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rudi-h's Achievements

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  1. Thanks, I'll enquire about Coartem. PS, who is the doctor that treated you?
  2. Do you have a reference? It doesn't seem to be as simple as one would think. To date I've spent 4 full days in hospital and probably undergone upwards of R60k's worth of tests (blood tests, CT's, MRI's, Sonar's, X-rays etc.) just to get the diagnosis in the first place. Over and above this, I seem to have a very rare symptom of a rather complex disease, so it would require a doctor who is especially clued-up with Bilharzia, hence the question in the first place.
  3. I had the medication earlier this week, but the back pain (undiagnosed until last week as this is not a common symptom) had started early in the year (Jan or Feb), so I've been showing symptoms for 4 months prior to treatment. Thanks, I'm hoping that the back pain will also subside.
  4. Thanks, good to know I'm not all alone in this. I would like to ask though, have you (or anyone in the rowing fraternity that you know) ever had the lower back pain symptoms? I'll take your advice on the periodic treatment with praziquantel / biltricide to kill parasites that have not been killed in the first round of treatment, but is there anything else to resolve the damage to the nervous system? According to the abstract of the article below (I don't have access to the entire paper, nor am I likely to understand it), they suggest use of steroids and even surgery? Would be keen to know if there are any doctors in SA that might have this type of experience. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780444534903000224#:~:text=Schistosomal infection of the central,or result in severe complications.
  5. Honestly, if you're really keen on cycling and know that your bike won't be a white elephant, I'd urge you if at all possible to save up & double your budget. My bikes are my most valued assets (from a lifestyle perspective - not financial) and if you calculate the cost of ownership over 10 years, another R6k now becomes virtually immaterial. I've seen too many times that people (including myself) bought something cheap just to have severe buyers remorse a year later, saving up and buy something double the price tag within a year or two. You can get some really nice 2nd hand hardtail bikes for R10k+ with the weight, geometry and build quality that will serve you well for at least a decade to come. If you're going to buy a R6k cheapie, you likely won't enjoy the riding as much, fall subject to a never ending battle with punctures and mechanicals. Chances are almost guaranteed that you'll either give up on the sport altogether or throw multiples of your initial budget towards upgrades within the next 24 months.
  6. I got infected with Bilharzia in 2017. Symptoms were fatigue and lack of energy, but none of the typical symptoms such as blood in the urine etc. Long story short, it got diagnosed pretty quick and I took 2 sets of pills for treatment which solved the problem completely. Little did I know, that the medication is only effective on the larger parasites (those that typically cause the symptoms) and the parasite eggs seemingly remained dormant but present in my body. In Feb this year the parasites have awoken from their hibernation and presented as back pain (information which I would only find out earlier this week), over time turning into sudden bursts of fever and extreme headaches in the past weeks. After many tests I was diagnosed with bilharzia again (relapse from the earlier infection). I took the prescribed medication again and the headaches and fever symptoms are completely gone, however the back pain remains. From a brief internet search it seems that the exact condition is perhaps something called either Spinal Chord Schistosomiasis, Neuroschistosomiasis or Schistosomal myeloradiculopathy. I understand that this is caused by the mostly dormant parasite eggs and not the fully grown parasites responsible for the other symptoms. Is there separate treatment for the spinal cord symptoms caused by the eggs? It doesn't seem that the pills have done anything to relieve the back pain symptoms. Any help would be appreciated
  7. The R2/km quoted is ballpark but seems a bit low unless you do the majority of work yourself... Assuming that derailleurs, brake pistons, cranks, hubs, rims, spokes etc. have infinite life (they don't, but most of us would replace entire bikes before we replace these items) Drivetrain: Chain: 5000km @ R1000 = R0.20 / km Cassette = 10000km @ R2000 = R0.20 / km Chainrings = 20000km @ R1000 = R0.05 / km Brakes: Pads = 5000 km @ R500 = R0.10 / km Suspension Pivot bearings = 5000 km @ R500 = R0.10 / km Fork = 2000km @ R1000 = R0.50 / km Shock = 4000km @ R1000 = R0.25 / km Other Grips = 5000km @ R500 = R0.10 / km Tyres = 7500km @ R1800 = R0.24 / km Sealant = 2500km @ R200 = R0.08 / km Total parts = R1.82 / km Service charge (~40%) = R0.73 / km Total = R2.55 / km If you do 5000km / year, it's R12740 or ~R1000 / month based on the estimates above and how often you prefer to replace certain items.
