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Thread: New here and on pins and needles waiting for a diagnosis

  1. #11
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    I'm glad you have family support, Marycain. Two hours!? That's a long way to go for medical care. Does it ever make you nervous being that far from medical help?

    I am seeing specialists that are about two and a half hours away, but my regular docs are right in town - just a half hour away for me. Makes me feel lucky!
    "If you trust Google more than you trust your doctor than maybe it's time to switch doctors."

  2. #12
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    When I say we live in the country, I do mean country! The closest town with a hospital is thirty-five miles away - there is no rheumatologist there. It is also the closest Wal-mart or other large department store. The community closest to us has one stoplight - It's actually closer for me to drive to Nashville, Tennessee than to go to the major teaching hospitals in Kentucky, which are on the other side of the state, a five-hour drive from where we live.

  3. #13
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    Oh no! That's awful, Marycain! My Rheumatologist is five minutes away, along with my nearest hospital and more than half of my doctors!

    Aren't you worried incase you ever need emergency hospital care or an ambulance? I'm worried about you! :cry:

  4. #14
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    My rheumatologist gave me his cell-phone number, so I can call him with any questions or concerns after regular office hours, and I can also e-mail him. And I can have labs drawn at my kids'doctor and faxed to him, so it works out okay. Although I have had a couple of emergency ambulance rides - not a fun experience. Especially on one historic occasion at night, when the ambulance encountered a large deer herd, who paid no attention to lights and sirens and had the road completely blocked. The driver was afraid to get out and try to shoo them off the road, so he kept blowing the horn and trying to inch forward, and we finally ended up completely surrounded by about 20 bucks and does. I had a temp of 105 and was throwing my socks up, but it was so funny that I was laughing too. Especially when the medics radioed in to the hospital that we had been "delayed by deer"! Of course, deer collisions in this part of the country are often fatal, so it might have been tragic instead of funny, but it's one hospital trip I won't forget.

  5. #15
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    That's a bit more reassuring, I must say! You had me very worried there, Marycain!

    Oh my word! I've never heard of an ambulance being held up by deer before! That must have been really scary, but I can definitely see the funny side! I suppose that one wouldn't know whether to laugh or cry! It could drive someone hysterical, I can imagine! It must have been very frustrating though!

    How long does it take, on average, to get to the nearest hospital in an ambulance from where you live?

  6. #16
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    It takes an hour to get to the hospital, but there are ambulances stationed at the local fire department, about five miles away, and they are fully staffed by paramedics with medical training, who can start IVs and give meds, and send EKG readings to the hospital over the radio. So they can start treatment right in the ambulance, which makes it much better.

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    That's good!

    I wanted to ask you a question, if you don't mind. I hope that this doesn't sound stupid, but can you get Arthritis in your back (as in, your spine)?

    I have extreme back pain at the moment and my spine is in a terrible spasm. I have a Scoliosis, Spina Bifida and Scheuermann's Disease though, so those might be causing the pain, but this is the worst spasm that I have ever had and my mom told me that my back was extremely stiff when she tried to massage it.

  8. #18
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    There are several types of arthritis that affect the spine. Lupus generally tends to affect the peripheral joints (hips, shoulders, knees, elbows, wrists, ankles, fingers, etc.), but it can cause inflammation anywhere. So your pain could be lupus-related, but it's probably impossible to tell without some specialized tests of your spine. Do you have an orthopaedic surgeon for your scoliosis and kyophosis? Are you wearing a brace? If you've grown to where it isn't fitting properly, that could certainly cause a lot of pain and spasms.
    Plus, some people with Scheuermann's also have juvenile disc disorder (abnormal degeneration of the discs that seperate and protect the lumbar vertebrae). So this can cause a significant amount of back pain, or weakness or pain radiating down into the leg. Although you are fairly young, your pre-existing medical conditions may put you at higher risk for osteoporosis, so any sudden back pain could also be a vertebral fracture. With your medical history, there are a lot of possible reasons for your pain, so you probably need an MRI of your back just to be safe.

  9. #19
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    Hi Marycain!

    Thanks very much for your wonderfully detailed advice, as always!

    Yes, I do have an Orthopaedic Surgeon. The only problem is that he's always so busy!

    My ex-G.P. never bothered to refer me to anyone, even though she knew that I've always had a Scoliosis, which was getting worse, as I got older. Eventually, my back pain became unbearable and so my mother made an appointment with an Orthopaedic Surgeon, who specialises in spines. Unfortunately, I only got to see him in October last year and there was some reason why I couldn't get a brace at this time. He said that they could fix the problem when I was older, but not now.

    However, I have a lot of bone problems, so it may be a good idea to go and see a general Orthopaedic Surgeon (the Spinal Surgeon suggested it himself, actually because of my feet; I have completely flat feet and have to wear Orthotics. I also have terrible problems with my ankle bones, which "pop out" all the time. I also have a tilted pelvis, which looks like I have been in a car accident! and my hips dislocate a LOT!); I will speak to my Paediatrician/Paediatric Cardiologist about it.

    My mother was pregnant with twins and she lost the one, but I survived. This caused a lot of problems and so I was born with many bone and muscle irregularities, as well as other problems, so I think that I better have this checked out.

    There is a lot of Osteoporosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Arthritis in my family, making me even more at risk, so thank you for the advice; I will see if I can get an appointment with my Paediatrician/Paediatric Cardiologist today (Friday).

    I am worried because I have been in so much pain that I haven't slept the entire night! I also have a fever and an extremely sore throat, so I think that I had better go and see my doctor.

    My Gran has the worst Arthritis that I have EVER seen, along with Osteoporosis and Gout and she said that the doctor might release the spasm by injecting Cortisone into my spine, which is what they do for her.

    Thanks again, Marycain and keep well! I will let you know how it goes!

    P.S. I am still waiting for my urine specimen results from my Urologist; he tried to call on Wednesday, but we missed his call and he was operating all day yesterday, so we are hoping that he will call today. I will let you know as soon as we hear!

  10. #20
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    Marycain, I'm glad to hear you've got emergency medical personnel close to your home. That's got to give you some peace of mind. When my mother-in-law fell in our home and broke her hip, we called 911. We live in a the country...pretty rural...and several of our neighbors are first responders. It was so wonderful to have them come immediately - they were here in 5 minutes. Ambulance took longer, as it had to come from town. But she had some care right away.


    Jody
    "If you trust Google more than you trust your doctor than maybe it's time to switch doctors."

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