My Health Scare

Two months ago on Sunday September 11th 2022, I noticed that my left arm and hand started swelling up and turning blue seemingly out of nowhere. I thought it was a pulled muscle or something from all the guitar I had been playing that week as I was spending lots of hours trying to write a new lesson.

So I went to the ER that night and after they did an ultrasound, they told me that I had a Blood Clot in my left arm and they were going to do all they could to keep something fatal from happening. I had to stay in the ER for several hours while they did more tests and put me on an IV of Blood Thinners to keep it from moving to my lungs. I don’t think I’ve prayed that much at once in my lifetime.

Swelling from Clot in my Arm

It seemed to come out of nowhere as I just had a full check up and everything came back great. My cholesterol which has been high in the past even came down to 156. So this event was a real eye opener.

Fortunately the CT scan was clear so no clots were in my lungs and they said I was able to go home.

When I arrived back home at around 7am I started on 5 days of Blood Thinner injections and then moved to capsule Blood Thinners which I’ll be on for 6 months.

I guess God is not done with me yet on this earth. It was an extremely scary event and the doctors said I was lucky that I came in when I did.

The past two months have been pretty difficult as I’ve been trying to make sense of this whole thing and also figure out how am I going to move forward with everything. Sleeping has been difficult and my arm has been hurting a pretty good bit so it’s been a challenge.

In the last few weeks though things have gotten much better.

I started doing sessions with Jerald Harscher about Body Mapping to learn how to move more while I’m playing and understand more about how my body is supposed to move. It’s based on the Alexander Technique which many Classical musicians study and will help me learn how to get in a better position when playing guitar and sitting at a computer. So far it’s been extremely helpful and I feel like after this is all over I’ll be playing guitar better than ever.

One of the main reasons I contacted Jerald is that he has treated a drummer who had pretty much the exact situation I have. He had a DVT out of nowhere in his arm. This was many years ago but Jerald told me he made a full recovery and has been fine for years now.

After doing a lot of internet research myself after this event occurred I came across a high profile YouTuber iJustine who had a very similar experience except she waited longer to go to the ER and ended up having the clot go to her lungs.

Since the Doctors said this was a provoked DVT I will need to get more movement throughout the day as well and not sit so much. I decided to get one of those Apple Watches to remind me to get up and move every hour but also it tracks your standing minutes per hour which is great. I’m trying to get at least 5-10 standing minutes per hour and it’s been really helpful for me feeling better.

Anyways, hope to make some videos relatively soon. I’ve worked up a different set for the videos moving forward that I think works well so I don’t have to be in a cramped position for the camera and when I’m writing music at the computer.

Thank God I am still here as if I would have waited to go to the ER say till the next day I’m not sure what would have happened. The 15 Year Anniversary of the site is early next year and looking forward to the new era for my lessons.

Thanks to all of you who have watched any of the videos. Back in 2007 I decided to make this website my career and thanks to all of you it has worked out. Looking forward to the next 15 years!


[ Update Sunday 11- 6 – 2022 ]

A few other things to point out. I have no family history of clots or disease that we know of. I have an ultrasound and a full blood work test scheduled in January to see if the clot is gone and also to see if I still have any blood issues that could cause possible clots in the future. Right now all the swelling is gone and my arm seems to be back to normal. Just gets a little tired as I haven’t been using it a lot.

Will keep you updated. Thanks so much for all the positive comments and prayers! It really means a lot.

[ Update 2 – 6 – 2023 ]

The Ultrasound was done and the clot is still there but has gotten much smaller. Previously 4 of the veins in my arm were being affected but now only 2. Seems to be moving in the right direction but may take a few more months. I will get the full Doctor Report on February 10th.

[ Update 5 – 7 – 2023 ]

I am now off Blood Thinners and all my Blood Tests came back great so seems everything is almost back to normal. I do experience a bit of pain and tightness occasionally so just have to keep moving during the day and doing range of motion exercises. It’s great to be able to play again without discomfort after about 8 months. It seems all the body mapping and Alexander Technique lessons have really helped!

