Monday, June 30, 2008

Detached Retina (Part III)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008
So today I had my second vitrectomy. Even though I had already been through the surgery and knew what to expect I was still extremely nervous and anxious. The thought of having my eye cut again terrified me. My surgery was scheduled for 10:00 and we arrived at Albuquerque Ambulatory Eye Surgery Center about 15 minutes early. After getting all the paperwork out of the way it was just a matter of waiting. I was nervous so I decided to just sit and stare at the floor and take deep breaths. I wanted to be relaxed when they called for me. Eventually the nurse came for me and took me to the prep area. She did all the things she did last time – blood pressure, temperatue, EKG, started an IV and then put drops in my eyes. The wait for the actual surgery was longer this time. I was in the prep area for a good hour before they took me to the surgery area. One thing that helped me today was that it was the exact same staff as the first surgery. There was a lot of comfort in the familiarity of faces. The staff had done such a great job the first time that this made me feel a whole lot better. They got me prepped by covering my right eye with a protective patch to make sure that they operated on the left eye and the anesthesiologist started to put me under. I don’t remember much about the surgery although I was aware of something going on. I do remember the doctor talking about silicone oil at one point but wasn’t sure what it was all about. Today’s surgery was done by Dr. Wyant. Click on the photo below to what he did.

Silicone oil
Although the majority of uncomplicated retinal detachments can be corrected with standard surgical methods, a small percentage of patients develop severe retinal scarring which does not respond to ordinary treatment. Some of these patients can be helped by the use of silicone oil to fill the vitreous cavity of the eye. Silicone oil is a clear inert liquid which may help hold the retina in place after it has been surgically repaired. Although in some cases silicone is left inside the eye for many years, most surgeons prefer to remove the silicone oil approximately four to six months after surgery, unless the threat of retinal re-detachment is great. Removal can usually be accomplished as an outpatient procedure. Silicone oil removal may help avoid potential complications of silicone oil, which include corneal clouding and glaucomaI also remember the doctor asking if I was okay and he stated that he was done and would come talk to me in the recovery room. Once in the recovery room the nurse checked all my vitals, sat me up into a chair and gave me some water. This time around I didn’t feel as out of it, the pain wasn’t as bad and I wasn’t nauseated. The nurse then went and got Thomas and we waited a few minutes for the doctor. He explained that he used the oil instead of the gas bubble thinking that it would be better this time around. He also told me that the oil would have to be removed later on. My discharge orders were pretty much the same as last time with a couple of minor changes. We didn’t have to stop at La Bajada since I didn’t have the gas bubble and I didn’t have to worry about car travel above 7500 feet. Here were the orders I was given:
1. Walk carefully, depth perception will be affected.
2. Resume usual diet and meds.
3. Percocet for pain as needed.
4. Face down position.
5. No vigorous or jarring activities.
6. Do not remove eye patch until next doctor appointment.
7. Do not get operated eye wet.
8. May do light reading and a little TV watching.
9. Follow up doctor appointment Wednesday, June 18, 2008.
10. Diamox for eye pressure once per day.
Again, the professionalism of the staff at AAESC was incredible. I felt so comfortable that I was being taken care of true professionals and it made the ordeal more tolerable.

Since I had all the equipment I needed for the face down position I was ready to do what the doctor told me. When we got home I went straight to bed. I felt so tired. I rested for a couple of hours and when I woke up Thomas made me some dinner. Later my eye really started hurting so I took some Percocet and went back to bed. I was anxious for my appointment the next day. I really was hoping for better news following this second surgery.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008
My appointment was at Eye Associates in Santa Fe at 8:00 with Dr. Mark Chiu. I wasn’t feeling very good this morning. I was tired and my eye had a lot of pain (6 out of 10). Dr. Chiu examined my eye and I was so relieved to hear that the retina was flat and completely attached.. He also noted my eye pressure at 28. I was so happy at this point. Now I could follow the doctors orders with some optimism for the overall outcome. The doctor gave me some more meds and more instructions to follow and I was to return on Friday, June 27 for a follow up. Here were my instructions ;

I was to continue my face down position as much as I could tolerate. Take my Percocet as needed. And put eye drops in my left eye three times a day (Atropine, Zymar) and I had to put Pred Forte in my eye every hour for inflammation. I also had to put Istalol drops one time a day and take my Diamox one time per day for my eye pressure. I was also to wear an eye shield at night to protect my eye.

