Ithaca Blog

Friday, September 05, 2008

Arnica, Anti-Amputation Medication

We've never done a health segment here before, but will now, to promote the powers of arnica, which saved us from a leg amputation this week, or at least the thoughts of it.

It all started (we will try to keep it brief, from start to end of it) with a terrible leg pain upon awakening one morning. It was like a bad charley horse, such as NFL players must have on Mondays.

But it lasted a few days, and got worse, to the point where we could barely put any weight on it, or move it, which is bad in a leg.

This is the point where thoughts of amputation came in. Not that we are hypochondriacal, more like fatalistic, like this thing is probably cancer, or arthritis, or rheumitism, or all three, and just has to go. A farewell to leg, as it were. We got ready to call our doctor.

Then we remembered a tube of arnica gel in the medicine cabinet, which had helped with a mild carpal tunnel syndrome situation a while back.

Of course, what is a tube of anything going to do in the face of a mighty medical malady like mine. But, we tried it that morning.

By the afternoon, all pain had vanished. Not a little, but completely.

What is this arnica? Is it in the morphine family? What happens if you ingest it? Is it like the drugs God keeps for himself?

We researched it. It is in the sunflower family. That seems humble and benign, but of course heroin starts out as poppy seeds.

Arnica is not good to ingest. Apparently it attracts blood to wherever it is and it will draw blood into your stomach.

It is not possible to apply it directly to the brain, but what if you could? Would you become carefree?

I suppose I am carefree enough as it is. I won't need to call my doctor now, nor pin my pants.

Arnica gel is available at GreenStar and, most likely, at most supermarkets and drug stores. You might want to stock up before surgeons try to criminalize it.

Dr. Burke
for Ithaca Blog

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