John W Tuggle
John W Tuggle

I love teaching the blues and have created numerous training courses and lessons to learn how to play like BB King, Clapton, Duane Allman, and more. Get Started Now

Articles: 171


  1. John, Best of luck to you and your speedy recovery. Your Blues Guitar lessons are some of the BEST out there. Take Care and hang in there.

    Chuck Faull

  2. Hey John, thanks for sharing. Hope you get back on track soon and wish you alle the best.

  3. Man that’s scary stuff. Happy to hear that it looks like you’ve got it under control. Looking forward to learning from you for years to come.

  4. God Bless you John. Scary feeling when faced with maybe not playing any more. Problems with my hands and trying to work through it as well. Great player and teacher. Look forward to another 15 years.
    John T

  5. Glad to hear you are doing better. Diet and exercise are the key to a long life. You never know what is going to happen from one day to the next. I hope you have many many years left of playing guitar and teaching lessons. GOD bless you.

  6. Hi John,
    I’m glad you felt you could share this – a lesson for us all.
    Maybe this is a positive if it has served as wakeup to get you moving around more and thus prevent something even more serious in the future. For the last few years I have been trying to avoid all short car journeys where I can realistically walk instead.
    All the best and I hope you can come back stronger than ever.

  7. Hello John
    I’m sorry for what happened I want to send you my best wishes. You have to go back to being as and better than before !!!

  8. Hey John glad to hear you have a positive attitude and hope you are on the mend 🤞 take care 🙏

  9. Wow! Congratulations on your recovery and proactive changes… Looking at The End as eminent certainly changes a man or woman, often for the better.
    Accentuate the positive!

  10. John
    We are thankful that you are a man of faith and went straight to that when you found out what was going on.
    Prayers for you here.

    Bob and Connie Hoefer

  11. John, I’ve followed you for probably the entire 15 years. The reason is simple — your product is very high quality, you are passionate about the music and we like the same players ( notably Duane Allman). But you are also a good guy. That makes a difference. So good luck. I’m 73 and still gigging. I also work in a trade and risk hand damage all the time. Maybe that’s why they still work for me — I get a physical work out in the process. At any rate it’s something I think about a lot. Can’t imagine not playing. Thanks for letting us know — and stay in motion. I think that’s the key.

  12. All the very best to you John and stay safe. My daughter had a DVT 20+ years ago (yes, I’m that old) and I would offer some advice based on her experience. Don’t let the doctors take you off blood thinners too hastily. It is possible to have another DVT so do please take that advice on board and discuss with your doctor. Peace and love.

  13. Thank you for sharing John, and I’m so glad you are on the mend! I’m going to look into Body Mapping myself!
    Take care, looking forward to your next lesson.

  14. Glad your going to be ok. Just had a health scare myself ,it’s amazing when you find out what’s really important.
    Keep playing those blues and thanks.

  15. All the best wishes for a great recovery, and may you have the time to do what you do at a less physically punishing pace. Maybe now the whole ‘less is more’ idea will make even more sense. Big love from Hastings, UK.

  16. I appreciate your situation June 21 of this year I had a heart attack and on the 23rd had a double bypass.
    Life is precious and our health is everything we have to take of our bodies, making the changes necessary to sustain our vitality.
    I enjoy your lessons, admire you as a player. I’ll be praying for you. You’ve built a great business helping countless people grow as guitar players and enjoy the instrument more.
    All the best
    Dan Keck

  17. Thanks for the update John.
    Here’s wishing all the best for a full recovery and the next fifteen years (at least) of blues guitar videos.
    Chris (Spectored)

  18. Thank you so much for sharing. I started playing guitar because I saw your website. I loved the Allman brothers growing up abd you absolutely changed my life.

    Please get well soon. I will add you to my prayers

    Grace and Blessings

  19. Wow thanks for sharing this to everyone. Really puts life in perspective for sure. Hoping for a speedy recovery for you.

