Doctors

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Today’s Lunch – 19th September 2018

Published September 19, 2018 by helentastic67

Todays Lunch

Today’s Lunch

Good Mental Health Day

Another busy week, a whole lotta crazy! What’s new, right? Monday, I did 5,000 steps. Yeah, I’m a step-counter, at 45 and steps are still important. Oh and today is International talk like a pirate day! Ah, yah! Yes, me hearties.

Pirate talk

Very happily was down at my regular cafe yesterday and got to have one of my favourites, the almond croissant and medicine!

Almond Crossaint

Got to see my GP, who gave me a print out of my latest blood tests. He confirmed my liver is ok (I wasn’t thinking I had pickled it I was previously told I had a fatty liver!) that can’t be good right? But now it’s all good! I’m happy to even donate my liver!

Liver

One of my friends mentioned to me this week when you are sliding into the Pause, your weight fluctuates. I smartly asked, “when does it go down?”

Menopause

I confess I got lazy today and had a kip before leaving home to do “person”. I stayed local closer to home. And my two appointments. Getting stabbed and tortured by my beautician.

Doing person

Today’s offering, a Mediterranean focaccia. (Mina cut it up for me, she’s so sweet!) Medicine and this little pecan tart.

Med FoccaciaLatte

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And lastly, I think I should mention Mika my companion cat might be getting a name change to include Houdini, maybe a middle name? We will build on it.

Mika 2

Last Friday, I let my carer out via the car park and returned upstairs, when I went back inside and locked the door Mika made her escape and I didn’t realise for several more hours! Eventually having looked everywhere inside including inside the pantry and the European laundry I checked out in the hallway. Saw my neighbour and as I’ve only met her once or twice she offered to come in and help me find her. She is a nurse who works night-shift. Hence why I never see her.  Now you know I asked if she had eaten? I make my Nona proud every time!

Nona

As I had sent out my texts to my other neighbours to collect muffins there was a knock at my door and Will stood there and suggested they had something in their apartment that might belong to me? I’m sorry, I blurted out “Do you have my fucking cat?” His partner wanted to keep Mika and Mika wasn’t much interested in me or returning home. She had to be caught and carried and not by me.  Now don’t hate me, however, my new fur-child is not food-orientated. So, when I had been banging around in my kitchen she had not surfaced and she had not noticed me putting out her food.

Mika 1
Mika has not had a collar but she’s getting one this week and it’s going to look like a charm bracelet, with those things. So, she if found roaming the halls, please return to, “xyz!”

Cat bling

I’m also imagining her out in the hallway thinking all the doors look exactly the same! Feeling like a bad fur-parent!

Bad Fur parent

Cheers,
H

Hump Day

Torture – Part 2

Published August 10, 2018 by helentastic67

Torture Pt2

Torture – Part 2

So now, to how doctors buy themselves time and the active torture that was to temporarily fix the problem. They promised me an Epidural.

Doctor buying time

Have you ever wondered why “women in labour” ask for the Epidural? I don’t know from personal experience, but I’m told it hurts. It hurts like pushing a big square wardrobe out of a small place in you body, wardrobes don’t belong…

Women in labour

And the Epidural doesn’t hurt because of the happy pregnant lady hormones.

Now, they promised me an Epidural as part of delivering me a nerve root injection or a Cortisone shot. (you will hear people call it)

Cortisone shot

At the time I was on two waiting lists, one with my hospital (because I thought they would get to me) and another hospital closer to home. (that is, I didn’t have them do my surgery, my own mother might have killed me. Because she had been told they had the best surgeon to see.)

Waiting list

Have I mentioned, I’m a public patient? Because I’m poor. Yeah. So it generally means, you go with whatever you can get, whenever you can have it and not before.

The term for it is triage, they prioritise the patience that are less mobile and more ‘at risk’. Just making a point – ALL YEAR, it took all year!

Still, I digress.

The Nuero root injection goes like this, in nothing but your knickers pushed down low on your hips and a gown that is open at the back, you lie down on your tummy on a CT scanning bed. There are two people in the room whom you will hate by the end of the procedure. (if you follow my advice and learn from my experience.)

Lying on CT Scanner

Firstly, they give you a local anaesthetic. Now I will remind you, it’s been a while since my last local, so you forget how much it stings.

Sweet Jesus! (Which is likely what I said)

Sweet Jesus

The doctors claim it’s because the needle is so fine. Really? Torture device.

Then they wait until it starts to kick-in and then I swear it’s like a pick-axe! They insert it in my lower back, telling me to breathe and relax.

