forties or fifties, I’d probably decided to wait a few days to see if it went away.  But at 75, every time I have a health issue there’s this Little Voice in my head that says, This is it. You have a Flesh Eating Infection. Or Deep Vein Thrombosis,   So, I called my doctor … and given this crazy pandemic, he scheduled a telexam on Facetime.   Since I’m not into sexting, there is something unnerving about showing someone body parts on the phone, even if it’s only my leg,  When the good Dr. Wilson saw it he said, Wow, I’ve never seen one like that.   Cancer, my Little Voice muttered. I mentally suggested suggested he shut the hell up and asked the doctor, What do you think it could be?   It’s probably some sort of dermatitis, he said, trying to calm me down,  I’m going to prescribe a steroid ointment.  But if it is worse tomorrow, I expect you to call me right away.

So I picked up the prescription and applied it as directed, then went on with my day.  Keeping busy kept my mind from diving down there where my Little Voice lives.   I imagined it looked better before bed in the interest of getting some sleep and I slept well, aided by a couple of Benedryl.  In the morning, at first glance, it seemed a little better.  At second glance it looked worse, redder with all the spaces in between the little bumps filled in red.  I asked my wife, Muri, if she thought it looked worse.  I can’t really say, Bud, she replied. That’s a good wife of fifty years knowing when to give her opinion and when to withhold it.  So I called Dr. Wilson and got a real, in person appointment.  He thought it looked better but his face still showed concern.  We better do some tests just to be sure.  He took a biopsy and ordered some bloodwork.  Told you, said my Little Voice.

Saturday morning, my blood work results began coming in on the MyChart app that my medical group uses.  Quantitative D-Dimer, normal range – rules out Deep Vein Thrombosis.  Complete Blood Count all normal. always reassuring (except to my Little Voice).  Hemoglobin A1c good, at least for a perpetual prediabetic,  Comprehensive Metabolic Panel, all good.  And a note from Dr. Wilson: Please let patient know that his labs look great.  No concerns. We’re waiting on the biopsy and will call him with results.  And now it’s Monday and the rash has almost completely faded.  What a relief, in spite of my Little Voice sitting in the basement of my brain, mumbling about the biopsy.   And I’m wondering … Did I over react, especially in the midst of this pandemic?  What do you think?

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2 Comments on “Something Rash”

  1. Margy Says:

    We live in a time of fear. We get a daily dose of things we should be fearful of. We hear too much while truly knowing so little. It is really a challenge to not be fearful when we are being told, daily, that we (the older ones) are at such a high risk for everything, including a new virus!
    Personally, I’m not particularly fearful of getting the virus. I will either be fine, or I’ll be sick for a while, or I will die. If I die, it will happen a lot faster than some of the diseases my friends suffered from for so long and then died…

  2. Life is pretty tricky right now. Sometimes if you can do it safely, (and this whole video thing is so close to the old joke we used to say when we called vet sister-in-law about the cat. “Hold him up to the phone she’d say” Who knew it might work? HAHA) better safe than sorry….or worry yourself to worse.
    Take care.

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