  20. I’m sorry to hear of your trauma, but very glad you’ll pull through unscathed. I had not heard of DVT resulting from playing an instrument, but given extended periods sitting, it makes sense. Though I have never had a scary incident resulting from guitar playing, I did find my back beginning to hurt significantly when I practiced a lot. It became such a problem that eventually I shifted to practicing while standing and continue to do so to this day. Now you’ve given me one more reason to keep it up. Best wishes for a full recovery. Tom Walter

  21. Way to go John.! We’re happy you’re still around!
    Have always enjoyed your lessons and even bought one back in the day.
    I’m not going to assume anything here however chances are that you have made a pretty good living
    with your lessons which means you don’t have to stress so much or try to over achieve. You’ve earned the right
    to relax a bit from the many years of constant endeavor.
    Do it for us if not for yourself.
    Get well soon.

  22. John,

    Have always gained solid guidance from your lessons and appreciate the gift you share with others. Wishing you a speedy recovery and confident you will have more to share with others based on this experience. Take it easy and prayers being sent your way.

    All the best,

    Bruce Thompson

  23. Feel better John and take care of yourself. Looking forward to all the new lessons and while I’m about it any new standard tuning slide videos would be much appreciated. Your stuff is great!
    Joe Bodek

  24. Best wishes
    One of the best lessons and instruction ive seen.
    Take it easy on yourself

  25. Thanks for the fuller story, John. A wake up call, indeed!! And it’s great that you seem on the mend. A toast to your last 15 years with your site and to the next 15 years…and beyond.

  26. Thanks for sharing that John, I believe sometimes we put God in the back seat until we need Him. I`m 74 years old and seen a lot of things in my life and have learned through the years that we should put God first always and then everything else will take care of itself. God bless you and keep you well.

  27. John, i’m glad to hear that you are recovering well. I didn’t even know anything was going on with you or i would have been praying on target for your needs. Do what you need to do to take care of yourself man and the Lord will do His part. Thanks for all your hard work and dedication throughout the years instructing guitar lessons, you are an artisan at your craft and you are much appreciated.

  28. Hey John, Glad to hear your doing better. Life is full of suprises and some are a bit scary to say the least. Of all the things that we think are so important to us I’ve come to realize our health is the highest priority. Dust off your breeches, get back in saddle and hang on tight cause you never know when life will try to buck you off.
    Kind regards,
    Joe M. Martin

  29. Wow man.

    So glad to hear you are on the mend.
    Take your time !

    Fare Thee Well , Mike Walsh

    P.S. you are a fantastic teacher. 😃

  30. John,

    Medical issues that “just pop up” are always scary and no one wants to visit the ER – thank God you did. Glad to hear you’re on the mend. Keep that up. Old age never comes alone!

  31. You will do well, just give it some time and re-education of body mobility. I had a similar out of nowhere event and it scared the shit out of me too. Good luck, and be well John.


  32. So glad you went to the ER.
    Thank you for your inspiration and the way you enrich our lives with the joy of playing!
    Peace, God bless, and take care.
    ~Lou Quetel

  33. John. Keeping you in my prayers. Much appreciate your lessons and have benefited greatly by them. Thank you also for the heads up on your health. You are not alone in this world made by HE whose hand is upon us.
    Another trusting Brother.

  34. Hey John, sorry to hear about your health challenges.
    My experience at LGN was top-notch, and you are not only an excellent player and teacher, you are a real gentleman.
    And business-wise, you were always in tune to your customers’ needs and concerns.
    I had to cancel my LGN subscription for health reasons too; the cancer just got ahead of me, and I haven’t played much now for about two years.
    But I am still hopeful of getting back in the game, and of all the kinds of music I love to play, I’ve decided to go all-in on electric blues, and there’s no better guitar site for that than LGN. (There’s so much emotional expression and release in playing blues. I just feel it in my bones and blood and heart and soul. For myself, I hope and pray to get another year and play my heart out on my little Tele – and your lessons will be my study plan.)
    So best wishes for a full and fast recovery, John.
    Roger Fisher
    London Canada

  35. Hi John. Very sorry to hear of your difficulties but glad that you are now on the mend. You are a great teacher and inspiration. I hope you make a speedy recovery and look forward to hearing you play again. Best wishes Greg.

