Friday, September 14, 2007

Two weeks too long

On August 29th I found myself going to the ER with irregular heartbeat and pain, pain, pain in the region of the gallbladder, in my back and shoulder. After getting the heartbeat straightened out, and a scan of the gallbladder was done it was diagnosed that I had a practically non-functioning gallbladder except to cause me bilary colic and one of the "fill in" doctors covering for my regular doctor said that I would have to have it taken out. Then the surgery was scheduled for two days later. I would just have to suffer a couple of days. THEN the irregular heartbeat was continuing again and a lung specialist was called in. After lung scans, it was found that I had a large amount of fluid on my lungs and surgery was postponed. The lung dude removed the fluid the following day with a long, long needled that is inserted between the ribs and fluid drawn out. He removed a quart and a half of fluid from my right lung! If I hadn't seen the bag I would not have believed it at all. My breathing was better, but the gallbladder pain was intense. I couldn't eat, I didn't want to do anything. And just to make things more interesting, a gastroenterologist did endoscopy and found I had several ulcers, one big one and several smaller. They were hoping that was the cause of my pain, but they should really carry a diagram of the body because the pain was NOT in that area. They were not listening to me, and that was quite frustrating. They just don't listen to the patient.

My main doctor is in a medical group of doctors that have an agreement to cover for each other so they can have lots more time off for golf or whatever the hell they do in their free time. So, you never see the same doctor more than once a week. I understand they have families, etc. but seeing your main doctor twice in a two week stay is totally ridiculous. And seeing six doctors, twice each is lame. No one knows what is going on, no one knows me, really. No one can get to know my case. So, I lay there while one day one doctor said they were going to send me home to come back three weeks later for gallbladder surgery even though I lay there in a number 10 pain unable to eat or sleep. Then the specialists all concluded it was ok to go to surgery but the surgeon was not convinced I would not die on the table and so I called in another surgeon for a second opinion. My husband was going completely apeshit. That added some unnecessary tension because if the dumbass doctors would just LISTEN to us, that I had similar symptoms in 1987, and found some weird growths and adhesions back then, then we could have gotten the show on the road.

Finally, my lung doctor called in a consultant in critical care and he said he thought the problem was the gallbladder...NO DUH! They scheduled surgery finally, and what they found was a very constricted gallbladder which was inbedding itself into my liver. My pancreas was stuck to my stomach (all from adhesions and scar tissue from my '87 surgery). That all removed, and the gallbladder removed, the intense pain was finally gone, and now am on Prednisone for healing (which is also making this bout of gout disappear, too). I am having a bit of a breathing problem, which will be cured soon, hopefully....if Larry, Moe, Curly, Joe and Fred can get their shit together. Otherwise, I am heading for a university hospital in Chicago.


Poodles said...

They were probably just buying time til they could get your insurance to approve the gallbladder removal.

Stardust said...

poodles, that's probably a BIG part of the problem. But don't the insurance companies realize all the added costs of other testing etc that physicians do to justify to the insurance company the patient's need to stay there. They want you out. After all that ordeal, I was home...weak and in big surgical pain less than 48 hours after major surgery and no one home to help. The first day I had two pieces of toast and a little can of soup all day long till hubby got home at 6.

Poodles said...

The problem is the insurance companies are always looking for a way out of approving. Trust me, I have worked in this field for a long time. And the fact that they can dictate how long you can stay irritates me to no end.

Just glad you are doing ok, and are hopefully on the road to recovery. Hope you have a hot tub too soon.

Stardust said...

It is irritating and then when you have a problem come up like happened with me Friday night, the doctor tells you "go to the ER". Does that make sense? Wouldn't it make sense for a person with a lung problem to begin with to be watched a bit more closely before being thrown out the door? They are probably hoping you will die and let the life insurance company pay up. geesh!

Dwight said...

Good morning,

I am glad to know that you are feeling better and the errant Gall Bladder has been dealt with. I suffer from chronic Pancreatitis myself and realized (thanks to my doctor in India) that no one knows my body better than me!

With wishes for a speedy recovery...


Stardust said...

dwight, thanks for the kind wishes.
I feel for you suffering from chronic pancreatitis. Just having the acute form of it at present I have a bit of an idea of what you must have to live with. It's interesting how the body is all interconnected, one thing is linked and connected to another. Then we have these useless parts like appendix, gallbladder and wisdom teeth that cause terrible pain and problems and need to be removed.

By the way, my family doctor is Indian who was born here in the USA but parents were born in India.