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How it Happened

Posted Jun 01 2007 3:55pm 2 Comments
I was at my friends cabin LAST WINTER and there was a huge pile of snow that reached up to about a foot away from the edge of her slanted roof. Ever since she was little they had climbed on the roof and then sledding off of the roof, onto the giant pile (that was formed into a little sledding run)....So I thought--Sounds Fun! It sure was fun for everyone who went before AND after me, but when I went I landed weird and ended up crushing a vertebrae (not too seriously, but enough to put me on reserve for half of my lacrosse season).... Smart thinking I know! Well I have recovered a lot, but have not really done a lot to work my back and strengthen it. I have been doin a lot of low impact work outs and stuff that does NOT aggrivate it, but now I think I can test the waters and work my back...Yoga Here I Come!
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I am on SSI and see my PCP mostly for chronic sinusitis and lumbar pain and spasms including some cervical arthritis. I have yet to receive any beneficial care. I am a 49 yo female and have had this condition for decades which is why i finally started going to the local clinic for treatment. If I walk mor ehtan 75 feet for shopping, errands or anything else debilitatiing lumbar spasms set in. More often than not, I have to slowly roll out of bed onto the floor on all fours and when able, push myself upright. I have a severely stiff neck that phys therapy, shiatsu massage or soaking in the tub will not alleviate. My neck remains like a block of grnaite and there is very little side-to-side turning radius. Also, my neck and glands are usually swollen giving me the double (triple) chin look. I've had my thyroid tested more than once: negative each time. I briefly saw an orthopaedic surgeon when i broke my ankle, voiced my concerns and why my PCP seemed to dismiss or diminish my concerns or condition (she thought that was odd too but not too odd for a welfare clinic) so she authorized an MRI. Results were that I had an L5 annular tear that never seems to fully close. Also some moderate yet progressive cervical arthritis and that the L5/S1 region was deemed "transitionary" (whatever that means)? My MRI was in 2004 and physical therapy (excepting the warm heat wraps) was of little to no benefit. I had to struggle with my PCP just to get a parking permit ie we'd go back and forth after several (required) office visits and eventually he'd ok a six motnh TEMPORARY permit which after 3 or 4 permits expiring and more unecessary office visits, I finally gave up and started using a friend's permit. He even had the gall to inform our local Dial-a-Ride transit service for the disabled that there "wasn't enough wrong" with me to be elegible for their service. The man who ran the service personally called and informed me of this. I was appalled yet not reactionary. I thanked him and that was that. I had to personally hire people to take me places since I could not walk to the nearest bustop, and to this day, have to squat down in store aisles or anywhere else that requires 75 feet or more distance walking. Not only embarrassing but debilitating, frustrating and sometimes when alone I just cry. There is nothing else for me to do. Although he's never voiced it, because I go to a welfare clinic, perhaps I am on the receiving end of welfare clinic biases ie perhaps he sees me as a lazy floater trying to cut corners and work the system. It sure comes across like that. I have never given him ANY reason to think that nor do I deserve to endure what I do possibly because of such biases. Think there may be merit to my considering that as a possibility? I remember asking him if it would be appropriate to prescribe any kind of assistance device (as needed) from a basics walker, a wheelchair or eventually and only if needed, a motorized scooter. He dismissed and and all suggestions and countered that he "didn't want to encourage lazyness or being too sedentary". What?? Even with challenges, I have never been lazy, lazy minded or any kind of couch pertater! I was shoked but again, accepted whatever I was told. It was back then that I thought there might be some unfounded biases going on. He even put it in a write up that I self-diagnosed "what she calls her PTSD".  What? I was shocked to read that write up. That was a total falsehood. The overall writeup were assumptive, suggestive and at best, detrimental. After that, I rarely went and was very careful and guarded as far as opening up. That amounted in yet another writeup as being "vague". Those write ups were more like a rap sheet I felt (futilly) compelled to have exponged. I have very little faith in confiding to medical professionals after that. I recall an incident when I gently bent over and my back went pop, pop, lock and couldn't get up nor make it to the kitchen to turn off the burner or get to the phone. I had to crawl from the floor with a locked up back to do that and spent the next two weeks in a wheel chair (i had to purchase because he refused to prescribe one for me). I refused to go in to see him nor is he aware I went thru such an experience. I no longer bring up my back challenges whatsoever. I only see him for sinus issues nor does he ask. Even after a sinus ct scan and endless office visits, whatever's at the root of the problem has yet to be diagnosed or corrected. Has the same feel to it like my back problems- minimized or dismissed.  I voiced concerns as to whether the painfully stiff neck is related to my back or sinus condition ie possible meningitis? Was never tested for that (dismissed). Instead, I get a letter in the mail syaing everything's fine and I should not be in the pain I am and to have a nice day. Can you imagine that? More office visits and not one thing has changed except the money pouring in for the visits. I'd give anything for a true diagnosis and treatment of those challenges. Does the University of Washington take on patients that are on SSI? The UW is well known for their spinal care. Can anyone articulate on any of this? Thank you. "Frustrated" An email rspn also appreciated. Plz, no spam, bots or commercial solicitations. E: back.2basics2009@hotmail.com