Pick axe

When in pain, it’s good to keep breathing, but when lying on your tummy and working where they were, it’s impossible.

Keep Breathing

Then, they roll you into the CT machine and take a scan. The doctor comes back in and utters some words like “Looks like we’re heading in the right direction” and they ram the needle in further.

Heading in the right direction

I don’t think a “Sweet Jesus” was what came out the second time. They offered me more local, but does anyone need reminding, a local really does mean ‘local’.

Not sweet Jesus

Then another scan and more core breaking agony. Three times they took to get that needle all the way to where they wanted it. Then they injected me with the Cortisone, or whatever, that was meant to give me blessed relief from the pain.

Another CT Scan

I did feel something shoot down my right leg, but that was it.

I recall getting up after it an asking “What’s next?”

They told me that was it and I could go. OK

My sister had told me, if I was getting an epidural to ask at the end of the procedure “Where’s my baby?”

Wheres my baby

The Jewish doctor and his registrar just looked at me. The female nurse, over to one side gave me a little smile.

Tough crowd.

Anyway, I left the hospital with my mum and was still in pain, but now with a very sore back.

The second one I had at a different hospital, they made me stay lying down for an hour or so afterwards, in a small recovery room with nurses overlooking about six beds. They were very insistent I not get up and walk straight away in case my legs gave way and I fell over. Is that the sure sign it worked? Maybe not, not sure. But I really needed to pee.

Recovery

I was offered a bedpan, seriously, the push bedpans in hospital, like it’s more convenient for them to change the sheets than wheel me to a toilet and wheel me back to bed.

Bedpan

Grudgingly the nurse bought over a walker (you know, not just for old people, but predominantly) and I told her no. She kept insisting and I thought she was very slow for not realising you needed two hands to work one. I growled further to get it out of my way. I’m sure she thought I was the rudest cow in there that day. (I probably was)

Eventually, a wheelchair was produced and I was wheeled to the toilet. The chair pushed so close to the toilet and locked into place, I struggled to wriggle up and around it to wash my hand after I had gone.

Wheelchair

I pressed the duty call button and waited for some time for the nurse to return to me. My mum was patiently waiting my return. My mum was patiently waiting for my return, I briefly contemplated getting up and walking back using the hand rail on the hallway wall as an aide, but I waited.

Call button

I swear I waited twenty minutes, you get I only needed to pee.

The nurse finally retrieved me, stating she only realised I was not in my bed when she did a head-count and realised there was one bed empty. Oh, the call button doesn’t work? Nor did the nerve root injection.

Head Count

But, humoursly, the night light was comment from the nurse that had been in assisting my injection. She must have been new to that area.

An older more experienced nurse enquired as to during all the CT scans if she had protected herself from the radiation.

Radiation

She replied “OH yes! I hid behind the Doctors.”

Oh facepalm.

What about me? I’d suffered four or five, that day, I was informed the staff get fifty or more in a day.

I guess getting a needle rammed into your back with only a local, really doesn’t make for a happy Hellonwheels.

Sad Helen

The Fall

Published October 30, 2016 by helentastic67

the-fall-1

The Fall

Several years after developing my disability, I had a fall on the front veranda of my home. Unless, you’re a stunt man or woman there is never a ‘good’ fall. When you have a disability, there are only ‘bad’ falls. Falls in general, is one of those things that Doctors, will ask about to gauge your ability to be mobile and therefore independent. Those kinds of powers and abilities is in simple terms about getting to the toilet and moving around inside your home, not just about if you can leave your home and go to appointments and do things.

So, this particular fall I caught my left foot on a metal bar that protrudes from the fence at the front of the Terrace House I lived in at the time. The post was designed to stabilize the fence.

And this is when I fell, I managed to land hitting the left front of my head and my left shoulder. To say it was unexpected is an understatement. And that brick wall was hard. LUCKILY, there was no blood or piss for that matter however, I cannot tell you how much it hurt!

 

I actually whimpered. My mum was staying at the time and was 3 rooms away. By the time I got up using the fence for support mum was there. Of course, she scolded me with that usual ‘What the hell did you do?’

Yeah, but she was genuinely concerned. Of course, never mistake it!

As I had gotten up I had looked out across the street to see if anyone had witnessed my spill.

At the time, I lived opposite some low-level Public Housing.

A guy who lived on the ground floor who, saw me fall and I knew and waved ‘Hello’ to as he was always on his front balcony smoking and generally keeping an eye on the neighbourhood. He had gotten up with a concerned look on his face.

