Art For Arachnoiditis

Sheila Kalkbrenner
Posted May 27, 2014 from United States
Art For Arachnoiditis
Art For Arachnoiditis
Art For Arachnoiditis (1/1)

Arachnoiditis is a grace-sucking spinal cord injury caused by neurotoxins in spinal injections and invasive spinal procedures. I am an arachnoiditis survivor working to give a face to this hidden, permanent, medical injury.

Living With Arachnoiditis: An Art, Adaptability and Empowerment Project Is a portrait of: Arachnoiditis Survival, its origins, the humanity living it, and the power to change it.

The Living With Arachnoiditis project is intended to send an empowering message for change to: arachnoidtis survivors & their support networks, persons living with chronic pain, administrative bodies governing medical policies resulting in adverse outcomes, professionals teaching/administering healing through art, employers who must accommodate arachnoiditis in the work place, and other artists with disabilities.

I have been an artist for twenty years. I am a NYS certified teacher and US Army veteran who was working full-time as an after school program manager when I developed spinal adhesive arachnoiditis of the lumbar and thoracic spine that was caused by the off label use of 5% lidocaine with epinephrine for single injection spinal anesthesia during a routine knee arthroscopy in March of 2007. (This formula is NOT FDA approved for spinal injections.) It left me permanently disabled at the age of 37. I have learned to adapt to keep on living and that I am NOT the ONLY one. I would like to share what I have learned with other members of the Arachnoiditis Survivor Community.Through art, I have achieved my Physical and Vocational Rehabilitation goals. I finally own my own art studio and opened it to the public in 2013. I can only be vertical for three hours at a time. So, I use the Ostrich Cot to draw portraits and complete other projects here. Now that I am established, I would like to start doing conceptual portraits of other survivors as a way to empower them, to exchange ideas for Reasonable Accommodations, and to tell our story. It is my hope that this and other Art For Arachnoiditis Projects at SheilaLynnK Art Studio will help to increase awareness and prevention efforts that will minimize the number of people harmed by these off-label practices.

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