So I switched hospitals. I think I shared that this was something I had been considering for a long time. It took speaking to my primary doctor, who agreed, before I pulled the trigger. I spent a considerable time praying over finding the right doctor. And asking God to please bring me a doctor who will actually listen to my entire medical saga thus far.
Well this week, my prayers were answered.
I made an appointment with a local rheumatologist, yet part of the new hospital. I wasn’t expecting much and frankly, was only using this appointment to “get into the system” at this hospital. The MS doctor had already referred me to two rheumatologist, which are the best of the best doctors at the hospital. They initially said I couldn’t been seen till spring of 2017 (yes- this is the reality of just trying to get a diagnosis people). After many emails back and forth, and lots of pressure from my side, the MS doctor was able to get me in this year.
But now, I don’t even know if I will need them. That’s how great my appointment went this week.
Introducing Dr. K.
I had nothing prepared to say. But I came armed with 4″ of paperwork and all my MRI’s to date. When she walked into the room, I just said, “I’m really happy to finally meet you. I have a complicated medical history story. And there isn’t one doctor who has bothered to listen to it all. Will you be the first one?”
“I’m all ears”, she said.
For the next hour, I took her through every single twist and turn. From my attacks in 2013 through to this year. She took extensive notes during the entire story, frowned at various time (like when I shared the doctors suspected I had a tumor and I was rushed in for a MRI). And she got angry at parts of my story, “Why didn’t that doctor see you? What was his reason?!?” And when. I explained how I lived for over a month, thinking. I must have MS since I was referred to the MS doctor, she said, “There is a constant battle between rheumatology and MS. Both departments are constantly referring patients back and forth. It’s a long standing battle, I’m afraid and it puts patients like you, in limbo.” I hadn’t realized the politics and dynamics between these two departments, so it was refreshing to hear such a personal insight.
When I explained that I had ordered my medical records and that they were littered with errors, and that I didn’t have time to clean them up and wait 60 days for doctors to respond to my complaints she said, “Don’t worry. I’m not going to be biased here. But just so you know, the MS doctor wrote a very nice note in here about you.”
I presented my case and explained what disease I thought I had. But that I was open to other theories, however no one had diagnosed me to date. When I explained we had maxed out our deductible, she replied, “Well we are going to reorder every single test that has ever been done on you.”
I watched as her fingers feverishly pecked away at the keyboard, multiple times. Then said, “Everything I do, from here till the end of the year, will be free. Come January, I’ll be on the hook for everything.”
I shared all the supplements I have been taking and Dr. K said, “Great- going the all natural route. You’re taking everything I would recommend.”
“For now, no medications. I don’t want to mask any of your symptoms. Let’s get all these tests run. Review in two weeks- then make a game plan.”
I seriously love Dr. K.
Twelve vials of blood later, I left with a big smile on my face. I finally have a doctor listening to me and managing my case. There is one special test that can only be run by the actual hospital, so I need to drive there. Between the kids schedules, that pushes that test out to later next week. And that’s the one test which always comes back abnormal.
All in all, it’s been a good week. I even ran a 10k race. Although my time was four minutes slower than last years, I’ll take it. I’ve been through hell and back all summer, so just to finish was my goal. I thought I would have to walk the race. But I didn’t. I ran the whole way.
The fighter in me kept going till the finish line.