Friday, November 14, 2008

Isn't That Innnnteresting?

So, I had the appointment today with my new local neurologist. I will say that she passed the hub's inspection and got the "She's Not A Quack Or An A%&Hole...YET" stamp of approval. Seeing as he's the active medical proffessional in the family, and he's a really hard one to get by, she did pretty good.
He's the kind that goes in looking for intelligence, knowledge of the disease we're dealing with, the ability to make decisions about said disease, and they also have to be ok with the fact that he's going to be very involved (he's a doc) and will be with me at every appointment. If they pass all of these things, then we will proceed with forming a doctor/patient relationship.
I, on the other hand, go in and base my very factual opinion on things like bad breath, hair styles, do their shoes squeak when they walk (I know this sounds weird but it drives me bananas!), are their pants too short, do they talk with their eyes closed, and do they wear too much cologne/perfume. Oh, and they can't be "close talkers". If any of you were ever Seinfeld fans you would know what that means, but for those of you anti-Seinfeld-ites, it means that they get way too close to your face when they talk and it's really uncomfortable. This is a huge no no if you're anywhere near me. I need my personal space, and if you come into that, you might get hurt.
As you can see, both the hubs and myself base our judgments on highly educated check lists.

One thing I've noticed since being diagnosed with MS and local neuro shopping, is that they seem to think that all of my symptoms started the day I was diagnosed. Have you all noticed this?
Like today, we're going over the usual first appointment snoozefest stuff and she would say things like "Have you ever had numbness or tingling in your feet?" And I would answer "yes" and then she would ask how long ago and I would tell her off and on for two years. She would then look at me, puzzled (and they all have), and say "But you've only been diagnosed for seven months, right?"
So, I'm guessing that I'm completely abnormal in this field right?
None of you had ANY symptoms until the doctor came in and said "Well, it looks like you have MS". Then, on your way out of the doctors office, you fell down twice, you lost the ability to speak, you went blind in one or both eyes, and you started forgetting things like where you parked your car.
Then come the questions like "When did you have your first exacerbation?"
See, this question for me is a hard one to answer. I remember as a teenager that I always got migraines and that one time I couldn't see out of my eye and I do remember it hurting to move my eyes (you know, like look around) but seeing as how I'm 30 now, I don't exactly remember what age that happened. Plus, I used to fake a lot of illnesses so I know my parents didn't take me to the doctor for it.
So, I explain all of that (again) and she says "Well, do you think you were 19?" No, I know I wasn't 19.
"How about 18? Do you think it was when you were 18?" Nope.
We did this until we got to 16 and I said "Yes! You know, I was 16 when I had optic neuritis." I had an epiphany people!

But, like I said, she made it through the hub's check list and I liked her shoes so I think we'll give her a chance. Plus my neuro at Georgetown wants me to switch from Rebif to Tysabri and they have a really cool infusion center there so that will be nice.
Who would have thought that at 30 I would be impressed by nice shoes and great infusion centers?

9 comments:

Chrystal said...

You are truly an amazing person and friend. You take all of this like if it were nothing, while I sit here and worry about you. But your doing like I would. When Ethan(middleChild) was diagnosed with Diabetes, I thought I was done for, but I have managed with it, one step at a time. You are an inspiration to all who have MS, at least to me. If everyone took there diagnoses this way, what a wonderful world it would be.(shhh I'm still jealous of the husband thing).

LISA EMRICH said...

So good to hear that your appointment went well. I've not been to the Georgetown clinic before, but I've heard that it's nice. Also, being connected to the University and a research center, they are very experienced with Tysabri.

Sounds like you are in good hands. Too bad. You won't need to get into my neurologist's office. And next time you come this way, I just might be willing to watch over your brood. : )

BRAINCHEESE said...

I find myself being more watchful of office staff than then doctor themself...it's the minions who RUN the show, opening or closing the gate of access. THEY are the ones I critique harshly. LOL

And there is that bad breath thing, too. Shoes, not so much. LMAO

Linda D. in Seattle

Denver Refashionista said...

Good shoes? She's a keeper.

Bald Ben said...

I hear you on the sick before the diagnosis. I was obviously in trouble a long time ago and nobody picked up on MS, and I guess now all really want is for a Dr. to acknowledge this fact. I know they can't go back and fix it, but there would just be some sort of personal victory there. W000HOO, I told I was sick. In your face.

pUNKrOCKfairy said...

I think my physician evaluation philosophy is a cross between yours and your husband's. On the one hand, I want someone who is smart and realizes that I am too. And that recognizes that while I'm not an MD, my career makes me a difficult patient to bullshit. On the other hand, I prefer docs WITHOUT halitosis, and WITH some kind of relatable personality. If that personality is expressed by wearing nifty shoes, I consider it a bonus. Plus, I need someone who can handle the fact that both my husband and my father tend to express concern/worry in a way that can be easily confused with rage/volatility. So far, OBGYN's seem to have no problem with this, but neuro's are a bit put off by it. Figures.

Hope this new one gives you the best of both worlds. Good luck!

pUNKrOCKfairy said...

PS- I agree with CHEESE. The real deal-breaker is the office staff. I refrained from punching my OB's secretary because I adored him and I just wanted to get the hysterectomy over with without finding a new surgeon. But, lemme tell ya, she's really got it coming. My neuro's staff will get holiday cards & cookies though because they are saints! Very dilligent, kind, and organized saints.

Patti said...

I love your checklist. I think it is great. But I must confess, I kept going...her husband is a doctor? I didn't know that. I thought she said he was a....?!?! Hmmm, I really thought she had mentioned before that he is a....?!?!? And so I had to reread the post so I got the rest of it because apparently that was all I could focus on!

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