  36. You are loved and not alone. May you have a speedy recovery. Your guitar lessons have helped so many people including myself. Can’t wait to see what’s yet to come. God bless you!

  37. John, first of all thank god you took action when you did. Your health is everything. It sounds like you have got a good plan of action moving forward. I have learned at this senior point in my life that simple walking is one of the most important forms of exercise. Be sure to make time for your health. I’ll bet like many I have been looking forward to the next lesson for the past month. Now we understand what has been going on in your life. We will do just fine until that time comes. There are a lot of lessons we can review and learn from. I’m sure I speak for a lot of your subscribers when I say I’m not going anywhere. Best of health to you and I will look forward to your next lesson when the time is right for you. Your the best!

  38. I’m happy that you are on a new health path that will keep you playing and producing videos for us! Keep up the good work on both your health and music efforts.

    Note: Thanks in large part to the Slide in E lessons I bought from you, I am proud to say I can play the Holy Grail – Dwayne’s Statesboro Blues – spot on which I’ve recorded with a backing track I found online. Thank you!

  39. what you just wrote all of us will help many people more than a lifetime of guitar lessons it was slways obvious to me that God was in your life your countanance shines through maybe he used your temperary affliction to help thousands see your faith? well done good and faithful servant meanwhile ill continue to let you piss me off with your skill level i will never attain! after 55 years of playing

  40. Thank the Lord you went into the Hospital! Take your time to full recovery. I expect we all deal with different issues but we are glad your on the road to recovery!
    Looking forward to what comes next.


  41. Hi John,

    So glad you got treatment and are on the mend. Not sitting too much is a challenge for students of the guitar!
    The watch to remind you is a great idea. I am going to look into getting one.
    Best wishes for your recovery,

  42. John, wishing you all the best. I’m 70, recently retired. It’s turning to winter in Utah. My plan was to sit and play my guitar most of the day. I guess I’ll need to also plan on moving and stretching several times a day also. Thanks for the update and, again, get well soon.

  43. I’m glad you’re better. I’ve had some health issues due to sitting too much and overuse (playing guitar for too long without breaks). My body pushed back, so I had to learn how to take better care of myself. Hopefully, you’ll wind up in better shape than before. God bless you. Bart C.

  44. Hi John,
    wish you all the best and a speedy recovery. I still have so much to learn and you are truly a good teacher. Think positive forward


  45. John, As a fellow ex-Mobilian, I can appreciate your desire to keep the good going. Take better care of yourself as no one else is going to do it for you. I have been in New England for 40 years now and have never looked back.


  46. Glad to hear that things are improving for you ! I love the lessons ! Thanks and stay well ! Stan

  47. Damn that’s close John. Too close. Feel better. Rock on. I’d say blues on but yes corny. My preferred lessons.

  48. I’m so glad you made it and are healing and absorbing the life changes these events can offer us.
    I am a heart attack survivor. I got close enough to the light and tunnel to see my dear friend who had passed away 6 weeks prior. Fortunately she told “not yet Adels”. And so I made it back from a near death experience.
    I don’t have heart disease. This heart attack was caused by a prescribed medication.
    But I too look and live life differently now. I was always very healthy and lived an active life style but, I value every moment of life differently now.
    Sure I’m left with a fear but I’m also left with a big appreciation of each day and a deeper soul playing of the blues.
    Again glad your ok, thank you for your honest sharing and I’m so glad you are continuing to heal and integrating the changes into your gift of life.

  49. Keep up the good work John. We all have a purpose in this world. Unfortunately we’re getting older and changes happen to all. We sometimes start experiencing different pains in the body or loosing someone special in your life. But we all have to move on one way or another. We have to say we’re not the only ones that are going thru hard times there is people out there that are going thru harder times then us. It’s hard but keep moving on. Take care glad your doing better.

