Saturday, August 6, 2016
I Could Be Dead: Slowness of the Medical Industry
Maybe that is the plan.
"The Patient died, doc."
"Okay, problem solved. Make out a bill to the estate."
I have been going to the doctor regularly, more their idea than mine. They say these try-annually thumping and tappings are to keep me healthy. So what went wrong? I kept following the doctor, or nurse-practitioner because that is whoo you get more times or not, instructions and advice. They are supposed to keep me ticking.
I don't smoke. I don't drink. I don't snort, ingest or smoke anything I shouldn't. They told me to cut down on sugar and boost the fruit in my diet, and I did. Exercise, of yeah, I went out and moved these bones. I worked out at a gym three times a week. I spent time on a rowing machine at home. I shed any excess weight I was carrying, reducing down to 165 pounds, which looked thin on my six foot frame. And I kept that weigh at bay by walking. Bright and early every morn I was up and out into the parks walking five or miles.
It was on one of these jaunts the weirdness hit me, like an evil wood sprite struck me with a magic spell. I was walking along at my usual clip. Now at 75 I admit I've slowed down a smidgeon. I was averaging a mile every 18 minutes now. Still I was generally passing other walkers, except the youthful athletic type. I didn't huff and puff up hill or down and sometimes I went further than the 5 miles, occasionally stretching it to 8 or 9 miles. I preferred to do this on the rougher trails, especial;y in the Brandywine Creek State Park or the First State Monument National Park (Boy, that's a mouthful!)
I was at Rockwood. It was the first quantum of my jaunt and I was walking downhill around the big meadow fronting the estate. Everything was as it always was until...pow...my whole world changed, like someone threw a switch. My legs felt odd, like they didn't want to make the bends necessary for walking. They felt like overstretch rubber band, worn out and tired. They were instantly weak and the further I walked the weaker they got.
Now I'm not big on doctors, but when I know my body is misbehaving, I go see one. I didn't know what this was, but I didn't like it. On top of this walking thing, I also had developed a stuffed up head, with the annoyance of a constantly running nose and a hacking cough.
Now my legs betrayed me sometime in the last week of May. I was just to my primary physician for an exam on May 24 and everything was great at that exam. I had two doctor appointments scheduled in June. I waited to see what they might have to say, but they gave me passing grades as well. In late June I called my Primary and made another appointment. He could see me on the 6th of July.
I saw him and he told me to get tests. I was to get two MRIs and make an appointment with a Neurologist, and then several tests at a Cardiologists.
I got the MRIs on July 7, the day after seeing my Primary' however, the soonest the Neurologist can
The Cardiologist couldn't do the first test until July 28. The next test is August 11 and then August 16. This are fairly short tests, ultrasound, so I asked why they couldn't all be done during one visit. They can't because Medicare says they can't. Is this how we cut medical costs, forcing three visits where one would do?
Nonetheless, I know no more than I knew the day this strangeness hit me. It'll be over three months before anyone will tell me anything. Meanwhile this affliction has affected everything in my life. It isn't just that I can't walk very far, but my hands aren't working right either and I have lost much of what little strength I had in my arms for lifting anything. I can't keep my balance and I walk into walls. My brain has been scrambled somehow. I can't get any organized and I have trouble focusing and concentrating. Write this Blog post took a great effort.
I don't get the delays. My grandson was just in for an MRI. He is 2. They have said it might be water n the brain or he may be autistic. His parents have had him for testing, but haven;t heard a peep from the medical staffs on results. Is this fair? Do these people have any idea how worrisome such things are to parents? It isn't right to not say something.
But the medical world appears to be stuck in glue any more.