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What Is Wrong With My Knee? – Part 3

Oh heavens, and then I didn’t follow up again for like six months. That’s terrible.

Anyway, basically, after a month or two of waiting, my MRI test results came back completely fine.

My knee still hurt for a while afterwards but gradually, over the months, the pain has gone away entirely.

A mystery, basically. Doctor said knees are funny things. Sometimes they just fuck up for a while for no real reason.

So that is the end of the story. It was really quite easy and stress-free to get it seen to, and even though I was in a lot of pain for a while, turned out to be nothing. Moral of the story: if your knee hurts, request an MRI, it’s probably grand.

What is wrong with my knee? – Part 2

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You know, I said I would follow up after I went to the doctor’s about my knee, and then didn’t, which makes me as bad as one of the people I was trying to avoid. That’s terrible! Except not too bad, because I’m following up now.

I went to the doctor’s. After a lengthy wait, involving a very strange medical cartoon on the television, a nice doctor examined me. Good news, probably! He tugged and pushed and bent and twisted my leg, and concluded that he could see no sign of any ligament damage, which is what his initial concern was. He did notice that it was slightly swollen, even after all this time, although this was after a 20-minute walk to the surgery, which may have had something to do with it.

He wasn’t able to tell me what’s wrong, but he did refer me for an MRI scan, which I’ll be attending next week. Possibilities include a small tear of the meniscus, or “something to do with the fluid in your knee,” whatever that means. The good news is he thinks that surgery would be very unlikely to be needed: knees aren’t good things to surgically mess around with, he said, so unless the problem was causing extreme discomfort/disability, a course of physiotherapy and simple lifestyle changes would almost always be the recommendation.

I will follow up after the MRI.

B.C. police refuse to reveal which drugs are deadly

A tweet from Ben Goldacre pointed me in the direction of something considerably alarming. In an absolutely extraordinary example of disregard for public health, the British Columbia police have refused to disclose important information about potentially lethal adulterated ecstasy tablets, on the grounds that they feel it would make taking other ecstasy tablets seem more acceptable.

Despite a series of deaths linked with PMMA – a highly dangerous chemical that’s been infrequently used to adulterate ecstasy tablets for a while now – police in Vancouver say that they are reluctant to reveal what the seized and tested adulterated tablets look like, because they don’t want users to think they are sanctioning other pills.

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Ecstasy, or hysteria? Part 3: Of course, the tabloids

It was today, when searching the Internet for any reports of what actually killed two men in Ayrshire earlier this year, that I instead discovered some new reports of ecstasy deaths. (Incidentally, those toxicology reports remain elusive, which – pure speculation, of course – would suggest to me that there was no evidence that ecstasy killed them at all.)

This time the stories – which I somehow hadn’t picked up on over the past few days – relate to two deaths at London’s Alexandra Palace, which has recently played host to a series of dance events. As well as the two fatalities, 20 further people were alleged to have been admitted to hospital, one of whom was critically ill.

It is ecstasy that takes the blame. And yet there is no evidence, it seems, that ecstasy was taken.

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