** Cant Take Much More of This **

I am on SSI and see my PCP mostly for chronic sinusitis and lumbar pain and spasms including some cervical arthritis. I have yet to receive any beneficial care. I am a 49 yo female and have had this condition for decades which is why i finally started going to the local clinic for treatment. If I walk more than75 feet for shopping, errands or anything else debilitatiing lumbar spasms set in. More often than not, I have to slowly roll out of bed onto the floor on all fours and when able, push myself upright. I have a severely stiff neck that phys therapy, shiatsu massage or soaking in the tub will not alleviate. My neck remains like a block of granite and there is very little side-to-side turning radius. Also, my neck and glands are usually swollen giving me the double (triple) chin look. I've had my thyroid tested more than once: negative each time. Now things have progressed where my feet (and a little in my hands) are numb and tingle and I am usually achy and flu-like in nearly all joints and my leg, back and neck muscles are so stiff I can hardly move and have to shuffle on feet I can hardly feel. Add that to debilatating lumbar spasms. I am fatigued and achy all over. If I make the mistake of barely stubbing a toe nail, EXTREME pain radiates throughout. This can't be normal at 49. I briefly saw an orthopaedic surgeon when i broke my ankle, voiced my concerns and why my PCP seemed to dismiss or diminish my concerns or condition (she thought that was odd too but not too odd for a welfare clinic) so she authorized an MRI. Results were that I had an L5 annular tear that never seems to fully close. My back is ramrod straight and no give or bend in the lower region. My back look rigid and tense and never looks relaxed. There appears over compensating elsewhere hence the weird stature, balance, posture, muscle tension etc. I look and walk like i've got a stick in my *ss. Nothing like growing up to that kind of teasing. Also some moderate yet progressive cervical arthritis and that the L5/S1 region was deemed "transitionary" (whatever that means)? My MRI was in 2004 and physical therapy (excepting the warm heat wraps) was of little to no benefit. I had to struggle with my PCP just to get a parking permit ie we'd go back and forth after several (required) office visits and eventually he'd ok a six motnh TEMPORARY permit which after 3 or 4 permits expiring and more unecessary office visits, I finally gave up and started using a friend's permit. He even had the gall to inform our local Dial-a-Ride transit service for the disabled that there "wasn't enough wrong" with me to be elegible for their service. The man who ran the service personally called and informed me of this. I was appalled yet not reactionary. I thanked him and that was that. I had to personally hire people to take me places since I could not walk to the nearest bustop, and to this day, have to squat down in store aisles or anywhere else that requires 75 feet or more distance walking. Not only embarrassing but debilitating, frustrating and sometimes when alone I just cry. There is nothing else for me to do. Although he's never voiced it, because I go to a welfare clinic, perhaps I am on the receiving end of welfare clinic biases ie perhaps he sees me as a lazy floater trying to cut corners and work the system. It sure comes across like that. I have never given him ANY reason to think that nor do I deserve to endure what I do possibly because of such biases. Think there may be merit to my considering that as a possibility? I remember asking him if it would be appropriate to prescribe any kind of assistance device (as needed) from a basic walker, a wheelchair or eventually and only if needed, a motorized scooter. He dismissed any and all suggestions and countered that he "didn't want to encourage lazyness or being too sedentary". What?? Even with challenges, I have never been lazy, lazy minded or any kind of couch pertater. I was shocked but again, accepted whatever I was told and remained polite. And asking for pain relievers is a no-no. That was the first and last time I asked for pain relievers. I left feeling like I was perceived as someone pill shopping. It's an act of congress to get me to take any pills let alone pain pills. No history of pill addition notwithstanding, that was denied too. I was left to suffer out excruciating pain. I look around and see people who doctor shop for pills yet those of us that actually need occasional pain relief are denied. Sheesh. Collectively, it was back then that I began to think there might possibly be some unfounded biases going on. He even put it in a write up that I self-diagnosed "what she calls her PTSD". What? I was shocked to read that write up. There were several unwarranted and unfounded disparaging remarks and falsehoods. I fell into a silent deep depression and lost faith that I could be helped and have trust issues. That writeup were assumptive, suggestive and at best, detrimental. Like the phone call from Dial-a-Ride, I was afraid he was going to dash off some negative writeup, send it to dshs and I would end up cut off and homeless. I was scared to death and depressed that he could have the power of someones fate in his hands. Although not guilty, I still had nightmares for months on end. I was just plain scared. After that, I rarely went to see him and remain careful and guarded. That amounted in yet another writeup as being "polite yet vague". Those write ups were more like a rap sheet I felt (futilly) compelled to have exponged. Strange but true. I recall an incident when I gently bent over and my back went pop, pop, lock and I couldn't straighten up nor make it to the kitchen to turn off the burner or get to the phone. I had to crawl from the floor with a locked up back, excruciating pain and spent the next two weeks in a wheel chair (one i had to purchase because he refused to prescribe one for me).After that I refused to go in to see him for some time nor is he aware I went thru such an experience. I no longer bring up my back challenges whatsoever like they don't exist nor does he ask. Even after a sinus ct scan and endless office visits, whatever's at the root of the problem has yet to be diagnosed or corrected. Has the same feel to it like my back problems- minimized or dismissed yet lots of endless office visits. I voiced concerns as to whether the painfully stiff neck is related to my back or sinus condition ie possible meningitis? Was never tested for that (dismissed). Instead, I get a letter in the mail syaing everything's fine and I should not be in the pain I am and to have a nice day. Can you imagine that? More office visits and not one thing has changed except the money pouring in for the visits. I'd give anything for a true diagnosis and treatment of those challenges. Does the University of Washington take on patients that are on SSI? The UW is well known for their spinal care. Can anyone articulate on any of this? Thank you. "Frustrated" I don't know how much more of this I can take. Noone should have to live like that. Is this all I have to look forward to? I feel like I could end up opting out to finally escape the pain. It's be worth it. This is too much to endure and at 49 I'm steadilly going downhill. I'm so tired of it all...

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