Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Bubble Brain Blues - I Got Em (Updated- No I Do Not Have An Aneurysm!)

08/21/2019 EDITED TO ADD UPDATE:

GOOD NEWS: WENT TO DOC AGAIN TODAY FOR MY BP, TO DISCUSS THE ANEURYSM AND TO GET A RECOMMENDATION FOR A NEUROSURGEON. THE DOC I SAW ORIGINALLY, WHO'S NURSE TOLD ME I HAD AN ANEURYSM WAS OUT SO I SAW ANOTHER. SHE TOLD ME THERE IS NO ANEURYSM! SHE SHOWED ME THE CTA REPORT - NO EVIDENCE OF AN ANEURYSM! SHE GAVE ME UPDATED PRESCRIPTIONS FOR MY BP MEDS WHICH OTHER DOC HAD REALLY SCREWED UP! I LEFT QUITE HAPPY BUT BEFORE LEAVING THEIR OFFICE, I ASKED TO SPEAK TO THE NURSE WHO GAVE ME THE WRONG INFO (AND REMEMBER SHE SAID THE DOC SAID THERE WAS DEFINITELY AN ANEURYSM BUT HE CONSULTED WITHA CARDIOLOGIST WHO SAID TO DO NOTHING. WELL, THE NURSE WAS CONVENIENTKY TOO BIUSY TO SEE, THE RECEPTIONIST TOLD ME SHE IS DOING EXTRA DUTY OF PATIENT NOTIFICATION THAT DOC NORMALLY DOES WHEN THERE. MAYBE SHE MIXED UP RECORDS! I FEEL SORRY FOR ANYONE THEY MAY HAVE GIVEN MY RESUKLTS TO MISTAKENLY, MAYBE SOMEONE WITH AN ANEURYSM ON THE AORTA.

SO SORRY TO  GET YOU ALL CONCERNED OVER NOTHING BUT I MUST SAY I APPRECIATE THE GOOD THOUGHTS SENT MY WAY. THANKS VERY MUCH! GB

A few months back I had a couple incidents of losing my balance, did not think much of it since I have neuropathy from radiation treatments back when I had throat cancer. Then I started to have some vision problems, I was seeing white flashes of light but only when on my using my laptop. I had at first thought it was from the laptop but after it happening several times I realized it was my eyes. Then I started to get infrequent headaches, again something I have had before and I figured or should say hoped they were from me getting and achy and stiff neck at times also due to radiation treatments from way back when. Thing was these were different, more like ones I had in 2016 when I was diagnosed as having had cerebral ischemia that being in the form of a transient ischemic attack (TIA or mini-stroke) and as having cerebral infarction (necrotic brain tissue due to a stroke) - both things considered minor at the time - just pain the the arse stuff (or should I say pain in the neck & head).

When I drove down to AR in June, I saw what amounts to visions - no not like demons or gods - of auras colored around the edges floating in my field of view; this with both eyes open, or one or the other closed or even when both were closed. This concerned me but it all went away and I figured maybe it was due to the stress of getting separated, leaving other family behind, selling the house, moving to AR and on and on. Thing is it all came back maybe weeks or a month later except for the balance loss. Headaches were and remain much worse this time around.

I went to see a family or general practitioner (henceforth 'the doc'). He sent me to an eye doctor and to get a CT scan of the brain. He also called in for an additional amount of my BP med to increase the dosage for me BUT I found out later that he gave prescription for a different medication in amount of 40 pills (when I had told him only to use mail order if it was 90 pills - three month supply). Never explained or discussed any of that with me about the new drug, what dose to take, whether or not to discontinue either of my other BP meds or anything about it.

Well, I got the CT scan last Monday at local hospital. On Tuesday I went to the eye doc. Eye doc said I have blood vessel damage in back of each eye most likely due to very high blood pressure over the long term or to BP spike over the long term. He also said that my high BP is the probable cause of my vision problems and my headaches. On Friday, I called 'the doc' to ask what were the results of my CT scan. His nurse calls me back after business hours to tell me they suspect I have a aneurysm and need to get another test, a CTA Scan, BUT they have to call my health insurer to see if they will pay. I told her no preauthorization is needed and she said they were not seeking preauthorization just if my plan would pay for it. I told her my symptoms were worse and I asked her about the BP med prescription and asked what to do to avoid making things worse. She told me to avoid any strenuous activity that would raise my blood pressure. I wanted to ask under what circumstances if any I would need to go to an ER. Somehow the call ended without further info. I guess because it was later Friday afternoon. Life went on and my headaches that started on Friday evening blossomed into a winner over this weekend and continues somewhat lessened as I type on late Tuesday night. Wow a five day headache!

Yesterday, I called 'the doc's' office and left a message, at about 0906, for the nurse asking if the CTA scan had been approved by my insurer. She called me back at about 1018 and told me yes it was okayed and that she had made an appointment for me to have the scan done. I had to wonder when she was going to call had I not made my inquiry. The test was scheduled for 1330 and she told me to be there at 1300.

I got there a few minutes early. I checked in, the receptionist for outpatient had my name illegibly scribbled on a sheet of lined paper; she had to ask me to spell it for her so she could write it on that same sheet legibly.  Then she sent me to a waiting area. After about five or ten minutes a woman called my name, then she asked my for the order from 'the doc's' office because they had failed to send it. I explained to her they told me 'the doc' or his nurse had arranged for everything, she said that is usually the case but they had not sent the order and she would have to call them. Maybe another ten or 15 minutes at most went by and another woman called me inside to register me. Then off to wait for the test another five or ten minutes. Then the test which the tech told me she had to redo because something had been positioned wrong and she only scanned the very top of my head (with radiation I must say I did not need), the first time around! Then it was finally done.

