Contributors

20 September - Doctor appointment

An appointment with our GP today. For the last few weeks I have been bothered by a fungal infection causing patches of dry, itchy, scabby skin around both my ankles. It is probably the result of my immune system being weakened. I saw the doc a couple of weeks ago and she prescribed a steroid-based ointment which had no effect at all. Now I have been given a different ointment to try which I hope will be more effective.

The GP asked how my walking was coming on. I told her that I was fine walking on level ground with my eyes focused straight ahead but that I still tended to lose my balance if I turned my head, for example to look over my shoulder or down at my feet if I had to negotiate uneven ground or dodge around pets or small children.

The doc got me to close my eyes, extend one arm and try to touch the tip of my nose. I did this with both arms and then repeated it. Each time, I missed my nose by a couple of inches. The doc said that she is not a neurologist but she thinks that the part of my brain that deals with balance has been damaged and so I am keeping my balance using my vision mainly. She doesn't think that the lost ability will come back - my brain is just learning a new way of dealing with it.

One day I will have to see if I can still ride my bike. I have ridden it down the road and back one time since my brain surgery - but that was probably before I started the radiotherapy.