A question for those of you that have MS diagnosis and need advice

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Lorgirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 58
   Posted 8/27/2006 3:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi

I wrote an earlier post stating that my husband and I are worried that he may have MS. The doctor has never even mentioned the possiblity, but with my husband's recent symptoms and his MRI results, we are concerned. (dizziness, and today he felt pins/needles when out in the heat)

One huge issue I am dealing with besides the obvious worry about his health is that we are in the process of relocating to a different state for his job. He has already moved there and is living in an apartment. His company is going to move us and help us sell our house and buy a new one down there. I am planning on staying in my state until January so my son can finish his first semseter of high school. We will be putting our house on the market soon. When I leave here, I will be giving up a job I've had for 18 years and one that had good health insurance. I don't make great money, but it is a decent job.

IF my husband does in fact have MS, I am torn on what to do. The job he has now is with the same company, but he got a promotion. He can't go back to his old job because it is filled. If we decided to stay here, he would have to find another job. I am just worried about quitting a good job not knowing what course his MS could take if he has it.

I know I am thinking way ahead, but it's hard not to when so many big decisions are supposed to be happening regarding our relocating very soon. He is going to call his neurologist he has here tomorrow and see if he can get into see him late this week when he comes home for a visit. Otherwise he will have to start over in his new state with a new doctor.

Can I ask you guys how much MS has changed your lives as far as working goes? My husband is a plant manager of sorts and does a lot of walking around in his job. Are most of you still able to work most of the time?

Does anyone know if we changed health insurance, if the new insurance will turn you down if you have a preexisting condition?

SOrry for all the questions, but I have so much running thru my mind right now. My husband doesn't want to discuss this stuff until we know something for sure. Unfortunately, in MS you don't always know for sure for a long time.

Thanks.

Lori

Kimber
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 1852
   Posted 8/27/2006 4:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Lorgirl,

I'm sorry your husband is having such problems. There are many conditions that can be causing his symptoms and MRI's can sometimes take a while for things to show up that might indicate MS. I read your post that said he had nonspecific white matter lesions. The report will usually say if those lesions are usually seen in X illness. My husbands MRI stated that his lesions were highly suggestive of MS. Is he going to the same doctor that did his previous MRI's? If so because he didn't mention any difference between the two it might be something to ask about.

MS is very unpredicatable in it's course, and I do understand your concerns. My husband no longer works but many people, and we have some men here, that still do. I think your husband may be right in trying not to worry about too much until you know for sure what youre dealing with, although I know that's easier said than done!

Insurance varies and depends on the company. Getting insurance as an individual is very difficult with a pre-existing condition, group coverage with a company is much easier to obtain. Some may ask you to wait a certain amount of time before they cover, and others dont consider pre-existing conditions if there has been no gap in coverage between policies. This is just my personal experience with insurance as my husband is on my policy but others may have more detailed info and explain better than I can :-)

I wish you both luck and please let us know how his appointment goes.

Kimber
 
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Lorgirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 58
   Posted 8/27/2006 4:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Kimber

Thanks for responding. One thing I think we have going for us is that my husband has always worked for the same company, but we have never used their insurance since they have to pay premiums and I don't at my job. We won't have any time period where we won't be covered, so I'm hoping all will be ok as far as his insurance covering him IF he were diagnosed.

Can I ask you how long it took before your husband had to stop working after he was diagnosed?

Kimber
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 1852
   Posted 8/27/2006 5:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Lorgirl,

My husband has a very slow progressive type of MS, and worked for over 15 years not knowing he had it. He was diagnosed late, unfortunately, and by the time of dx he could no longer do his job which involved a lot of standing and walking. Most people who get diagnosed have a relapsing/remitting course with off and on symptoms, sometimes lingering symptoms but are still able to work.

A question for you though while I'm thinking about it, I'm assuming that he has but has any blood work been done to rule out other possiblities?
 
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Lorgirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 58
   Posted 8/27/2006 6:14 PM (GMT -6)   
When he first had the dizziness in 2003, he had all sorts of blood tests, but I do not think he had a Lyme's test which I've heard a lot of people talk about. So, that is something we will suggest to the doctor also.

Thanks again.

Mezazinine
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 100
   Posted 8/28/2006 7:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Lorgirl,

I'll probably get shot by some here for saying this but I'll go ahead and say it. If at all possible, hold off on getting a MS diagnosis until your insurance issues are worked out. Take care of all of your insurance issues including health, life, and disability. Once he gets that label, it will be a lifetime of issues. There are certain rules about pre-existing conditions, group coverage and open enrollment periods that you may be able to work around if he does get the diagnosis, but they are complicated and it's best to not deal with the headache.

Here's where I'll probably anger some people. It probably won't make a difference in the long run if he's diagnosed now versus 6 months from now. The MS drugs help but they're not so great that it's going to make a difference in the long run if he starts them now versus a few months from now. I personally think it's best to wait and make sure that once he gets answers, you and he will have the means to get the appropriate treatment.

uppitycats
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2135
   Posted 8/29/2006 4:24 AM (GMT -6)   
Mezazinine said...
Lorgirl,

I'll probably get shot by some here for saying this but I'll go ahead and say it. If at all possible, hold off on getting a MS diagnosis until your insurance issues are worked out. Take care of all of your insurance issues including health, life, and disability. Once he gets that label, it will be a lifetime of issues. There are certain rules about pre-existing conditions, group coverage and open enrollment periods that you may be able to work around if he does get the diagnosis, but they are complicated and it's best to not deal with the headache.

Here's where I'll probably anger some people. It probably won't make a difference in the long run if he's diagnosed now versus 6 months from now. The MS drugs help but they're not so great that it's going to make a difference in the long run if he starts them now versus a few months from now. I personally think it's best to wait and make sure that once he gets answers, you and he will have the means to get the appropriate treatment.
 
So, why would you think you'd get shot or anger some people, for giving very sound, rational advice??  Indeed, it is important to make sure, if at all possible, that your financial affairs -- health insurance, all that, are in order, if there is any question about a diagnosis.  And indeed, 6 months isn't all that long in the grand scheme of things, if it is indeed MS, and a long-term, life-long chronic condition.
 
Lorgirl, I've been reading your posts, and here's my -- again, uninformed not-a-doctor opinion: Sounds like your husband likes his job, he's getting a promotion.  I'd say go ahead and move forward with that, sign up for the health insurance with his employment, and when you re-locate there, look for employment yourself (or start looking now; six months isn't a long time to be searching, these days..)  You said you're job might not be the best but has good benefits...you might find something you like better and with good benefits, too.
 
You can't plan ahead for every contingency in life.  Sometimes stuff happens.  All you can do is make sound decisions, a few at a time, and move forward.  Sounds to me like the move and promotion, within a company he's worked for, for a long time, are good decisions.  If it DOES turn out to be MS, he's got some support at his place of employment, where he's worked, they know him, they know what he's capable of, and they might make some allowances.
 
Good luck!
...I am not a doctor, nor health professional, and don't pretend to be one, here.....


tinydancer
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 9/5/2006 2:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Lorgirl,

I have ms also, and worked for myself. I no longer work because of the walking, standing, fatigue, I could go on and on about the problems that go hand and hand with ms. I made sure that I wouldnt loose my medical coverage first. So I check around to find health insurance that wasnt sooooo expensive. Being self employed the cost was 800 a month. In making calls to other insurances, they flat turned me down, told they could insure my family but not me. So what ever you do make sure you keep him covered.

I filed for ssdi in april and was just approved in sept, but it takes 24 months to get medicare, so hang on to what you can. Im still covered under my husband.
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