  8. there are other (and better ways) to save water... getting rid of your lawn and swimming pool would be a good start along with a list of around 50 more do-able and practical things that I can think of right now... but please let us all just calm down and wash them nasty old crack-sweat infested bibs
  9. Understood, however the principles remain the same and the effect only worsens over 36 months (R2276/month). Scenario 1 gives you R80k in your savings account after 36 months (financing the bike instead of using savings) Scenario 2 gives you R95k in your savings account after 36 months, so the difference is R15k (self-financing; i.e. using your savings to buy the bike and saving up your monthly installment over the same time period)
  10. not to get personal, but it never makes sense to borrow money against 20% interest if your savings are accumulating at < 10%. Self-financing is always cheaper than what any institution can provide you with, that's the fundamental mechanism through which banks make money. let's do some math: I'll pick R60k (it's a multiple of 12 for easy calcs) . You borrow 60k to buy a bike with a loan agreement to pay off in 12 months. At 0% interest, you would pay back R5k each month. At 20% interest, you need to pay back R5581 instead of R5k. By the end of the year you have now paid R67k. (over 36 months that number would be R82k). if you had R60k and saved that at an optimistic 10% interest / growth, you would have ~R65k after 1 year Scenario 1: Borrow money. You pay installments of R67k. On your investment you've made R6k on your R60k investment, so you've got R66k at the end of the year. Scenario 2: Self-finance. You paid cash for your bike and start saving from scratch, however you put the R5580 towards your investment every month. At the same interest / gain you now have R70k in your investment account after the year and you've given nothing to the bank, so you've got R4k more after the year and you have your bike
  11. i have enve wheels and love it. all manufacturers have messed up a select few products along the line. Not that I condone inferior quality by any means, but as a whole I don't think they're any different to other manufacturing companies. It's all about how the local agents / suppliers deal with any issues. I broke 2 commencal frames due to poor welding. They owned up to the problem and didn't try to shift the blame, so I'll buy another commencal any day.
  12. my take: I shared boxerulez's opinion until I learnt what they do... In short, I've had a load of crashes and injuries (fractured vertebrae, ribs, ankles, footbones + multiple tendon, ligament and muscle tears, dislocated knees and shoulders etc. etc. over the years). I've been to many good medical professionals and there's no one-stop shop. This is my (unqualified) understanding as someone who've been diagnosed and treated by the entire food chain of medical professions on many occasions: Dr / Specialist: Good with diagnosis of serious issues and obviously surgery, however be careful of the first surgeon who wants to dig a a knife into you, so get a second/third/fourth opinion before surgery. As good as surgeons are, they don't see 10% of the sports injuries out there and generally only deal with hard core issues, so I've heard of many tales where they told their patients something like "You'll never be able to compete in *insert sport here* again". So in my experience it's worth going to a physio, bio and chiro in addition to a surgeon for alternative opinions before quitting your sport or committing to surgery. Physio: They work on muscles, especially acute muscle issues such as tears, pulls, spasms etc. Great in the initial stages / first phase of rehab (injury or surgery) or if you have an obvious muscle issues / spasm etc. after a crash. Biokineticist: They also work on muscles, but not acute muscle soreness / spasm so it's different to a physio. They measure (good ones at least) individual muscle strength in relation to other muscles in your body and are therefore the best people to identify imbalances, lack of movement or lack of strength / activation in muscles etc.. Great for us cyclists who often learn to compensate over many years due to lack of strength somewhere in our bodies, and also an essential final step of the post-surgery rehab process Chiro: They work on the skeleton, so generally they can identify when joints aren't moving as they should or where full range of motion is not achieved on a joint level. I'm pretty new to this, but I've been referred by a biokineticist who said my issue is with restricted joint movement that causes muscle spasms, so fixing the muscles (i.e. going to a physio) only would never solve the root cause of the problem. Summary: Each of these professions see various injuries on a daily basis, and irrespective of their methods, they are uniquely skilled to help you identify or treat your issue. In their own right each one will have varying degrees of success depending on your specific issue, so saying that Physio's are better than Bio's or vice versa, or that Chiro's are bogus/pseudoscience would be a silly. If one doesn't work, try another and let them explain what they see, that info can help the next person to refine your diagnosis.
  13. I'm no coach, but I've been running pretty consistently for better part of 15 years. Being heavy(ish) for a runner, even in my prime years at 26 I couldn't run more than 3 times a week. If I'd step it up to 4 or more runs a week it'd be knee aches, next time it would be shin splints, achilles tendon and the list goes on. I bought a Garmin for the first time about 4 years ago and noticed that all my running metrics were RED. My cadence was a tad shy of 160spm, but at first I laughed it off. I then read some of the white papers from "First Beat" and realized there was quite a bit of science behind Garmin's metrics that made me think I should work on cadence. Long story short, I increased my running cadence to 180 spm and it made the world of difference. Now even at 8kg's heavier and touching 40, I've recently been running as good as ever and I hardly remember what a running injury feels like... So from my experience, goal spm is super important and stepping it up to ~180 spm was the best thing I've ever done for my own running ability and pleasure.
  14. climbing is a W/kg game... Either get stronger or get lighter, or hopefully a little bit of both... A little reading can go a long way, I'd recommend: for more power: Time Crunched Cyclist from Chris Carmichael for weight loss: Racing Weight from Matt Fitzgerald 12 weeks is just enough time for finishing the Time Crunched Training Program and you should be able to shed a few kg's also without compromising your recovery and fuelling.
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