  50. Hi John. Hope you recover fully and continue to bring us lessons, especially for old beginners like me (I am 70, jazz drummer) and trying to learn the blues. I live in Brazil and the dollar here is very expensive, but hopely in about 3 to 4 months I will be able to subscribe to your site. I am been thru a major heart surgery but recovered pretty good and now I can hold my guitar and study (and play my drums). All the best for your. Cheers from Brazil. The communists won the election here and I am pretty scared, but one day at a time! CB

  51. John,
    Thanks for sharing your story with us. We are praying that you experience a full recovery and enjoy a long prosperous life.
    Along with a doctor’s care, faith in God can expedite recovery from medical problems.
    The following Bible scriptures build our faith in God’s ability to heal us:
    Isaiah 33:24 – And no resident will say: “I am sick. The people dwelling in the land will be pardoned for their errors.
    Matthew 4:23 – Then he (Jesus) went throughout the land of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the good news of the Kingdom and curing every sort of disease and infirmity among the people.
    Luke 8:43- 56 – A woman who had a blood flow for 12 years touched the hem of Jesus’ garment, and her blood flow stopped. Jesus said to her: “Daughter, your faith has made you well.”
    These and many other Bible scriptures can provide much comfort and encouragement on your road to recovery.
    Thanks for the great guitar lessons you have provided!

  52. God was definitely with you my friend and he is not done with you. Carry-on and may God bless you.

  53. Glad to hear that you are ok now John! May God bless you with his grace and grant you patience and keep you always healthy.Take care and have a speedy recovery!

  54. Hey John. So glad to hear that everything is working out for you. Love your lessons and teaching techniques. Take care.

    • Hello John
      Glad to hear you are on the road to full recovery, take your time and look to you. Thank you so much for your inspiring lessons! And keep the blues for us…

  55. Hey John,
    Probably the biggest lesson you’ll ever teach ! Thankyou for sharing.
    All the best mate, I know you’ll have a speedy recovery and look forward to many more years of lessons. 👍

  56. Great to hear the recovery is heading in the right direction. All the very best moving forward mate. 👍

  57. Take care of yourself John and get well soon. Although I am no longer a member due to financial reasons, I have always enjoyed your tutorials. Robert Monzi.

  58. Glad it’s all over and pray you get back to normal, take care and God Bless you always ❤ 🙏

  59. He works in mysterious ways. At the end of 2020, I started having these spells where I just felt like I needed to fall asleep, for no real reason, anytime during the day. I was so tired I felt something was really wrong so I would go to the ER. By the time I arrived, I was feeling better, but they would run tests and everything looked okay. I kept happening, but more frequently and it was lasting longer. In June of 2021, I was really bad, so my wife took me to the ER. It was the same stroy, but on ER doctor noticed a dip in my heart rate just for a split second or two. I wore a halter for a couple of weeks. I took it in that morning so they could gather the info. They called me and told me to go to the ER immediately. I was in need of a heart pacemaker ASAP. I was on blood thinners, so I had to wait for 36 hours before they could operate. That was July 2021 and I’ve been feeling great. He is with us, always!! Stay well and be safe!!!

  60. God speed your recovery John, and please get moving more. I’m going to take your experience as a sign that I have to get out and walk more, too.

  61. Glad your doing better hope you continue feeling better as well . We all need you so take good care of yourself buddy thanks for everything you do!!

  62. Hi John,
    I’m sorry to hear about what happened to you. I certainly don’t know all the details of your DVT but unprovoked blood clots are rare in the arm. I would ask your doctor (or a hematolologist) to pursue an evaluation for a genetic hypercoaguable cause (such as factor V Leiden, etc). There about 10 genetic conditions that can be screened for that increase the risk of blood clots. This might change the duration of anticoagulation therapy. Also, malignancies (cancers) cause hypercoaguable states and based on your age and risk factora you should make certain to be up to speed on cancer screening (colonoscopy, PSA, thorough skin exam). I’m a physician assistant that enjoys playing guitar. I like your site and your playing style.
    Kevin Hines

  63. Hello John.
    Sorry to hear about your troubles. I had a small stroke a few years ago which with medication has completely gone away.
    Hope your medications do the same for you and I look forward to your emails in the future.
    Take care!!!