This time when I returned home I felt so much better. And I vowed to be a model patient and stay in the face down position as much as possible – I didn’t want bad news when I returned on June 27. My eye was still hurting so I took some Percocet and went to bed. When I woke up the pain was much better but still there (3 out of 10). I could tolerate it so I didn’t take any more medicine. All in all I was in better spirits and seem to be able to tolerate all the restrictions a little better,

Thursday, June 19, 2008 to Sunday, June 22, 2008
I am lumping days together now since the days seem to be about the same. They are pretty boring – almost all I can do is watch TV. The doctor did allow me more time reading and working on the computer. I did still have pain but it gradually got better and by Sunday it was gone except for just some general discomfort. I have been using this time to journal all of this and I have had plenty of time to think about all sorts of things. I won’t tell you about all I have been thinking about because I think you may all get the feeling that I may be losing my mind.

Monday, June 23, 2008 to Thursday, June 26, 2008
So, by far, this week has been my best. First, I didn’t have to have any more surgeries. And second, because some friends came to visit. This really helped to lift my spirits and deter some of the boredom. On Monday, Diane stopped by with iced coffees and we just sat and chatted. For those who know us, we have been known to have days slip away from us while we drank coffee and talked. It was nice to have some distraction from the face down position and the TV. Then on Tuesday, Diane and Peggy came by for a visit and brought lunch with them. Lunch was from my favorite sandwich shop – Mucho’s – I had a New Mexico BLT – my favorite sandwich. I really enjoyed the visit and was glad they took the time to visit me. And finally on Thursday, Diane and Chris came for another afternoon visit. It was relaxing and a welcomed relief from me being alone during the day and just thinking about my eye. Diane worried that the visits were making me tired – she was right – but that was okay. I have all day to sleep and rest so I didn’t mind being tired from the visits. All I can say is I am thankful for good friends. It has also been nice to get phone calls from family and friends that don’t live nearby. I enjoy the phone conversations because they also help break up the monotony.

This week has also been better with pain – it has subsided and all I have now is occasional discomfort. The one big issue I have is with light. One of the drops I use is to dilate my eye. So my left eye is constantly dilated and the light really bothers it – some days are worse than others. I do use an eye patch or sunglasses to help but there are days when it doesn’t matter. The other problem I am having is my sleep. I sleep at odd hours. Sometimes I can sleep through the night but more than not I end up getting up because it is hard for me to sleep on my stomach. So I end up taking naps whenever the mood hits me. All in all I am feeling better. I do have worries and I am looking forward to my doctor visit tomorrow and hoping for good news.

