Thursday, June 4, 2009

Is the Doctor In?

I must explain a few things as a background to this long post about doctors and me. First I don’t like going, have a fear that goes back to my childhood. Second, I had not been to one for over 25 years since I had no insurance. Third, I turned 65 and got on Medicare two years ago. That is when my tale of “Doctor Who?” began.

I don’t know how it is in other parts of the country, but in SW Missouri Doctors limit the number of new Medicare patients they see. In addition, the ones affiliated with my preferred hospital take even fewer. After calling medical offices for a couple of weeks, I gave in and went to a “Doc in a Box” clinic. Then I asked for a referral to a Rheumatologist and a GP. That worked, I got an appointment with Dr. J

Dr. J took one look at my hands, asked a few questions, and sent me to X-ray and the lab. He is super nice, trained at Walter Reed, an all business type. I liked him. Besides that, everything is connected on computers, so he had instant results. He went over the X-rays from my toes to the top of my head. Mercy, I am scrambled mess of things crooked and not in the right place. He also ordered some custom fitted hands braces. (another long story) One of the first meds was Sulfasalazine, which gave me a rash. Next he tried Methotrexate which almost killed me. (long story #2)

One day in the middle of my med ordeal, I received a letter informing me that Dr. J had left Coxhealth and moved to another town. OK, that happens. After awhile I called and got an appointment with Dr. T, but had to wait 6 weeks for an opening. My favorite nurse told me the two doctors did things differently, boy did they. Dr. T prescribed prednisone, which I thought was a miracle drug. Dr. T thought I should be on one of the newer, more expensive drugs that I refused.

Everything of fine for about 5 months when I receive another letter to tell me Dr. T had joined Dr. J in a new practice. So now, I am without a Rheumatologist. This past January I went to a pain clinic and am with Dr. B, whom I adore. By the way, he changed me to hydrocortisone, which I like better.

There are several other long stories coming, including one about my GP retiring. I am calling this my coping blog, a simple place to express myself.

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