When he saw my mum, I gave him a wave to let him know I was OK.

Again, don’t ask me to define OK.

FYI, if you think that neighbourhood watch dog was a nice guy, think again! He broke his cats neck because (his neighbour told me) he thought the cat was listening to his conversations.

He did have Schizophrenia. But there is no excuse for killing an animal. And people wonder why I try so hard to stay out of Public Housing.

What remains of any good mental headspace would quickly vanish surrounded by that.

Anyway, back to the fall. Really don’t know what it did to my noggin. We queried my Doctor at the time if my brain had received any damage, however an MRI taken at the time were only aimed at the AVM site. (The opposite side of my head)

bandaged-head

My left shoulder on the other hand remains a problem to this day. In so many ways including a constant and repetitive disagreement with my Mother. Did I dislocate my left shoulder, or didn’t I?

Had I hit my right shoulder, it would have become dislocated! Without doubt!

Because my left arm doesn’t work, my shoulder has reduced muscle tone. When I hit, the brick wall my muscles in my shoulder just stretched like an old rubber band and the bones just moved.

After some time, I did go to an emergency room and get it x-rayed.

Officially, it’s dislocated but NOT!

drs-office

I did pay ‘out-of-pocket’ to see a private shoulder specialist. Partly to see how bad it really was and part to alleviate my mum’s stress. Yes, that’s what you do in these circumstances.

I distinctly remember meeting the specialist. Because he mostly saw sporting injuries and his opening question to me was ‘Now, what’s wrong with you?’

“How long have you got?” is how I responded. I of course gave him the brief rundown of my medical situation and disability.

He told me he could fuse my shoulder together which would guarantee it would never work again, but would put the arm bone (note – very simple terms) back into the shoulder socket but he told me it would lead to secondary issues across my upper back.

Still, many years later, I wear my arm in a collar and cuff when out of the house so I’m not carrying around dead weight and putting more stress on my shoulder.

slings

If I sleep on that side, my shoulder clicks when I sit up in the morning. Sexy right?

Not to mention the pins and needles I get in my good hand.

This is a new/old thing I’m currently looking into. One thing worse than being one-handed, would be having 2 arms and legs and not being able to use either arms or legs.

Not wanting to give ‘power-to-words’ Let’s move on!

 

 

Botox

Published September 23, 2016 by helentastic67

botoks_allergan_ilac

Botox

I’ve had Botox! Four times for free! Ask me how!

Okay, this is how I like to break the news to people because the only thing people have heard of Botox being used for, is to pump in the lines on their faces to get rid of the wrinkles.

But people get it for other things.

They might get it injected into their scalp, armpits or even a woman’s bladder. http://www.webmd.com/urinary-incontinence-oab/news/20150515/botox-overactive-bladder

sweat-glands

The bladder, I’ve not heard much about, but the first two I hear it helps with perspiration problems.

Keep in mind, in no way, shape or form am I doing a sales pitch for Botox (botulinum Toxin)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Botulinum_toxin

Hear me when I say this; it is the MOST TOXIC THING YOU CAN PUT IN YOUR BODY.

But anyway, I haven’t been lucky enough to want/need it for vanities sake!

I’ve had it out of necessities sake.

Twice in my arm and twice in my calf for what’s called Spasticity!

bent-wrist

People who suffer ‘stroke’ or ‘stroke like symptoms’ like myself will have an arm that won’t relax and straighten. In extreme cases, some people will have a hand that will not open.

Imagine what happens if you can’t wash or dry your hand. It can lead to other problems, like a stroke is not enough. Broken skin conditions don’t help.

They are very careful with where and how to inject exactly the right muscle for the best effect…

In the correct muscle in the arm, it relaxes other muscles lower down in the arm and ideally the hand. It’s ideal to have a good STRETCH OF THE hand to be able to work on the hand.

It’s every important to do a lot of OT at this time to maximise the benefits of the Botox.

Because after 3-4 months the Botox wears off and hopefully when the muscles that were ‘relaxed’ by the Botox wake-up there is a better balance between those muscles and the ones exercise have been working on.

You generally don’t have Botox all the time because you can build up an immunity to it.

I always like to use the example that one day all those faces in Hollywood will simultaneously drop. Sad face?

I might do a You tube demo to show what Botox in the calf is for…………………………….

injection-sites

injection-calf-muscle

 

2.10am

Published September 2, 2016 by helentastic67

 

 

night writing2.10am!