Friday, June 27, 2008
ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC NEWS! My retina is still attached and looking good. The doctor seemed very happy and I was estatic. Everything is looking up. The doctor lifted the face down position. So now I can sit and sleep in whatever position is comfortable for me. I still have to take it easy. I am still limited in my activities and can do nothing strenuous. I think I can live with this if it means that my retina stays attached. There are other issues that will need to be dealt with but all that is on the back burner until the doctors are totally satisfied that the retina has healed into position. So I will just do what I need to do and think positive thoughts.
* Since there is really not much going on now I will just post updates as things change. So if I don’t post you can assume all is well.
Detached Retina (Update #1)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Detached Retina (Part II)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008
I was up early today (actually I really didn’t sleep much last night) and I was really worried about the surgery. Every time I thought about them operating on my eye I just got more freaked out. Once I finished my bath and was dressed I sat down and tried to relax. I wasn’t able to eat anything – 1. because I was too nervous and 2. because I was told not to eat anything after midnight. Finally at about 7:45 Thomas and I headed for Albuquerque. I had to report to the Albuquerque Ambulatory Eye Surgery Center by 9:00. We arrived a little early and I got all the paperwork filled out. From then on it was just a matter of waiting. Thomas called his cousin Ruth and she and her husband, Chris were going to come and keep him company. Eventually, a nurse came to get me. I was taken to the preparation area for all the necessities before surgery. First stop was the bathroom. They wanted to make sure my bladder was empty so I was comfortable during surgery. I was put on a stretcher and made very comfortable. I would be on this stretcher all the way to the recovery room. The nurse asked lots of questions including what eye they were operating on. She put a dot on my forehead above my left eye and put a patch over my right eye so they couldn’t get to it. She checked my date of birth and a few other minor things. She took my temperature and blood pressure, ran an EKG, started an IV and put 12 drops into my left eye (4 drops each of three different medicines). After all that it was a matter of waiting again. After what seemed like an eternity I was moved to the holding area. Here the nurses again asked questions and checked things – all to make sure they were operating on the correct eye. The anesthesiologist showed up and explained all that would happen. He made sure to let me know that I would be aware of what was going on although I wouldn’t feel anything. At this point I was thinking – please, please, please just knock me out – I didn’t want to be aware of anything. He talked to me about mundane things like what I did for a living and how long I had been doing it. I realized at some point that whatever he was giving me was working – I seemed to be mostly out of it and I wasn’t totally understanding everything he was saying. Around this time I assume they started the surgery. I really don’t remember much but I was aware that things were happening in the area of my left eye. I do remember the doctor talking about laser and gas bubbles but that is about it. Today’s surgery was done by Dr. Reidy. Here is what he did . . .
Vitrectomy is an increasingly used treatment for retinal detachment in countries with modern healthcare systems. It involves the removal of the vitreous gel and is usually combined with filling the eye with a gas bubble (SF6 or C3F8 gas). Advantages of this operation is that there is no myopic shift after the operation. A disadvantage is that a vitrectomy always leads to more rapid progression of a cataract in the operated eye. In many places vitrectomy is the most commonly performed operation for the treatment of retinal detachment.

Scleral Buckle
Scleral buckle surgery is an established treatment in which the eye surgeon sews one or more silicone bands (bands, tyres) to the outside of the eyeball. The bands push the wall of the eye inward against the retinal hole, closing the hole and allowing the retina to re-attach. The bands do not usually have to be removed.

Once the doctor was finished he asked me if I was okay. Through the haze I told him I felt okay – just a little woozy. Shortly after that I was wheeled into the recovery room. The nurse checked my vital signs, asked me a few questions and finally sat me up into a chair. I drank a little water – my mouth was really dry. I was also having some pain but not enough to take any meds. My eye was completely bandaged and I was still a little out of it. The nurse removed my IV and then Thomas and I waited for the doctor to come talk to us about discharge orders. We only had to wait 5 minutes for the doctor. Here were the orders I was given:
1. Walk carefully, depth perception will be affected.
2. Resume usual diet and meds.
3. Percocet for pain as needed.
4. Face down position.
5. No car travel above 7500 feet – due to gas bubble.
6. Stop at La Bajada Hill for 10 minutes for pressure adjustment with gas bubble.
7. No vigorous or jarring activities.
8. Do not remove eye patch until next doctor appointment.
9. Do not get operated eye wet.
10. May do light reading and a little TV watching.
11. Follow up doctor appointment Wednesday, June 11, 2008.
12. Diamox for eye pressure once per day
I have to say that the professionalism of the staff at AAESC was incredible. Everyone was so nice, attentive, knowledgeable and caring. I haven’t seen that in a long time. The entire staff made me feel comfortable that I was in good hands.

