Friday, December 19, 2008

Hold the pose!

I went to the Rheumatologist yesterday. They had a cancellation and I got in early. I am very glad I got in early, but sweet mercy that was a long day! I was in his office for 3 hours! 3 HOURS!

First I was in the exam room, wearing an icky paper gown. I hate those gowns, they are so degrading. It is hard to feel an equal to the dr, one intelligent person speaking to another, when one of you is in dress pants, shirt and a lab coat, and the other is in paper. At least this gown ties in the back so I wasn't hanging in the breeze.

The office visit lasted about an hour where we discussed everything under the sun, including, but not limited to; professional soccer European leagues or American Leagues? (the answer of course, is European Leagues). TV, Good or Bad? Should I have finished college and should I go back when the kids are older? And finally, why the heck my hands, feet, knees and wrists ache and are swollen.

I was told that I am well spoken and have very good reflexes (I hate that little hammer!) I had to laugh at the well spoken part. Little did he know I've rehearsed this conversation in my head about 60 times, but I'll take complements where I can get them.

Then, the maniacal syringe wielding nurse returned. (Actually this lady was nice and gentle, but maniacal syringe wielding nurse sounds better.) She took my blood, then took me to the x-ray room.

I spent about an hour and a half in the x ray room. The dr wanted an x ray of everything! I think the only thing he did not want x-rayed was my elbows. It sounds like it would be simple. Lay there while the giant machine that looks like something out of a Star Wars movie shoots radiation into my body. Not so. I had to stand in strange positions and 'hold that pose' for 30 second intervals. Still does not sound too bad, but the poses were weird and those 30 seconds add up.

I felt like I was playing twister, only without the cute little dotted mat and giggling friends.

It seemed to go something like this. "Take your right arm and cross it over your chest. Now take your left index finger and stick it in your right ear. Good. Now open your mouth wide, and lift your right knee. Good. Now hold that pose!" and she would disappear behind the safety shield to click the photo.

Of course I have no clear answered yet. Just less blood in my body more sympathy for professional models. They are going to run more tests. His guess is Rheumatoid Arthritis. Though I don't quite fit there either. I never seem to fit into any category. He said I have some classic symptoms of both Fibromyalgia and RA, but not really enough of either to give a definitive diagnose. And also I have some weird symptoms that don't fit into either category. I'm unique. (I prefer that term over strange thankyouverymuch!)

So, I wait again. I was really happy though, with this dr. He was thorough. He listened. He seemed interested in getting to the bottom of this. He even explained how the test were run and how some of them they do in-house with an actual person and not a machine. An actual person can detect changes in the cells that a machine cannot and that is why I may have been testing negative to things that I am actually positive for. He said this is common since they moved to machines about 10 years ago for several of the tests. So I feel like he is going to help me figure this out, and not tell me to get more rest/exercise/ and take this pill like the other Rheumatologist I saw 4 or 5 years ago said.

He did give me a prescription for the inflammation. It takes about a week to see any results and about a month to feel the full effects. So hopefully by Christmas I'll feel marginally better.

Today, I am going to have a low key day that includes taking my kiddos to Walmart to buy gifts for each other. Trust me, I think that will be easier than having a maniacal syringe wielding nurse contort my body and then yell "Hold the pose!"


Lynn said...

Wow, Tricia, that sounds like one loooooong doctor's appointment. But how nice that he was thorough and seemed to care about getting to the bottom of your symptoms. I hope you find some answers soon.

Tonya said...

You're hilarious. I had to put on a paper gown shirt this week w/ the whole mastitis thing. Yes, degrading. And cold. I had to put my wool coat on over it - a fever didn't help! I do so hope they can help you figure this whole thing out. Pain is a pain. :-)

Tricia said...

Thank you Lynn. I hope he has some answers too.

And thanks Tonya. I had a sweater with me. Wish I'd have thought to put that on.

You know, I think blogging has made me a more positive person. I was thinking during the whole x-ray marathon that it really stunk, but it would make a great blog post!

Jennifer Unsell said...

So glad you found a doctor that you like!!! Hoping he will have some answers for you soon!!!