Posted 10/5/2010 4:53 PM (GMT -7)
Thank you everyone. Straydog, yes...I am in Canada. There are huge wait lists in every province for most types of "elective" surgeries - i.e.: anything that isn't a life threatening accident. In my case in particular (I live in Calgary, Alberta) there are two surgeons in Calgary who do the type of surgery it's suspected I require. One of them doesn't have the respect of his peers and is never recommended because of some previous complications on cases that weren't handled well. The other one is a superb doctor, highly reguarded and so of course, supremely busy.
I spoke with his nurse when I called there one day, to find out if they had received my paperwork for a consultation. First off, my paperwork had never been received there, so that was a 3 month delay on it's own. Once the office had received everything, I was told that the doctor triages his own cases and picks and chooses which ones he wants to work on - so there's no numerical lineup of patients. Maybe Patient Pam has a particular hip problem, but Patient Bob has the same thing, with an extra twist. Maybe this doctor has been doing lots of surgeries like I need as a teaching method for students...and now he's going to spend the next month on a DIFFERENT type of problem.
What I'm saying is I am at the mercy of a doctor's whims and when you consider the hundreds of people with hip problems who need this type of expertise and the wait becomes longer and longer and longer.
Now, let's say I want to go to a different province for treatment, because they can get me in faster. Well, my province has to give the okay first, because they'll have to do a transfer of the costs from one province to another, and things just don't work that way. The government feels that you should wait for the care in your own province, because it's a huge hassle to do things in a more logical manner. The same with if I wanted to come to the States and seek care at the Mayo Clinic for example. I can't just pay cash in my province for my medical care...no money exchanges hand for doctor visits or hospital stays...you just have to stay alive long enough to get fixed.
As for my Pain Centre doctors - they aren't there to "fix". Their role is to give patients all the tools they need to manage chronic pain. That might mean drugs or physio or surgery or what have you. If they do recommend surgery for something, they don't really have any extra pull to get you into a specialist any faster....they can try, but realistically, it doesn't work like that. So, since they all seem to think my crappy hips have a lot to do with my pelvic pain...well, I guess we'll just leave you to your family doctor and whatever surgeon you're trying to see. I was told that after the surgery was done, and if I was still having pain, I would be welcome to reapply for a short stint again at the Pain Centre, but really and truly, they wouldn't have anything new for me.
Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh.....I"m sorry if I sound bitter. Everyone goes on and on about the Canadian Health Care system and what an example it is for other countries to follow, but the reality is that it takes forever to see doctors and specialists and in some instances, there are family doctors who just aren't accepting new patients. I can opt for private care if I want to pay for it, but I don't have that kind of money.
So....I wait and ponder and look at other options....all the while my hip just wearing away a tiny bit more...and a tiny bit more...and a tiny bit more....
DX: Fibro, Severe Myofascial Pain, Chronic Pelvic Pain, Surgical Adhesions, IBS, IC-PBS, Carpal Tunnel (both wrists), FAI, Reynauds, Opthalmic Migraines, Drug Related Hot Flashes, Physically Unable to Vomit due to Nissen Surgery, Extremely tiny and scarred veins (hard start for IV's)
Meds: Oxycontin, Tramacet, Cymbalta, Cesamet, Flexeril, Clonidine plus Vitamin D + Multi daily