Off to the Doctor . . .

Not mine.

I don't have one, even though I have fairly decent health insurance.

I am going to eventually die horribly of something that can't be cured by a cup of tea.

No, we went to Helen's doctor.

Helen, of course, is 88, and varies between being the sort of old lady who bakes cookies for all the kids in the neighborhood and the sort that runs them off with a large stick while shouting about manners.

Last Tuesday she overexerted herself cleaning out her sewing room.

I had pointed out to her that she didn't need to finish it that day. She could shut the door, walk away, and come back to it.

Naturally, since I have no idea what kind of demanding schedule retired people are forced to work with, she ignored me, and stumbled and fell in the closet.

She had a pain on her shin.

By Friday we were in a gorgeous hospital with a waiting room that could give a convention center hotel a run for sheer style being tested for blood clots.

And today she was wheelchair bound.

I have a new respect for home health care professionals -- wheel chairs are horrible things. Like strollers, they have a one touch collapse feature. And like strollers, no one who does not actually have a degree in mechanical engineering can ever manage to accomplish a one touch collapse. I personally needed at least one more arm . . .

The number of people who will gather around to watch, without offering suggestions or help until you are done, is truly staggering.

Our first stop was her doctor, who is one of those specialists completely immersed in his science and devoid of all personality.

He also has that '80s Business Guy hair cut, and really hates me.

My fault.

He asked about our adventure in sonograms.

Helen, who was in a great deal of pain, was disjointed and emotional.

I told him that in my informed opinion as a retail employee (forgot to take off my attractive vest and name tag. Always take off your attractive vest and name tag.) it was her sciatic nerve -- the swift onset indicated to me that something was pinching the nerve and the inflammation was increasing the problem.

He glared at me, and launched into a highly technical discussion about bone spurs, arthritis and sciatica.

"On a scale of one to ten," he asked her, "where is your pain?"

"What?" She glared at him, and launched into a repeat of her largely incoherent ramblings on what is wrong, how much pain is involved, and all the housework she has to do when she gets home because she has been gadding about, in agony, in a wheelchair.

"It's an eleven," I told him.

** glare **

"It only goes to ten."

"Trust me. It goes to eleven."

"My scale only goes to ten."

"Obviously we're not watching the same movies." I did refrain from pointing out his hair proved he should have seen Spinal Tap several times, at least.

Things deteriorated from there.

She argued with everything he said, and instantly agreed that I was right when I repeated what he had said (translated from "Ha, ha, I'm a doctor and you are paying for my beach house"-speak to English).

He eventually agreed with me, and sent us off for an MRI, which is an entirely different post featuring bare feet, loud moaning, and a Greek Chorus of dancing metallic fillings.

The final nail in my coffin came as we were leaving, and I asked about mixing her exciting new meds with chamomile tea, and if he felt that some type of physical therapy adapted from Tai Chi and yoga could prove beneficial.


Christian said...

Really great blog! I noticed a mention about shoulder arthritis . I thought you might be interested to hear that both my parents and several of their friends have had problems with arthritis and we have been very lucky to have come across Bioflow. They are sold at shoulder arthritis and they have been worth every penny. They don't seem to work for everyone but they have helped reduce the pain in my parents arthritis so that they almost don't notice it any longer. They'd still be taking painkillers if it wasn't for wearing a Bioflow on their wrist

Anonymous said...

I was looking for blogs about tai chi and came across yours. I have whats referred to as a hard style Karate School and this is something we've been contemplating adding to it. Great blog you have and I've enjoyed reading the posts on it.