Posted in Health

You Need to be Your Own Advocate

 

Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a harrowing week of being at the hospital with my son who developed appendicitis over the weekend. My poor little guy was in so much pain. Sob. When we figured out he might have appendicitis, we immediately got him into the doctor who then made arrangements for him to go to the emergency room.

Photo credit: AJC1 via VisualHunt / CC BY-NC

We got our son into the hospital and we hoped he’d have surgery that night. Nope. He wasn’t considered an emergency case because his appendix hadn’t burst. According to the ultrasound, it was just inflamed. So they gave him pain medication and anti-nausea medication for the night. He was scheduled for surgery the next morning, but he was pushed back to noon because an emergency case had come in. When he finally went into surgery it was one thirty, and guess what, during our wait his appendix burst. The surgery took longer than expected and so has his recovery. We were in the hospital two days longer than we had planned.

 

Photo via Visualhunt.com

The reason I’m telling you this is because you must be your own advocate when you seek medical attention. I wish we hadn’t blindly followed the doctor’s advice and allowed him to push our son’s surgery back. I wish we had said we feel this is a real emergency and we want this taken care of now.

Another example I’d like to share with you is when I was diagnosed with breast cancer. The surgeon who performed my mastectomy originally recommended a lumpectomy because they had only found one spot.

Photo credit: KOMUnews via Visualhunt.com / CC BY

I told him I wanted an MRI done to make sure there weren’t any other cancerous spots. I wanted this to be a one and done kind of thing. I didn’t want to have to go through anything like this again.  His response was, “We don’t do MRI’s on people your age.”

I told him I didn’t care. I wanted to make sure there weren’t any other spots and he needed to order an MRI. He did and there were five other cancerous spots. Now if I had just listened to him, I’d be going back for more surgery and the cancer would’ve most likely spread through my body. My life would’ve been cut dramatically short.

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate everything the medical community has done for me. After all, they’ve extended my life and I get to see my kids grow up. But they’re not always right and some doctors have a tendency to cut corners whether it’s at the behest of insurance companies or for other reasons I’m not sure. So the moral of this story is: You need to be your own advocate for your health. Ask questions and push the issue when you need medical attention. Get second and third opinions. It could literally save your life.

 

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. Do you have any medical experiences you’d like to share? Please do. I love to hear from you!

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Posted in Health

Health Update :)

Hello everyone! I hope all is well with you. It has been a while since I’ve posted on my blog and I must apologize because I had every intention of keeping up with it, but the joke was on me because I had no ambition what so ever. All I wanted to do was sleep. I forgot how tired your body is after surgery and couple that with pain meds and well there isn’t much time to put a coherent thought together, let alone type it in sentence form. 🙂

It has been about two weeks since my surgery, so I thought I’d give you an update. My sentinel node was clear. This is incredibly good news because it means the cancer has not spread to my lymphatic system. So naturally I was jumping up and down, in an understated way of course, I don’t want to jiggle anything that still needs to mend.

With that great news hubby and I decided to take the kids up north. At first, I was concerned because the way I’ve been able to sleep is kind of sitting up. It was extremely painful for me to rise from lying flat on my back and we didn’t think there was a place for me to sleep comfortably in an upright position. Nevertheless, hubby figured it out and I was able to sleep quite comfortably.

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The weather was perfect, nice, and breezy and lots of sun. In addition, I have to confess that I wore my pajama pants all weekend. Even during the day. I decided I’m recovering from Cancer; I don’t have to dress for anyone. So I didn’t. 🙂 However, I did put on a pair of capri pants when I went to the store. I’ll only take my rebellion so far, after all, I’m setting an example for my boys! 😉 I know I’m living on the edge.

So while we’re celebrating the sentinel node being clear, there’s one more test that has to be conducted and it takes about 2 weeks. This test, I have no idea what the name of it is, but what it determines is whether or not chemo therapy will be beneficial for you. We’re hoping that the results state that chemo would not be beneficial.

The reason I feel this way is that chemo is very hard on the body. And the way I figure it, I’ve eliminated the chance for the cancer to come back by having a double mastectomy. Now it can come back to another part of my body that’s true. But my type of cancer needs Estrogen to survive. So, I figure I’ll just take an estrogen blocker for the rest of my life and no more cancer. 🙂

I’ll have to wait and see what the doctors say about that. So if you could send some positive vibes/prayers asking that I don’t have to do chemo, I’d really appreciate it!  Speaking about my doctors, I’d like to say a huge thank you to them for diagnosing my problem and answering all my questions. I had a lot of them. 🙂

So, there you have it. My health update. If you’ve had similar issues, leave a comment, we’d love to hear from you!