Even Doctors Can be Dumb
I haven’t posted in months. You probably haven’t noticed. But let me tell you what I was up to.
We begin at the beginning. In 2010, I developed a constant, unceasing pain encompassing the entire right side of my body. No one had any idea what was causing it, but it wasn’t horrible so I followed my doctor’s advice to ignore it.
Skip to this past Thanksgiving, when after dinner I suddenly developed a totally debilitating pain in my left ribcage area. After two hours it went away.
Two hour unpredictable attacks gave way to 24/7 attacks by late March. An OB/GYN diagnosed me with uterine fibroids, and even though he insisted they weren’t causing my pain, he prescribed opiate painkillers that were effective but gave me the cognitive function of a bowl of jello. For most of April and May, I couldn’t drive myself places or accomplish any work.
In June, I was reassigned to an OB/GYN who specializes in robotic uterine surgery. She believed the huge fibroid pressing on my lower intestine was causing my pain. (The previous doctor had been reading my MRI backwards.) We scheduled surgery for September, this month.
Convinced since early spring my pain was real and so unusually severe for a legitimate reason, I thoroughly researched doctors in my region and came up with one I thought could be my own Dr. House. After a three month wait, I saw her in July. She diagnosed me with fibromyalgia and FODMAP sensitivity.
She laid out a plan to slowly rid myself of the pain that had been dominating my life for so long. Medication, dietary changes, walking, and restorative yoga implemented since July have led me to be pain-free and much more physically functional than I have ever been, even as a child.
I couldn’t eat without getting sick, but now I eat without incident. I could barely walk from my bedroom to my living room, but as of this week I can run two miles. I’ve been totally off pain killers for more than a month. My surgery is next week, and I can’t wait to heal up and truly be 100% for the first time ever. I can’t wait to find out what my body is capable of. CrossFit? A marathon?
My point in sharing this is to say no one knows your body better than you do. If doctors dismiss your complaints or act like they are simply an unsolvable mystery, don’t give up. There is a doctor out there somewhere who will believe you and can diagnose you. Advocate for yourself. Fight for yourself. It could radically change your life, or even save it.