Medical Note:
Follow-Up Visit
15 May 2019

¶ I went out into the awful weather today to pay a visit to the podiatrist, whom I haven’t seen in two months and won’t see again for three. I’m always afraid that he’ll find something wrong — a neurotic anxiety in most cases but quite reasonable here, and the reason why I always show up, even in the pouring rain. I feel fine, but that doesn’t mean much, given the peripheral neuropathy that, by blocking the pain, let my foot infection get so wildly out of hand last winter. I don’t actually feel anything, ever. Not pain, anyway — I can balance, walk, and so on. 

Fun fact: “I estimate,” said the podiatrist, “that eighty percent of the amputations that I do involve neuropathy.”

Ouch, that word! I haven’t forgotten how touch-and-go it was when they took me in at New York Hospital, and I was treated by two distinct teams, Infectious Diseases and Vascular Surgery. For the latter, read “amputation.” It was actually the podiatrist, a member of the vascular team, who declared for the other side, when he called for a PICC line and lots of antiobiotics, which in the event did the trick. He was also the doctor who, for the second time, punctured the unanaesthetized swelling with something like a larding needle, causing sheets of blood to pour out of my foot, only to say, “This is good.” Id est: no pus.

I felt nothing, not even wet. And this time, Kathleen wasn’t looking. 

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