The pain-free days did not last long. The tooth pain came roaring back, and the endodontist said finally that there must be a crack in the tooth allowing bacteria to get in. I am going to get it pulled on Monday.
When I sent out a text to some people telling them of the upcoming extraction, I concluded: "Send baby food."
I really wanted to save that tooth because I am losing so many around it, but I couldn't go on like that. I don't think my Dana-Farber doctors will want me to get implants, so I'll have to talk to someone about dentures down the road.
I had asked Melissa if I could take Advil because it seems to help with dental pain. She said OK, but not too much and not for too long. I knew that the reason I can't take Tylenol is because it is bad for my liver, but I was unsure about ibuprofen. Melissa said it is bad for my kidneys, which already took a wallop when I went into kidney failure after my last transplant. I took Advil three times in the past few days, but it didn't help anyway.
So it is oxycodone or pain, every four hours. I will be glad to get rid of that.
The MRI on Friday almost made me forget the tooth pain. Nothing like the feeling of having your head drilled into to make you forget about your other problems. It was hard to make it through the hour-long procedure. Claustrophobia wasn't the worst part of it. I kept feeling like I needed to cough due to post-nasal drip from lying on my back so long. At one point I did cough, earning me the opportunity to have one whole sequence repeated. I had to ask them to slide me out of the tube for a sip of water, not an easy thing to do when you are lying on your back and cannot move.
Also just so I wouldn't have a dull moment, there are some painful little blisters on my lip right where the squamous cell cancer was recently removed. I will have to call my dermatologist about this on Monday.
On a positive note, the piece I wrote for Yankee Magazine on the Crazy Orchid Lady of Shelburne Falls, Mass., was accepted, and a check is in the works. The magazine has crazy lead times and so the article will not be in for a while.
I finally got to tennis on Thursday. My legs didn't bother me until the end, and it was great to hit the ball. George said that the three other players in the clinic have improved greatly since the fall and that I was doing a good job keeping up with them. I said it must have been all that lying on the couch, visions of tennis balls dancing in my head.