Today, I called 'the doc's' office and again left a message for his nurse asking for the test results and such. She called me back about an hour and a half later to tell me the diagnosis. Here is how things went from there:

The aneurysm was been verified. Doc had his nurse call me, but only after I made my inquiry, to tell me it is an aneurysm and to say that he had consulted with a cardiologist. The nurse said the consensus between 'the doc' and the cardiologist was to do nothing. Then the nurse told me 'the doc' wanted to know what was the ophthalmologist's solution to all this (remember 'the doc' sent me  for a CT scan and to and to see this particular ophthalmologist, in fact 'the doc' made the appointment for me and then, a week after that, he made an appointment for the CTA Scan, because I have been having bad headaches and vision problems and a couple of episodes of losing my balance). Why did he not call the ophthalmologist if the eye doc had not called 'the doc' with the results of the eye exam!

I should mention, in today's call, the nurse told me nothing about my BP or about my request for a BP med prescription that, in an earlier call, I had told her he seemingly got wrong last time I saw him. Nor did she ask if my symptoms had worsened since I last left info on that in my earlier message for the doc. Somehow the call was over before I could ask more. Odd now that I think of it, and it only  now crossed my mind, nothing was said by the nurse of my prior cerebral ischemia or cerebral infarction in the results of either of the recent scans - did they miss that, I mean I don't think evidence of those things just disappear! 

So what was my reaction to her call? Bing-bing-bing, whooping siren sounds, loud whistles - all going off after the nurse said what she said 'the doc' had told her to tell me and also since she did not mention my BP or ask if my symptoms had worsened since she spoke to me last Friday! Those bells, sirens and whistles were also going off because apparently, 'the doc' never got word back from the eye doc and never bothered to call him to ask about my visit there and for his findings. The eye doc had told me, I have broken blood vessels at back of both eyes most likely due to very high blood pressure over a long term or very high BP Spikes over the long term and that is probably also causing the headaches and vision issues. Why 'the doc' did not call the eye doc to get his diagnosis and why 'the doc' consulted with a cardiologist instead of a neurosurgeon is beyond me. As I mentioned, I have some experience with headaches of this nature wherein I was diagnosed as having cerebral infarction caused by cerebral ischemia, that was back in 2016. I had to see either a neurologist or neurosurgeon back then - not a cardiologist.

What to do? I consulted with and RN at Blue Cross FEP. I gave all of my symptoms to the RN and told him about the recent visits for medical attention for these issues. He told me a neurosurgeon is the type of doctor to consult with about an aneurysm of the brain, and made it clear to me that a cardiologist was not the doctor to consult about an aneurysm in the brain which seems to agree with my care back in 2016. He also said, I can consult a general practitioner type or a cardiologist about my high BP. Tomorrow, I'm going to make an appointment to see a neurosurgeon as soon as possible and to also see a cardiologist. Oh how I wish I was in NY to do all this - medical care and practitioners there are much more abundant than here.

Meanwhile, my current headache has been ongoing since Friday evening - a new record for me and it's not like I routinely have had headaches throughout my life but it is seemingly becoming a routine as of late.

I also need to see a lawyer ASAP to have my will changed, someone who should not be named is the main beneficiary of that and of my life insurance. Damn, I am The Great Procrastinator - we've been separated for over two months and still have not done those two very important things. I really want to leave all my money equally split between my son and my grandson (my daughter's son - and I hope she understands that is a good thing), and all of my guns, ammo and personal belongings to my son to do with as he see fit.

I kinda, sort of, more or less feel like the WW(ofthe)W when she said: "I'm melting - melting. Oh what a world, what a world...".

This sucks but I hope to get through it. Just in case I do not, allow me to say: My life's been extraordinary so far, at least in good part thanks to my readers here and of course due to all my friends and mostly due to my family. I hopefully will keep you informed.

All the best,
Glenn B

PS: If anyone is wondering why I wrote this here on my blog, it is a record of the goings on with my medical care for the lawyers should something go wrong and is a record for the lawyers as to what is my last will and testament. And yes, I am definitely still of sound mind.

6 comments:

Secesh said...

I'm sorry to hear about your health problems, I hope things turn out well for you.

skybill said...

Hi Boomer!!!,
I'm with ya'buddy!!!! keep us posted on the out come!! I'm 74 years old myself now and between "Arthur Ridas" and all his siblings hacking at me I feel lucky that I can still walk .... never mind running!!! any distance!!
At least I can still "Raise a glass and toast our 'GOOD HEALTH'!!!" what ever that is??
skybill
ps... Prayers... for both of us!!!

Sarthurk said...

Well Doo Dah! This is not joyful news. I wish the best for you.
The thing that bothers me, is the similarity in symptoms I have. But most of my problems are cervical and sciatic spine issues. I get what seems like severe headaches, but what they really turned out to be, are severe muscle spasms in the scalp due to upper cervical spinal stenosis and disc deterioration.
The bottom line is that I'm all busted up and wore out. I'm glad I got a desk job.
In a couple of years when I retire, I hope I can still operate that pontoon boat and fly rod.

Cheers,
Steve

riverrider said...

good luck my friend. been going thru some of the same crap. hang in there.

Jesse in DC said...

Good luck with all of this. I will say a prayer for your swift and complete recovery

"Zack" said...

WHEW!!!