Once we got home all I wanted to do was sleep. But remember I had to do it face down. So I got a couple of towels and arranged them so I could lay face down – it wasn’t very comfortable and I didn’t get to sleep. While I was trying to rest Thomas went and filled my prescriptions. He also made a phone call to get some equipment. There is a place in Albuquerque that rents chairs and tables that help to position you correctly so that you can maximize the benefits of recovery. Albuquerque Support Systems rents this equipment for one to two weeks. So we made plans for them to deliver what I needed the next day. Until then we were able to get a massage table that I could lay on. Thomas’ cousins, Ruth & Chris brought the massage table to us. That evening and night I only slept about one hour. Lying face down and being on my stomach was so uncomfortable – my back ached and my face hurt. Also my eye was killing me – I had about 6 out of 10 pain and on top of that I felt like something was poking me in the eye and it was burning. I was also having a little nausea. Thomas called the emergency number – the person that answered assured us that all of my complaints were completely normal and not to worry. She told me to take the Percocet and then talk to the doctor in the morning. So I made the best of it – I tried staying face down as much as possible but I had to get up a couple of times and walk around. Three Percocet and one hour of sleep later it was time to go to the doctor for my follow up appointment.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008
My appointment was at Eye Associates in Santa Fe at 8:20 with Dr. Mark Chiu. I wasn’t feeling all that good. I was tired, my eye had a lot of pain (4 out of 10) and I was still nauseated. Dr. Chiu examined my eye and the first thing he said was that there was still fluid behind the retina in the lower part of my eye. He also noted my eye pressure at 31. Upon hearing that there was still fluid behind the retina I felt this overwhelming disappointment come over me. I had just gone through this major surgery (which for me was very traumatic) and it didn’t seem to have worked. The doctor told me to relax and he gave me some meds and more instructions to follow and I was to return on Friday, June 13 for a follow up. Here were my instructions ;

I was to continue my face down position as much as I could tolerate. Take my Percocet as needed. And put eye drops in my left eye three times a day (Atropine, Pred Forte, Zymar). I also had to put Istalol drops one time a day and take my Diamox one time per day for my eye pressure. I was also to wear an eye shield at night to protect my eye.

So I returned home disappointed but resolved to follow the instructions to the best of my ability. Amanda from Albuquerque Support Systems delivered all the equipment I needed to maintain the face down position. I received a Seated Support with pads, a Bed Support with pads and two reverse view mirrors. I was happy to receive this equipment because it made the face down position a little more tolerable. So once all the equipment was positioned and Amanda left I put myself in the Seated Support. It was pretty comfortable and with the reverse view mirror I was able to watch TV and that helped to pass the time. Unfortunately the Bed Support was not as comfortable. I found myself in the same predicament as the night before – uncomfortable and unable to sleep. Again I only got about an hour of sleep. My back was really bothering me – I realized that I very seldom sleep on my stomach. I continued with all my meds including the Percocet for pain – both for my eye and my back.

Thursday, June 12, 2008
Today was extremely boring!!!!! I maintained my face down position as much as possible alternating between the massage table, the seated support and the bed support. My eye continued to bother me (3 out of 10 pain) and I continued with my all my meds. The nausea had subsided quite a bit but my appetite was not very good - I ate very little today. I also got very little sleep. I was anxious for my appointment in the morning to see if there had been any changes.

Friday, June 13, 2008
I arrived for my appointment at 8:30 at Eye Associates. I was seeing Dr. Reidy today. He did the usual examination and informed me that there was still fluid behind the retina. He said he thought that by today all the fluid would be gone. He also told me that sometimes more than one surgery has to be done and he felt this might be the case for me. He wanted me to continue with all the instructions and to come in again Monday, June 16 for another check up. My eye was feeling better, the pain had subsided but apparently it wasn’t healing. I was so disappointed and decided to really follow all the instructions until Monday and hope for the best. I really wasn’t looking forward to another surgery.

