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Elbow News - The Greenwitch's Garden

About Elbow News

Previous Entry Elbow News Sep. 15th, 2005 @ 02:15 pm Next Entry
I went to see the orthopedic surgeon about my elbow yesterday morning; Bunz came with me. He had some very interesting things to say.

For starters, my GP shouldn't have sent me to see him in the first place. He apparently breached some major point of medical etiquette by sending me to a new surgeon instead of to the surgeon who operated on it orginally. He also shouldn't have sent me to have an MRI, to a consultation with a sports medicine doctor, etc - he should have left that to the surgeon in charge of the case. Now, of course, this is all just the opinion of this particular surgeon - but as he's really the Ottawa equivalent of what the English call a "Harley Street expert" I rather think it nails the last nail in my GP's coffin. buttongirl, could you email me the name of your doctor so I can try to make the switch?

He also said that the only mistake that was made at the Civic at the time of my original operation was in telling me that I would have a 100% recovery. He said that with any other joint, that would have been the case; but that with elbows, by the time the bone has healed (6 weeks on average) the joint has seized, and the patient ends up with only the range of motion that I have (I can bend my elbow from almost straight to about 90 degrees but no further - and it's my right elbow, as well). Since my pre-operative talk was given by an intern, he may have been unaware of the difference between elbows and other joints. I'm mad about that - but I no longer have to worry about being a victim of a surgical malpractice, and I no longer have to worry about needing further surgery, both of which are HUGE FUCKING RELIEFS.

He took a look at my x-rays, and agreed that I do have some bone growth, which is a result of my osteoarthritis. He debunked my GP's pronouncement that my arthritis was pronounced 2 to 3 times beyond the stage it should be, but said it was exactly where it should be. He agreed that I need pain management, but as he's not taking my case on, he couldn't prescribe anything. He said the pain in the joint and in my wrist were normal, but that he didn't know why I was getting deep tissue pain as well.

So that's where I stand. I don't need surgery, I might follow up on massage therapy if FC's benefits will cover it, and I need to find a new doctor who will help me with serious pain management (none of this Tylenol 3 and a pain journal crap). It's nice to be less confused.
Feeling: relievedrelieved
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From:con_girl
Date:September 15th, 2005 11:49 am (UTC)
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But you are supposed to be able to get a second opinion and if my mom's treatment in Halifax is any example a GP working to make sure you get to stuff without jumping through innumeral hoops is a good thing.
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From:mythmaker999
Date:September 15th, 2005 11:57 am (UTC)
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Yes, and when I said to the orthopedic surgeon I saw yesterday that I wanted him to give me a second opinion since I was there, he was happy to do so and that is why he gave me all of the information above, about which I'm pretty happy.

My GP has a frustrating habit of sending me to experts who generally say, after a 6-month wait during which I worry a great deal about what horrible problem he seems to think I have, that he didn't need to send me to them and that he should have known that already. He also tried to refuse to refer me to my current psychiatrist, told me that my radiologist's report said that I had the level of arthritic damage of someone who was injured 10-15 years ago instead of 4 years ago (which, in fact, it doesn't), sent me to a sports medicine expert in his own office and then completely ignored his recommendations, etc, etc, etc...I'm really sick of having to argue with him every time I see him. He seems to feel that I'm more of a guinea pig than a patient.
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From:con_girl
Date:September 15th, 2005 12:58 pm (UTC)
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I understand much more clearly now. Good luck finding room with a good gp.
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From:finalcut999
Date:September 15th, 2005 01:35 pm (UTC)
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OUr GP isn't the best no sadly. I am glad though that we now know what to expect from your elbow and definetly happy that no more surgery will be involved. Took lots out of you and its likely that even more pain would resul from it.
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From:thesheryl
Date:September 15th, 2005 02:03 pm (UTC)
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It sucks that you still have pain but the rest of the things you've mentioned are pretty good! Nice to have that weight off your mind eh?
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From:mythmaker999
Date:September 15th, 2005 06:54 pm (UTC)
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OMG YES. I hate hospitals. The thought of impending surgery was very stressful, indeed.
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From:kmfda
Date:September 15th, 2005 09:02 pm (UTC)
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Sounds positive for the most part. I am sorry you are still hurting but one would hope the massage therapy, as well as the load off the mind, might help with that. *hugs* anyway.
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From:ilanikhan
Date:September 16th, 2005 04:49 am (UTC)
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Good News!
It's nice to see doctors tell the truth, even when they think it's not the happiest thing to hear. They'd never know that you'd rather live as you are than go through surgery again.
I suggest also considering physiotherapy. I found when I was really bad that the phsyio "fixed" me and the massage therapy improved my situation and prevented any further mishaps.

Best of luck finding a new GP.
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From:buttongirl
Date:September 16th, 2005 05:27 pm (UTC)
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Kagan is my DR at the same clinic.... I have no idea if he would take a referal from within the clinic, but I hope he will, he is lovely!
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