Let’s do a little experiment! Let’s see if I can successfully substitute the F Bomb! (Helen’s favourite word!) With a substitute. Also starts with ‘F’!

Keep in mind my GP will gauge how I am mentally by now many times I drop the Fudge word! When I’m frustrated I use the Fudge word a lot and when I see my GP I debrief him on all the things incompetent people aren’t doing. We kind of case manage my care together which works well.

GP

People with an ABI need a lot of sleep. I can’t recall when I last had a night of 8 hours undisturbed! Seriously, maybe never!

I go to bed late (or early) I think you can tell. Tonight I managed not to have my pre-dinner kip. It’s a miracle! And surprising considering the start to my day.

Went to sleep at 2 am.

Stupid neighbours think it’s OK to run their washer/dryer all night long disturbing my sleep!

So already on bad start!

Fudging asshat! Parks his Bogan car outside my bedroom window. Insists on warming his motor like it’s the 70’s and his car is vintage – it’s not! At 6.30am – Fudge!!!

Asshat! Goes back inside and comes back 5 minutes later.

Can’t believe I’ve put up with this 3 and a bit years!

Get back to sleep!

Instagram-c5c344

8.30am – there is a chainsaw!

What the Fudge???

But wait! Then a wood chipper!

FUDGE!!!

30 minutes and it’s done.

Bet back to sleep after hitting the MEPACS ALARM!
(Diverting a 9.30 wake up)

Had put on my washing machine so again, disturbed sleep.

10.45am – my carer arrives early!

FUDGE!!!

Discussed today with my GP the lack of follow-up by a hospital Orthotists to get funding application for a 2nd pair of shoes.

shoes for afo 1

For say. If these ones get wet, get sweaty or die because they are my only shoes to wear with my AFO (Ankle Foot Orthotic)

“FUDGE ME!” I tell my GP when he asks how hard it is for the Orthotists to do it?

He smiles and I try to look a little repentant.

We already have a backup plan.

I have an appointment with a private Orthotists I’ve seen previously. He won’t have a problem doing the forms to get me the funding for both an AFO and a pair of shoes.

ankle+foot+orthotic+modification

It’s just going to take some time!

And I guess the NDIS kicks in on the 1st of July!

FUDGE!!!

Time for bed.

My first wake-up call is at 6.30am after all!

Strangely, my brain is all systems ‘GO’!

F off trying to sleep

 

 

Christmas!!!

Published March 14, 2016 by helentastic67

Christmas lights 1

Christmas!!!

So our Christmas lights have several settings. My sister the lighting tech support recently described one of the settings as the Epileptic Fit Setting.

I’m really lucky I’ve NEVER had an Epileptic fit!

At least not a Clonic Tonic (Grand Mal) seizure.

I have things that give me a migraine, but no epilepsy. Not complaining……just saying.

I once had an appointment with a room full of Neuro type specialists and they couldn’t believe I’d never had a fit considering the size and location of my AVM.

I told the Doctors I had been to my share of dubs and dance parties back in the day and stared at enough strobe lights.

Consider this as a silver lining.

I’ve never had an epileptic fit!

Assistance Please

Published November 26, 2015 by helentastic67

Assistance please

Some people have really got no idea how the system I live in works and these are people that work in this system and generally (?) want to be helpful. But anyway;-

Example 1

I live in private rental, so when trying to negotiate extra assistance in other areas. I will mention, I live in private rental, to make the point that I’m already doing it tough, paying horrendous rental on a disability pension.

Instead of helping me in the area that I’ve called them for (maybe a donated computer or whatever) they suggest – have I considered applying for Public Housing?

Are all the people they deal with idiots? Applying for Public Housing was on my Top 5 list about 7 years ago and to make it clear NOT BECAUSE I WANT TO!

So, for those who don’t know, you apply for Public Housing and it’s a wait list longer than life itself. Then you get forms your doctor (generally GP) to fill in and that qualifies you for early housing because in my case I have a disability.

That is still 5 years away!

And this is still for Housing that will be smaller than what I want or need, in an area I should be paid to live in. Just so I can pay a fraction of the rent I now pay, so I will have more money to spend not to be home!

I’m a home body, so it seems to defeat the purpose agreed?

I don’t think I’m the type of person who would do well for very long in Public Housing. What remains of my Good Mental Health, would not last long around people who have bigger mental health issues than mine and I really don’t want to live in high density living with people of a drug element, when I’ve managed to not resort to drugs to fix my problems…

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