Saturday, June 14, 2008
Another boring day! Just hanging around – going from my seated support to the bed support to the massage table. Having trouble getting comfortable. Although I didn’t have any eye pain today I was still uncomfortable. And since I am not able to do anything all I did was worry about having to have another surgery.

Sunday, June 15, 2008
Today was pretty much the same as yesterday. I feel pretty good, just uncomfortable being in the face down position. And again all I did was worry about the possibility of surgery.

Monday, June 16, 2008
Today my follow up appointment was with Dr. Wyant at 8:00. I can tell you I wasn’t very optimistic. All signs pointed to another surgery. And since I had been thinking about it all weekend I was concerned that another surgery wouldn’t help. I felt like I had followed all instructions to the best of my ability. If the first surgery hadn’t fixed the problem and if following all the instructions hadn’t helped what would the purpose be of putting me through another stressful and traumatic surgery. I didn’t feel that I could do any more than I had already done. So after the doctor completed his exam he confirmed my fears. Another surgery would be necessary. He tried to explain that it was nothing I had or hadn’t done – it was just the nature of the injury. I have to say that at this point I was really freaking out. I really didn’t feel like I could endure another surgery and another two weeks of all those limitations for nothing. I kept telling the doctor that I just couldn’t do it. He spent over 30 minutes with me explaining that this is the way things go sometimes. He noted that I was too young and healthy to just blow off my eye. He had every confidence that the eye would be fine. It was just that sometimes patients needed more than one surgery. He asked if Thomas was around and he wanted the two of us to talk about it. So Thomas came into the office and the doctor left us alone to talk. There really wasn’t much of a discussion – Thomas felt that we needed to just do it if the doctor thought it was necessary. So with a very heavy heart and much fear and concern I agreed to the second surgery. It was scheduled for 10:00 the next morning with Dr. Wyant at the AAESC. My concerns and stress level have skyrocketed and I have trouble relaxing the rest of the day. I decided to ease up on the face down position since I had to have the surgery again and that helped me to get a little sleep tonight.
* I will continue with Part III beginning with the second surgery. It may take me a week or two to get it posted.
Detached Retina (Part III)

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Detached Retina (Part I)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Today I noticed something a little weird about my eyesight. Not sure what it is – I was busy doing household chores and for the most part I wasn’t aware of my eye problem. But there is definitely something going on.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Today was spent doing things around the house. Cleaning, laundry, paying bills, etc., etc., etc. Again, I noticed something going on with my eyes. It wasn’t really obvious but nevertheless there is something going on. Tomorrow will reveal the problem.

Thursday, June 5, 2008
Today I had to work. While at work I noticed when I was filling out my forms I was having trouble getting my pen in the correct blank. As I thought about it I realized that my depth perception was off – that was the “something” that had been bothering me. It wasn’t just with filling out forms, it was with everything, even on the stairs. I began to worry and decided that the next day I would try to see my eye doctor. After work I went to meet friends for coffee and a little visit. I enjoyed myself and didn’t worry too much about my eyes. Once I was in the car and driving home I became painfully aware that this problem was pretty bad. I was having difficulty judging distances and even having problems when looking to the left. I came to a stop sign and stopped. I put the car in park. I covered my left eye with my hand – no problem I could see just fine out of my right eye. So I covered my right eye with my hand – BIG problem. I only had vision in the upper outside corner of my left eye. Boy, did I freak! I put the car in drive and headed home. All kinds of things went through my mind and as I thought about it I started feeling jittery. Once I arrived home I talked to Thomas about what was going on and I decided to check my blood pressure. On top of not having sight in my left eye my blood pressure was pretty high. Thomas decided we needed to get to Urgent Care and find out what was going on. The people at Urgent Care were really nice and helpful. Even though they were concerned about my blood pressure, they were more concerned about my eye. The doctor was almost 100% positive I had a detached retina. He explained what that meant and told me he wanted to call a specialist. I was really freaking out now. The wait for the specialist to call back seemed like forever, but eventually arrived. The doctor talked to the specialist first and then I was put on the phone. She asked me quite a few questions and then told me she was positive that I had a detached retina. These were her instructions: I was to go home and do absolutely nothing – just go to bed and I was to go to a Retina Specialist at 8:00 in the morning. I was also told I couldn’t go to work on Friday. So Thomas drove me home and the first thing I did was look up “Detached Retina” on the internet.

