It’s A Bad Sign-us Infection

, , , , , | Healthy | October 15, 2018

Several months ago my cousin woke up with an absolutely massively swollen right eye, so naturally, she went to the hospital to have that checked out. They administered two CT scans, diagnosed her with a large, inoperable, cancerous tumor sitting right behind her right eye, and gave her six months to live.

Cancer is rampant in our family, so this makes sense in the context. However, she’s always been kind of easy-going and also, she refuses to believe it, so she just didn’t tell anybody and went about her life as usual.

A few weeks after the diagnosis, she was at a normal dentist appointment, and whenever anything touched her right cheek, it hurt a lot, more than it ever had at the dentist, even though she was just having a check done. Her dentist informed her that she had a severe sinus infection. She told him about her recent diagnosis, and he was absolutely not having it.

The next day they went back to the hospital together, in his free time, and he demanded they do another check and pointed out her sinus infection. It turned out he was right; she had a severe sinus infection, not a deadly tumor, that had spread up to right behind her right eye, and had caused an infection. She received normal treatment for that, and within a short time everything was back to normal. The first CT scan had been incorrectly calibrated, and the second one had been incorrectly interpreted.

Having spent many of my teenage years in hospitals myself, I’ve seen a lot, but I had never personally encountered a doctor as dedicated as that dentist before.

An Armful Of Judgement

, , , , , | Healthy | October 4, 2018

(I wake up one morning to find both arms so numb that I can hardly use them. In a panic, I get my mother to drive me to the local doctor’s office. He sends me to get bloodwork done at a different facility. This takes place during the follow-up visit.)

Nurse: *while taking my vitals* “And are your arms still numb?”

Me: “Yes, but they’re a bit better than before.”

(The nurse leads me to the exam room. The doctor enters after a few minutes.)

Doctor: “Okay, your blood work looks good, except for cholesterol. You really need to lose weight. Do you drink a lot of Cokes?”

Me: “Well… yes, but—”

Doctor: “You should give up all caffeinated drinks. They’re making you fat, and it’s very bad for your health.”

(The doctor proceeded to ramble about how I needed to stop eating sugar and start losing weight. He left the room with a final order to stop drinking Cokes. I never got a chance to ask him about my numb arms, and he never once said anything about the issue I’d gone there for in the first place. I don’t have insurance and am unemployed, so I couldn’t afford to go somewhere else. I ended up asking friends online for help and figured out how to address my problem through them.)

A Purposeful Discussion About Women’s Health

, , , , , , | Healthy | October 3, 2018

(My mom and I are discussing a cousin who lives in different state. She has been hospitalized and is losing blood due to problems with her uterus.)

Mom: “I just don’t understand why the doctors refuse to just remove it. She doesn’t intend to have any more children, and this thing is threatening her life. I had to argue for them to remove mine when I started having issues, and I was almost fifty with two adult kids already!”

Me: “Mom, let me tell you: doctors maintain this idea that a woman’s main purpose in life is to have children. They think that removing her uterus is equal to cutting off both legs. They view it as the last, most desperate act they can take. It’s ridiculous, outdated, and flawed, but it’s the sad truth.”

Sister: *who has been listening* “That actually explains a lot.”

The Doctor’s Prognosis Is Dislocated From The Truth

, , , , , , , | Healthy | October 1, 2018

This tale’s from a few years ago, and will need a little backstory. I have a multi-systemic collagen defect disorder called hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. To explain it in detail would take all night; suffice it to say that my joints dislocate very easily and, though I’ve learned to put them back by myself, there are some I just can’t fix unaided, the wrist of my dominant hand being one of these, for obvious reasons. Bear in mind, too, that dislocations — whether full or partial — hurt. A lot.

One evening, housesitting for a friend on the other side of my city, feeding her cats, I somehow managed to pop my right wrist half out of place. I knew it was out, and I was alone in the house, but — luckily, thought I — the nearest hospital was just over the road. I necked a dose of my usual liquid morphine, grabbed my walking stick left-handed, and headed over to Accident & Emergency.

It was quiet, so I was seen in about thirty minutes and sent for an x-ray, as per routine. When my x-ray was done, though, the doctor on duty left me to sit — on a hard, plastic chair in a cubicle, that was not helping my general chronic pain, while my morphine slowly wore off — for three hours.

After those long three hours, he finally bothered to come to me, and insisted, in the most supercilious, maddening way possible, that my wrist was fine, that the x-ray showed nothing, and that I should go home. I argued with him for a minute, but gave up. Words weren’t going to get through; that much was clear.

I sighed. Then, I asked him to humour me for a moment and get a firm grip of the hand on my injured arm. He did, not looking too pleased about it.

I yanked my arm back against his hold, hard. I could hear the crack as my wrist went back into its proper position, and so did he. The look on his face was an absolute picture.

I’ve never been back to that hospital since. And if I have my way about it, I never will!

Get Out Of There! Abort! Abort!

, , , , , , | Healthy | September 29, 2018

My mother told me about an experience one of her coworkers had.

The coworker had diabetes before she got pregnant. Her doctor considered her case high-risk, and sent her to another office in the city for some blood work. She had a referral, and all of the necessary info was sent to the office so that these blood tests could be performed. It was supposed to be an in-and-out procedure.

When she got there, the main doctor of this practice was quite curt with her, almost rude. At first she just chalked it up to him being in a bad mood, or needing to learn better bedside manners. Then, he told her, “You know, people like you shouldn’t be getting pregnant.”

She immediately asked what he meant by that. He went on to explain that people with certain health conditions, such as her diabetes, should not be reproducing. She responded that she was there for blood work, and then she was leaving; if he had any personal concerns, she wasn’t interested in hearing them.

The doctor waved her off and told her that she needed to sign some paperwork. She asked what paperwork, as her regular office should have sent her information over. He wouldn’t answer her and just kept pushing the papers at her, telling her to sign. Finally, she took the paperwork and started reading it.

The doctor was trying to force her into signing off for an abortion.

She immediately called her regular doctor and told him what was going on. Her doctor told her to drop everything, and get out of there. Just get up, and walk out, right now. She did.

Her regular doctor apologized profusely and told her he had no idea what the other doctor was up to. He told her he was going to report the practice, and asked if she wanted to lodge a complaint. She did.

The next day, the other doctor’s practice was shut down, and he lost his license. Apparently he had been doing this to other women, and he was taking it upon himself to decide who was — or was not — “worthy” to reproduce or get pregnant.

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