  64. Hi John,
    Your condition seems to be affecting a lot of people all over the world – much more prevalent than ever before it would seem and it would be pertinent to start doing a bit of independent research in order to understand the nature of what’s happening and what you can do to mitigate. It may have come out of the blue, but their may have been an external factor common to people internationally.
    I’m not a doctor but have found this supplement to be prevalent in discussions by medical professions over the last year or two. N-acetylcysteine (NAC) is a supplement which is readily available and I suggest searching it on Youtube and wherever you can. I’ve been following international discussion on this over the last year or more on Youtube and has been widely recommended.
    I wish you well John and hope you will do your research and find out quickly what caused this clotting.
    Love your lessons, even though they are challenging for a guitar player of two years. I’ve learnt a lot from you, so thank you, I’m very grateful to you.

  65. I’ve just begun your free lessons and I am really getting into them.
    I hope you get well soon. Good luck!!

  66. As a survivor of cancer and a recent serious scare your health is a real worry and you must take it very seriously I hope it works out well for you Keep up the good work your lessons are Top Class all the best Charlie Adelaide AUstralia

  67. Hey John,

    Glad your on the mend.

    On a lighter note! perhaps you could do a two in one video as in an excersie & guitar course in one :)

    Johnny Pedersen.

  69. Sorry to hear all this. It sounds like you’ve made great strides in your recovery. Take it slow for a bit. Looking forward to more of the very best lessons on the web.


  70. That is frightening, take every day as a blessing and enjoy life as much as possible. God Bless

  71. John, I’m very happy for you and your family that you are OK. LGN has taught me great guitar licks and styles, and consequently, have brought a lot of good feelings (for me as a player and to friends and family who get to hear the fruits of my labor). Stay safe and my best wishes for a speedy full recovery. — Aric (@thebliueslawyer), San Antonio.

  72. John:

    First and foremost, praise be to God that you’re healing and that things didn’t become worse in your medical outcome. You’re blessed and your work on this earth is far from over. And you pay tribute to God! As you move forward, it sounds like you’re getting advice from the best sources, and I forwarded your piece here to my brother-in-law, who is a professional guitarist, in the hope that your personal experience will help him (he suffers from my maladies from his years of playing).

    Your influence on my playing and learning curve is profound and can’t be overstated. I surmise that there are so many out there, folks you’ve never met or even corresponded with, who’ve grown immeasurably from your wisdom, time and outstanding lessons.

    I consider you a brother on the path, a wise teacher and friend I haven’t yet met. My prayers and thoughts are with you my man. Heal. Be well,

    Steve Archambault

  73. WOW JOHN,

  74. Hey, John. I’ve enjoyed your videos and have learned a lot from you. I hope you make a full recovery and feel better than ever. I had an event 13 years ago that changed my life for the better. Took a heart attack and four stents in to make the difference. Eating better and brisk walks can extend your life and be rather enlightening at the same time.
    We get lots of signs in life. Tricky part is recognizing them.
    Take care,


  75. John,
    I am glad that you are getting better after that scare. I want to wish you a prompt full recovery and keep exercising for healthy future. Thank you ,

  76. Hi John
    Thank God that you are alright. We all at some stage receive a wake up call to our fragile mortality. In the book of Genesis the Lord said to Adam, If you eat the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil , you will surely die. That fruit was the desire of procreation and man fell from eternal life to mortal life.
    I believe that you are a Christian belonging to some denomination, I don’t belong to any denomination, creed, dogmas and man-made doctrines. I stay fixed on THE WORD.
    Having heard of your experience , I am going to offer a prayer for your health, healing and recovery. I also suggest that you get yourself a NASB Study Bible and spend time with the Holy WORD of God. We have a great future, a sure place , an eternal redemption in Jesus Christ. That is the greatest Joy I have and so I like to share that with you. “We dont live on bread alone but every WORD that proceedeth from the Mouth of God. Amen”

  77. Jhon, dese Argentina… Recuperación y a cuidarse!… Blues sin salud no es Blues… Gracias por las lecciones.

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