What Is It?
The retina is the light-sensitive layer at the back of the eye that converts visual images into nerve impulses that are relayed to the brain to produce sight. When the retina separates from the deeper layers of the eyeball that normally support and nourish it, the retina is said to be detached. Without this nourishment and support, the retina does not function properly, and this can cause a variety of visual symptoms. For example, if the retina detaches near the macula, the part of the eye that is responsible for the center of the visual field, then there may be a sudden, significant blurring or loss of vision. However, if the area of detachment is closer to the outer edges of the retina, then the visual loss may be more like a curtain being drawn over one side of the visual field (the "curtain effect"). Other symptoms of retinal detachment may include floating shapes in the field of vision or brief flashes of light.
Although there are several types of retinal detachment, the most common one starts when a tear or hole develops in the retina, and some of the gel-like substance that fills the inside of the eye (vitreous fluid) leaks through the opening. Eventually, the leaking vitreous fluid gets behind the retina, separating the retina from other layers of the eye.
The retinal tear that triggers a retinal detachment sometimes is caused by trauma.

More often, it is caused by a change in the gel-like consistency of the vitreous fluid that can occur as a part of aging. This age-related change can occur unpredictably in older people, and there is no way to prevent it. Once this type of retinal detachment develops and causes symptoms, it can progress to total blindness if it is not repaired promptly.

Now that I had that information I was even more freaked out. So I followed the doctor’s advice and went to bed. I was not looking forward to my appointment in the morning.

Friday, June 6, 2008
I arrived at Eye Associates about 15 minutes earlier than my appointment – I figured there would be paperwork to fill out. So after getting all that out of the way I waited to see the doctor. I saw Dr. Robert Reidy (one of 3 retinal specialist at this location). He examined my eye and did some testing. It took him about 10 minutes and he confirmed the detached retina diagnosis. He explained to me what was happening and what the options were for treatment. I was scared and concerned! I didn’t want to lose my eyesight but the treatment options were scary. He told me he wanted to try a procedure right then and there in the office. Here is what he wanted to do and ended up doing today:

Pneumatic retinopexy. Your eye doctor injects a gas bubble into your eye. The bubble floats to the detached area and presses lightly against the tear, closing the tear and flattening the retina so that no fluid can build up under it. Your doctor then uses a freezing probe (cryopexy) or laser beam (photocoagulation) to seal the tear in the retina.

After this procedure my eye was bandaged and an appointment was made for 9:00 on Saturday morning. I was told to stay in an upright position with my headed tilted to the right. This was to help the gas bubble press against the retina to help get the fluid out from behind the retina. The other thing the doctor told me was that I “was out of commission”. When I asked him what that meant he said I couldn’t do anything at all. He told me I would be out of work for at least 4 to 6 weeks, I had to cancel a continuing education class that was scheduled for Monday, June 9, 2008 and a trip scheduled for June 10 – 15. I was not to do any exercising, no walking, no housework or cleaning. I couldn’t even read. The most I could do was sit on the couch and watch TV. For the rest of the day and that night my eye was so uncomfortable. I had about 4 out 10 pain and it was uncomfortable staying in one position. I didn’t get much sleep and I was anxious to get to my appointment the next morning to see what the doctor had to say.

