Thursday, October 26, 2006

Everyone Knows Best

I've got my appointment with Dr. B. tomorrow in Philly though I can't imagine he'll have any good news for me yet as far as the insurance company goes. More on that later.

Last week I had two, count 'em, two doctors appointments. I had to see the periodontist and the podiatrist (my orthotics are literally in pieces in my shoes, not good for someone who has trouble walking anyway). Yes, normally I would only schedule one of these appointments a week since I can't take the excitement of actually going outside of the one square block that I live on too often, but I threw caution to the wind as I thought when I made the appointments that I might be having surgery soon, so it would be a good idea to get all the other stuff out of the way.

I've been putting off all the other little maintenance health appointments (got the eye doctor next week, trying to make an appointment for a mammorgram too) because I just can't bear to explain to anyone else what's going on when they look at me and say, "What happened to you?!" I'm sad and depressed about it and it makes me sadder and more depressed to have to talk about it. So I have to explain as succinctly as possible what is going on and what is to be done about it. Then I have to hear their diagnosis/suggestions/war stories. I guess because back pain is prevalent that almost everyone has experienced it to some degree, almost everyone thinks they are qualified to offer me advice.

The periodontist (gum doctor) suggested I read this book, basically implying that my back problems are all in my mind. I might accept this, except that I've seen my xrays, and they aren't of my brain. As the hygenist was taking off my bib and raising up the chair (which I'd asked her to warn me if she was going to do and she did as she was ratcheting it, grrr!), she said, "So, are you going to get the book?"

That was Tuesday. Friday I see the podiatrist (foot doctor). More explaining about the cane and the way I'm walking, or not, and that no, surgery is not scheduled yet because of Aetna not approving this surgery. His advice? Go to other insurance companies that are approving it and get letters to send to Aetna proving that they are not up to the standards of care of these other companies. He looked at me like he was surprised that I was not writing it all down. I just smiled, nodded and said, "Ok." I didn't even want to launch into the story of how NO insurance companies are paying for it, officially anyway, because he probably would have spent a lot more time lecturing me on how to get around that. But, *sigh* I'm getting very good at steering people away from the subject of my situation and brought up the reason I was there, my orthotics, to divert him.

So tomorrow I see Dr. B. (spine doctor) and hope to at least get some additional information on the surgery since it doesn't seem like there's been any developments on Aetna's side of things yet, as Maureen hasn't called to rub it in, er, I mean tell me about it.

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