These times almost always come when a medical professional has declined to recognize that I DO know what’s going on with my body, something unusual is happening, and I want it to be taken care of.
Now, as I think I mentioned in my last post, every time I get the flu, I experience it as a GI bug. Now, you add POTS into the mix, and you have someone who is easily dehydrated and who is hit harder by dehydration (and the loss of electrolytes that tends to come with it) than the average person. Just reading that sentence, I think you can imagine that this is not a good combination of things.
The ONLY reason I went to the doctor’s office today is because my GP has told me that when this happens, I need to get in and get fluids so we can prevent ER trips that otherwise tend to result from this sort of thing. Even if an ER trip might not have ended up necessary, having fluids added to my system helps me bounce back a lot faster – I mean like 2-3 days faster, if not more.
Because I had to make a same-day appointment, I couldn’t get in with my GP. I saw a nurse practitioner in the same-day area. I’ve seen this same NP before, and it was an…underwhelming experience. I had gone in because I had back pain in an area where I don’t usually have back pain. He informed me that my back pain was because of my ‘central obesity’ – in other words, ‘your back hurts because you’re fat’. Nevermind that I’ve had back pain issues since I was 15 and weighed 85 lbs. (No, I didn’t have an eating disorder, I’m small-boned everywhere but my shoulders, and I was mildly athletic back then.)
So when I saw him walk in, my heart sank.
I learned all sorts of fun things today. Apparently, when you’re 27, 100.0 doesn’t count as a fever – you need 100.5. And that part of the doctor’s office doesn’t do IV fluids. Oh, and neither would the ER, if I went there (All the more fun because I’ve gone in to the ER dehydrated a bit further than this and they…give me IV fluids and an IV anti-emetic). And I wasn’t ‘really’ dehydrated because my heartrate wasn’t elevated and my blood pressure was only a little low. Oh, and Sharon, just so you know, the NP thinks a Lyme titer on me is a waste of time because I didn’t get a bulls-eye rash (though I was insistent enough about it that he gave in – I didn’t bother mentioning that only 70% of people with Lyme’s get that rash, I just kept on about all of the other tests being negative except one for inflammation and I WANTED it, damn it!).
I’m mad. I waited over an hour to see him. He didn’t help me the way my GP said they would be able to help me. He didn’t even really LISTEN to me. I think he’s one of those people who went into medicine to be Right, not to help people. I spent energy and effort I didn’t really have because I believed I could get help, and all I got for my effort was a parking ticket because they weren’t done with me until 1 hour 45 minutes past my appointment time.
I don’t feel good, and I’m sick, and I know the only thing that has consistently worked to make me feel less sick when I’m like this is IV fluids, and I couldn’t get them. I would have been half-tempted to drop myself off at the ER except I was already at the end of what I could do, and the ER waiting room was PACKED. (I know this because my roommate got herself sent to the ER today, for what turned out to be a hellish migraine, and I had brought some books to give her in case she was going to be stuck there for a long time. Said roommate is awesome because even though she was in the ER for 6 hours, she stopped on the way home and got me a bottle of Gatorade.)
The fiance came home early even though it might have meant more traffic because on top of everything else, my normally very responsible aide had a bit too much to drink last night and was too hungover to come in. We lucked out and traffic wasn’t too bad (I guess because everyone else headed out early for the holiday weekend?). But yeah, I’m sick and spent energy that could have gone towards continuing to get well on a wild goose chase.
Perhaps the worst part of all is knowing that if I had been able to get in to see my GP, I have no doubts he would have given me the IV fluids. And the lyme titer test, without a fight.