Updated: August 12, 2017
Similar to my What I’m Doing Now page, this is a continuously updated listing of every health issue I have. I’m doing this for three reasons:
1. I like full transparency with my readers
This website is not about applying a filter to my life and making it appear to be something it’s not. It’s about the reality of being human, about aging, about overcoming the challenges that life throws at us. So you need to see what’s going on behind the facade of a nice profile photo.
2. I want my readers to know that they are not struggling alone
Everyone assumes that they are the only ones dealing with stuff, that the image that other people project to the world is real. That everyone else is so happy and successful and healthy (or at least happier and more successful and healthier than you). This is totally not the truth, as I explain in this article.
I’m a teeny-tiny bit of public persona, in that I have a website and reach a few people out of the billions on the planet. So you might look over this well-crafted online presence and draw the conclusion that my life is in many ways awesome. Well, my life is the same as yours in 99% of the things that really matter…like my health. So take a close look at my reality and know that without a doubt, here is a person (me) who is struggling with many of the same things you are.
3. I don’t think people should be embarrassed about the way their bodies work (or don’t work)
It’s socially OK to say “I have a sore on my hip.” But it’s not socially acceptable to say “I have sore on my butt.” That made you squirm, didn’t it? (For the record, I don’t have a sore there.) Why are we so prudish about this? Why is one part of your body OK to talk about, but you can’t talk about something that is located mere inches away? Why does mental health have a stigma? Everyone is so childish about this, and I won’t be a part of it.
So, on this page, I don’t hold anything back. Maybe it will help you feel more comfortable about your own health and wellness issues.
A few more comments
As you can see, I work very diligently to address every single health issue I have. I wish I’d started sooner, because I endured many things (e.g. depression) for far too long. Frankly, when I write all this stuff down, I’m shocked at how much there is, but I’m glad it’s all in the “getting taken care of” column and not the “ignoring it and hoping it will go away on its own” column.
I’m eternally grateful for good insurance coverage, which I know a lot of people don’t have. But I also have never hesitated to pay whatever is necessary out-of-pocket for good health. I’ve never understood people who’ll make huge car or house payments without blinking but put off medical care that is much more important in the long run.
Every single thing you read on this page is known to one or more of my doctors. I’m not managing anything based only on internet wisdom, and that includes the supplements I list.
So here goes. Enjoy…or feel superior…or whatever.
This Is Not Health Advice
This is it: “The line.”
When you cross this line, you are acknowledging that you are a mature, thoughtful adult who is responsible for making your own health decisions no matter what anyone else does…including not-a-doctor Scott Weigle. You also promise not to be dumb about self-medicating or using stuff you find on the internet as an excuse not to seek professional help.
This line is like one of those tire-puncturing strips that you can only drive over one way. Once you cross, there’s no going back…so let’s keep moving forward.
Issues that are completely resolved
The short list of things I don’t have to do anything to maintain. In approximate order of resolution.
Irritable bowel syndrome
- Resolved spontaneously
- Corrected with LASIK surgery
Deviated nasal septum
- Corrected with surgery
Right Knee pain
- Corrected with two surgeries
Rotator cuff tear, right shoulder
- Corrected with surgery
Extensive wear and breakdown of all teeth
- Corrected with full mouth reconstruction (32 crowns)
Chronic lower back pain
- Corrected with surgery (lumbar fusion)
Issues that I’m working on
This has been never ending for the last 40 years. Holding steady at about 190. I have to be very careful about cutting calories as it can make me more susceptible to depression. I’m nearly at the point of stabilizing my workout regimen, which will make it easier to experiment with calorie levels. I’m not overweight, but certainly not as trim as I’d like to be.
I’ve dealt with this off and on for years. Right now (and for the last two years) it’s only on the right. As long as I wear a splint every night and good arch support in my shoes, it’s OK. I’m actually optimistic that it’s nearly healed as I have no symptoms at all during the day. But I’ll keep using the splint for a few more months to be certain…re-injury sets you all the way back.
Difficulty emptying bladder
Removal of ejaculatory duct cyst that was blocking urine flow was somewhat successful and a resection of my bladder neck totally resolved any flow issue. But I’m leaving this in the “issues I’m working on” category until I see how my most-recent procedure (July, 2017) affects my feeling of difficulty completely emptying my bladder long term. My urologist says that it can take up to eight months for full healing and all inflammation to subside.
Dry eyes affecting vision
At my follow-up in June, 2017, more oil glands had closed. In addition to continuing with the items below, I underwent a Lipiflow treatment to reopen at least some of the glands. Follow up in December, 2017.
- High-potency fish oil daily (already taking for management of Triglycerides)
- Daily hot packs (Bruder mask) ~5 minutes each morning, followed by lid massage to stimulate oil glands
- Eyelid scrubs twice a week to remove excess dead skin than can block oil ducts
- Restasis eye drops, which are WAY too expensive
Issues that I’ve learned to manage
I’ll be managing these for the rest of my life. I’ve learned to be OK with that.
