Comments on the Economic Crisis

Although the root causes of the current financial and economic crisis are still being debated (and will continue until the next large crisis hits), one issue that stems out of of the current discussions is the softening in the last 20 or so years of government regulations in the financial markets. Starting with the Reagan administration and later complemented by the Clinton presidency, laws that were designed to “regulate” financial markets were eliminated in the US. This, combined with a push for innovation in the global financial markets, where new technologies were a key factor, and a “risky” monetary policy (continuous lowering of interest rates in the last 10 or so years), indicate that “governance” issues played a critical role in its onsetting.

In the last 40 years or so we have seen

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No Way Back for My Bad Back

Although I am feeling better – my left leg pain is now minimal but I still cannot sit for more than 5-10 minutes in a row, it seems that one of my trilogy of hernias in my back has decided to go astray and attack, without any scruples, one of my root nerves in my backbone.

The Neurologist asked me on Tuesday to have yet another MRI. The bad news came in yesterday afternoon. I am not sure why my hernias seem to be going in the opposite direction as what i had originally planned. I have been trying to take good care of myself and have been in good spirits to fight this to the end. The pain started after I came back from London so probably there is a correlation here. But where?

At any rate, the neurologist has asked me to consult with a Neurosurgeon to decide if a need surgery. It now seems

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Bad Back Back Again

Soon after my return from London early this month, I started to feel a sharp pain in my left leg, from the hip to the big toe. Fascinating stuff, needless to say.

I initially thought it was just a temporary thing. But as the days went by, the pain started to get worse to become almost constant. I had no choice but to restart the now very appetizing pain killers to be able to function and try to continue with my “normal” life.

Last Friday was probably the worst day of all. In the office, I could not seat at all unless I prepared myself for the sharp pain. After somehow surviving the train trip back home, we went for dinner in White Plains. Not the best idea, that’s for sure. By the time the evening was over I was in severe pain.

Today I was unable to go to the office. My back pain has now

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Back to the Office

So i finally decided to go back to the office today. The plan is to take it easy and reintegrate to work on a paced basis. So I am going to start with 3 days a week and two days at home, telecommuting.

It has been almost a month since my back decided to quit on me. But I will never quit on my back. I am afraid I cannot afford to do that…

The 29 minute train ride from Scarsdale to Gran Central seemed longer than that. Having to be seated for that period of time felt weird and uncomfortable – but painless at any rate.

There was a staff meeting at 10am which i barely made. A nice way to be back, right dwon my alley. I had a hard time sitting down through out the meeting so I took small walks or just stod up and stretched. A couple of hours later I was back in my office trying to adjust

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Knife in the Water, for now

I saw the back surgeon my doctor recommended last Friday at the NYU Spine Center, located very close to Union Square in Manhattan.

The good news is that I do not need surgery. He actually told me that my MRI looked pretty good to him and that anyone suggesting I should have surgery was just trying to make money out of my bad back. In a way, I was glad to hear this as I was quite reluctant to face surgery, especially since one of my sisters had a similar operation and the outcome was apparently far from optimal.

The not so good news is that I will have to keep on moving ahead with my back as is. The surgeon doctor said there is 90% change that in my particular case regular physical therapy and exercise will solve my current back problems within the next 6 to 9 months (if not before). If I

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A knife in my Bad Back? – Backstabbing!

I saw my doctor this morning and asked him for advice on next steps given my evident lack of progress.

He neatly explained to me that one of the three hernias (L3-L4 for those who really want to know the gory details) I have is the one causing the pain on the left side of my back and down my left leg. He informed me that as long as I do not sit for long periods of time I could go on like this forever. However, since my line of work actually requires sitting on a chair for most of the day, including traveling for longs hours all over the globe, this option is not really viable.

After looking at the MRI slides and touching my back (he actually located the exact spot where my disc is pinching the root nerve), he recommended I see a specialist/surgeon to consider the options. He also confirm

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Back to Bed, with Flowers

It came as a complete surprise to me.

This was a long weekend as today is a US Holiday. Andrés and Ana went to Washington to visit my sister. I was home alone for a few days.

While in the house I spent most of my time upstairs. I was there when the door-bell rang Saturday afternoon. I looked out through one of the bedroom’s and saw an unknown car parked in front of the house. It has to be a mistake, I told my self. The bell rang again but I could not move fast enough to go ALL the way downstairs to check who was making the call. I went back to bed and heard the car leave.

A few minutes later the phone rung. It was our next door neighbor who succinctly informed me that “my flowers” were waiting for me at her house. I did not quite understand this. I then thought some one must have sent

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Bad Back Worse

My doctor recommended I go to the Chiropractor. Since I cannot drive a car or walk long distances, I search the Web for one which is locate close to home. I found one a mile away from the house who takes my health insurance.

The Chiropractor saw me Tuesday and said my back looked pretty bad. I sort of knew that, no?. He also ordered an immediate lower back MRI to assess the extent of the damage. The results came in yesterday.

I was shocked.

The hernias in my lower back have multiplied like a virus. Now I have three bad hernias instead of the good olde one and only one. And one in particular is the culprit for the pain in my lower back and left leg. Lower back hernias tend to attack root nerves that we have in our backbone and thus create severe pain. Most people know this pain as sciatica.

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Still Bad Back

My back is progressing slowly. Thats is the good news.

Now I have more mobility but I quickly found out that I cannot t sit down for more than 20 minutes in a row. The pain and stiffness are easy reminders as to why this is not possible.

So I decided to pay avisit to the family doctor. The issue here is the long drive to the City to see him plus the waiting time ocne in his office. Oh well, as long as I do not sit while waiitn gI will be fine. Not so sure about the drive.

I have canceled my trip to Spain since there was no way I could be sitting in an airplane for 8 hours or so. I am not sure they bought my bad back story,

Let us see what the doctor says. I am still hoping to be back at the office ASAP. But I now think my back is going to win that discussion .

I am now a bit tired of

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Bad Back Back

My back is progressing very slow in spite of all the additional medicines I got from my doctor. One of them is a pain killer which helps but it is just a panacea. I know…

Although I can now move around the house (slowly and gingerly ) I cannot sit for long periods of time. And transitions from sitting to standing and vice-versa are a mayor operation as it has to be have to done in slow motion -or else feel the sharp pain in my back and left leg.

I just spoke to my doctor who said that we should wait until Monday. If by then I am still in bad shape then he suggested I undertake some tests (back MRI, etc.). I do have a small hernia in my lower back but it is now apparent that it is not so small any more…

My eye has improved thanks to some eye drops I bought in Bogotá and which I

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