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For whatever reason, I was one of the chosen few designated for "twitch duty".It started out very innocently but gradually worsened to the point that I was referred to a neurosurgeon. He wanted me to avoid the surgery and opted instead to start me on Neurontin,
.I was not in favor of ingesting any kind of medication,since it would only treat the symptoms and not the root cause so I was referred to a visiting neurosurgeon from Hahnemann Hospital in Philadelphia.(I live right outside of Trenton,N.J.)This doctor held a clinic in St. Francis Hospital in Trenton.Long story short, he tried 2 rounds of Botox-20 units at 2 different sites week1 with no change.The next attempt was 80 units at 3 different sites (enough to paralyze a horse,he remarked),but the result was the same -no relief. Eight months later,I underwent my first MVD at the University of Penn in Philly and another failure.So three and a half months later I was referred to Dr. Amin Kassam at the University of Pittsburgh where I finally met with success.After 4 plus hours on the operating table (my wife was starting to get nervous because she was the last spouse waiting in a waiting room that 4 hours earlier had been jam packed).Dr. Kassam said that on a scale of 1 to 10 I was an eleven!This was due mainly to scar tissue that had formed after the first operation.Trying to find a neurosurgeon willing to perform a "redo " operation is no easy task,but this is one of Dr.Kassam's specialties. From the beginning of this odyssey, I experienced many of the side effects that they told me could occur including an asymmetrical smile from the Botox although according to my wife the right side of my face appeared to be 10 years younger than the left.I also experienced triple vision after the first operation each time that I opened my eyes(this Lasted 26 hours)By triple vision I mean that I saw everything in 3's.I had a paralyzed vocal chord which caused me to whisper only for a week.My hearing was adversely affected .The customary nausea was in evidence along with a wobbly gait.The right side of my skull had been violated twice in three and a half months,so a certain amount of pain and discomfort were to be expected and ,needless to say this was the case.But lo and behold, the eighth wonder of the world-the healing power of the body made an appearance and for twelve and a half years all was well ,but recently I have begun to experience a lower lip/middle chin sensation reminiscent of my past experience, so I think I will once have to contact Dr.Amin Kassam who has now taken up residence in Milwaukee,Wisconsin.Hopefully ,he will once again be able to do a "redo" of a "redo". I am currently a New York Yankee,Philadelphia Phillie,Philadelphia Eagle sports fan and am beginning to think that there might be something to the old stress angle.The Pope just paid us a visit,maybe I can request some prayers from his Holiness. Oh well,wish me luck.
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