- Avoid all caffeine
Auditory Processing Disorder
- Minimize background noise
- Avoid loud environments
- Light therapy, fall/winter/spring
- No caffeine
- No alcohol
- Careful monitoring food intake
- Vigorous exercise five days a week
Mild social anxiety
- Avoid many social situations
- Ask people not to hug me
Left knee tendonitis
Caused by patella misalignment (see 1981 surgery). Non-operable.
- Currently asymptomatic, given my exercise routine. Strengthening with exercise bands twice a week if symptoms recur
Caused by mild arthritis in cervical spine
- Rub on trigger point in shoulder once a week to keep it broken up (golf ball in sock)
- Cervical epidural injection as needed
I.e. Difficulty seeing up close
- Reading glasses
Heart disease risk due to high triglycerides and mild blockage shown on coronary calcium scan
- 6 daily high-potency fish oil, split between meals
- Fiber with each meal (psyllium husks
- Plant sterols with each meal
- Monitor with coronary calcium scan yearly
Lower leg edema
Caused by venous insufficiency and/or lymphedema
- Diosmin/Hesperidan (supplement)
- Pycnogenal (supplement)
- Support stockings as needed (rarely)
Intermittent eczema, atopic dermatitis and psoriasis
- Clobetasol cream and Protopic ointment as needed (prescription)
Actinic keratosis on scalp, ears and face
- Annual blue light treatment to remove several layers of skin
Yeast/fungal overgrowth on skin
- Soap with salicylic acid for armpits and groin
- Anti-fungal cream on feet twice a week
- Pumice heels twice a week
Ear, nose, throat
Phlegm / clearing throat
- Atrovent (Ipatroprium) nasal spray twice daily (prescription)
- Seasonal allergies: Flonase (over the counter) and Zyrtec eye drops
- Breakthrough phlegm due to dry throat: Halls lozenges
Moderate reflux (LPR)
Only when prone at night
- Try to avoid eating 3 hours before bed (this never works out…)
- Alginic acid tablets if I feel post-meal reflux occurring
- Somnodent dental device to keep airway open
- Avoid foods I’m sensitive to:
Dairy, eggs, coffee, chocolate, caffeine, alcohol
- Soluble fiber with every meal. This has been the most-effective treatment of anything I’ve tried; essentially a complete cure. A fortunate byproduct of my cholesterol-improvement regimen
- Treat as needed with aloe/lidocaine gel (sunburn gel)
- Avoid foods I’m sensitive to: dairy, eggs, coffee, chocolate, caffeine, alcohol
- Vigorous exercise (see above). I don’t know why, but it is part of the solution.
Some dates are approximate.
- Left knee. Repair dislocating kneecap that was originally injured in wrestling.
- LASIK to correct nearsightedness and astigmatism
- Repair of deviated nasal septum, originally injured in high school wrestling
- Right knee surgery clean up joint to correct consistent pain (unsuccessful)
- Right knee surgery to realign kneecap to correct consistent pain
- Right shoulder surgery to repair rotator cuff, torn years before when whitewater rafting
- L5/S1 lumbar fusion to correct degenerated disk
- Removal of urinary ejaculatory duct cyst to improve urine flow and retention
- Resection of bladder neck to improve urine flow and retention
Physicians I have an ongoing relationship with
I’m a patient of record with the following:
- Family practice (integrative medicine physician)
- Orthopedists (more than one in same office)
- Ear, Nose and Throat
- Family dentist
- Clobetasol (steroid cream for eczema, psoriasis)
- Triamcinolone (steroid cream for eczema)
- Hydrocortisone (steroid cream for eczema)
- Protopic (ointment for eczema, psoriasis)
- Ipatropium bromide (nasal spray for excess phlegm)
- Restasis (eye drops for dry eyes)
- Sulfasalazine (tablet for psoriatic arthritis)
Again, all have been discussed with my doctor, who is both an M.D. and a Naturopath.
- Fish oil (triglycerides)
- Caprylic acid (yeast/fungal overgrowth)
- Multivitamin (because I eat a limited diet)
- DHEA (hormone support)
- COQ10 (ubiquinol) (anti-oxidant)
- Diosvein/Hesperidan (circulation / leg edema)
- Pycnogenol (circulation / leg edema)
- Vitamin K (arterial health)
- Vitamin D3 (because I don’t get enough sun)
- Plant sterols (to block absorption of cholesterol)
- Fiber (psyllium husks) (to reduce cholesterol reabsorption)
After years (decades) of trying all manner of fitness/strength routines, I now focus on functional fitness.
Daily, Monday through Friday
- Core strengthening exercises
- Balance routine
- Sprints on exercise bike
- Pullups, pushups and dips (two sets each, slow repetitions)
- Shovel glove sledgehammer routine (12-pound sledge)(
Have a comment about this? Use my contact form.
Until next time… remember: Think about it. A lot. Then do something.
Never Miss an OverExamined Life Article
If you want to be sure to NOT miss anything I write, this is the place to do it. You'll get about 2 emails a month. Your address is never shared or sold.
Note: If you've signed up for ANY of my offers, you are already on this list.