Thursday 16 September 2010

Ultrasound Day

It’s yet another thoroughly demoralising day.  I handed over my £423 pounds for a (less than) 10 minute appointment this afternoon.  It amounted to a very very brief exam, which as expected showed no hernia, upon straining.  The doctor said that very rarely does anything show up on the ultrasound, which leaves me to wonder why I was there?


From his brief explanation I gathered the general thrust of what he was doing was putting a local anaesthetic into the area by the ilioinguinal nerve, in case it was causing  ‘irritation’.  So, “jab”, in it went and then he said I had 2-4 hours to exercise to try and produce the pain.  I wasn’t at all prepared for that (no sports kit, and middle of the working day).  I got up, paid, left and went back to work.  I had to beg and borrow some sports kit and go to the gym at work; loaned training shoes too big and rubbed the skin off my heels, shorts too big, and no T-shirt.  The Gym at work weren’t very happy about me using the facility whilst under a local anaesthetic, and running topless,  but were eventually persuaded when I convinced them I wouldn’t sue them if I collapsed.  I ran 5 miles and got the same pain as usual, and tried to do some situps, and got the same pain.


I didn’t for one second ever consider this nerve had been a serious contender for the problem, so if that’s all today was about then it feels like an utter waste of money, given the doctor there said the ultrasound would unlikely have shown anything up anyway (like a micro-tear).  Until I see the referring-consultant again, next week, I’ll have to give him the benefit of the doubt in case he had something else in mind.  The doctor today just said, usually you have to get surgery to address this anyway. 


So, I don’t think I’m any closer to knowing what’s wrong (though in all likelihood it’s a abdominal wall tear I imagine), other than ruling out that one pretty unlikely possibility and emptying my wallet further.  I think I’ve pretty much reached the end of the road of diagnosis, and surgery is the only thing that anyone can offer.  If that’s the case then I’d need to see if it can be done under a local anaesthetic (I won’t have a general), and also if it can be done on the NHS, as I can’t afford a private op.  If (big If) the answer was yes to both, I’d probably be looking at a 3-4 month wait for any NHS surgery, taking me beyond Christmas, and probably several months rehab.  I don’t the answer will be yes to both answers anyway, but we’ll see.


It’s over 6 months I’ve been out of action now, and there is absolutely no end in sight.

Tuesday 7 September 2010

Waiting game

As promised, an update.  I have an ultrasound appointment on 16th September.  Not with the doctor I wanted, who is unfortunately not available for the foreseeable future.  I hope the suggested doctor is as handy with the ultrasound machine.  My referral letter states Ultrasound +/- Diagnostic local anaesthetic injection. I'll be another £500 lighter afterwards, but this is really the last hope I have of any kind of diagnosis I think. I've been doing half an hour of exercises 4-5 times a week, as prescribed, providing a little focus to try and stop myself unravelling, which isn't easy at the moment.

Unlikely I'll have much to say before 16th, so take care until then.