Saturday, June 7, 2008
I met Dr. Reidy at 9:00 this morning at Eye Associates. He checked the eye and there was still fluid behind the retina. I told him about the pain and he prescribed some percocet. He told me to go home, stay in the position he had given me and to come back on Monday and see Dr. Frank Wyant. If there was still fluid I would have to have surgery on Tuesday. I wasn’t thrilled about the whole thing. In fact I was even more nervous and concerned than ever. I just couldn’t imagine having someone cutting on my eye. So the next few days were pure torture just waiting to find out what would happen. I spent the rest of the day sitting on the couch watching TV. I quickly learned that I am not one to sit still for long periods of time. I was antsy and uncomfortable – and being worried about my eye didn’t help. All I wanted to do was get up and clean the house or do laundry. But I didn’t – I followed the doctor’s guidelines and stayed in the required position. It was another night of uncomfortable sleeping – I don’t usually sleep sitting up.

Sunday, June 8, 2008
Today I followed the doctor’s guidelines. I stayed in the position I was supposed to be in and just sat and watched TV. I think this may have been one of the most boring days I have ever had.

Monday, June 9, 2008
My appointment wasn’t until 2:00 this afternoon. So I spent the day doing what the doctor told me I could do – absolutely nothing. When I got to my appointment I was extremely nervous. So Dr. Wyant did his examination. Unfortunately, there was still fluid behind the retina. This was something I didn’t want to hear. The doctor informed me that they would have to do surgery. Dr. Reidy was available the next day and so it was scheduled. There are no words to describe how horrible I felt upon hearing that I had to have the surgery. I became extremely nervous and anxious. Dr. Wyant went over all that would happen in the surgery and told me to go home and rest. I had to be in Albuquerque at 9:00 in the morning – I had all night to contemplate the surgery. Thomas really helped me to see that it was this or lose the eye – there really wasn’t anything that would be helped by worrying.

*I will continue with Part II starting with the surgery. I am only allowed small increments of time on the computer – so I will post the next part as soon as it is written.
Detached Retina (Part II)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Detached Retina

Well, I have been out of commission for a couple of weeks now. On Thursday, June 5th I realized I had no vision out of my left eye. That night at Urgent Care I was told I probably had a detached retina. On Friday, June 6th that was confirmed by a specialist. I have since undergone one procedure and two surgeries. I am not allowed to do anything - no working, no walking, no housework, nothing strenous - I have to stay in a face down position for most of the day. Just recently the doctor told me I could spend small amounts of time on the computer as long as my head was in a face down position. I am trying to document everything that has gone on and will post all of the information at a later time.

Detached Retina (Part I)

Wordle - Word Cloud for My Detached Retina

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Hell - Exothermic or Endothermic?

The following was sent to me by Thomas' cousin Ruth. I thought it was hilarious. I hope you enjoy it.

Leave it to a college student!!!

The following is an actual question given on a University of Washington chemistry mid term. The answer by one student was so 'profound' that the professor shared it with colleagues, via the Internet, which is, of course, why we now have the pleasure of enjoying it as well : Bonus Question: Is Hell exothermic (gives off heat) or endothermic (absorbs heat)? Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law (gas cools when it expands and heats when it is compressed) or some variant. One student, however, wrote the following:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is changing in time. So we need to know the rate at which souls are moving into Hell and the rate at which they are leaving. I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to Hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving. A s for how many souls are entering Hell, let's look at the different religions that exist in the world today. Most of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to Hell. Since there is more than one of these religions and since people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all souls go to Hell. With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in Hell to increase exponentially. Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in Hell because Boyle's L aw sta tes that in order for the temperature and pressure in Hell to stay the same, the volume of Hell has to expand proportionately as souls are added.
This gives two possibilities:
1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter Hell, then the temperature and pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell breaks loose.
2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in Hell, then the temperature and pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.
So which is it? If we accept the postulate given to me by Teresa during my Freshman year that, 'It will be a cold day in Hell before I sleep with you,' and take into account the fact that I slept with her last night, then number two must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is exothermic and has already frozen over. The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has frozen over, it follows that it is not accepting any more souls and is therefore, extinct.......leaving only Heaven, thereby proving the existence of a divine being which explains why, last night, Teresa kept shouting 'Oh my God.'