Monday, October 24, 2011

No "Rheum" For Me

Onto the Rheumie! His first response, after I go through my symptoms is, "I think this is neurological." So, instead of sending me to a Neurologist, he orders an EMG, which is a neurological test. I am happy with this. My second mistake. During the long waiting period for this EMG (more on that later) he puts me on Neurontin, Tramadol, and Flexeril for pain and muscle spasms, which I had begun experiencing regularly. Oh, and, my third mistake, I cancelled the Neurologist appointment because I assumed a Rheumatologist knew what he was doing ordering neurological tests.

Oh, he felt around at the pressure points that would indicate Fibromyalgia, and yes, they were tender. My whole body feels the way they do. But he looked me in the eye and told me that I didn't have Fibro. 

The EMG, done by a new doc–a Neurologist–was painful, to say the least. I thought I was tough. But when electrified needles are poked into your muscle tissue that is already very sore and extremely sensitive, things happen. One needle hit right onto a nerve in my right quad. All the pain I had felt over the last several months was amplified and packed into one moment. Things happened. Involuntary tears. Sobbing. Bleeding at the site. Gasps for breath between sobs. Wow. I've had six surgeries–three of which were C-sections. Nothing was as painful as this. I've even had a fingernail ripped out. Well, maybe that was worse because that pain lasted longer. But that's the only reason I would categorize that as worse than that one needle.

Waiting... waiting...

RESULTS! Rheumie comes in, and reports the findings: "you're normal. Let's play around with medicine dosages. Then come back and see me in four weeks." Oh, that's gonna fix my problem. Add more milligrams of pain meds. I will be cured. But I say okay. My fourth mistake. One nice thing here was that he believed me about my pain and issued a 6-month temporary disabled tag for my car. Six weeks go by... Finally in to see the Rheumie.

Dr. Rheumie waltzes in, acting as if he didn't know me. At all. He asks, "what are your primary concerns/issues?" I think to myself, "REALLY?!?!?!" So I remind him. He asks, "You're seeing Dr. So-and-so also, right?" Wow. "Dr. Who? No. I'm not seeing this So-and-so."

"Oh, sorry. I don't have your file." Mental GASP! Mental I'm falling onto the floor in astonishment. "Well, I think this is neurological, so I'm going to send you to a Neurologist." Mental jaw drop and seizure!!!

My fifth mistake... I never once questioned him. I never said, "You told me this at our first appointment, and could have saved me the time, pain, and money by sending me right away! I want a refund!!!!!"

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