Category Archives: health

>Lab Work Update

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Cakes ended up waking from her nap in a foul mood so I didn’t get the rest of my lab work done today for the miscarriage/clotting type stuff.  But hopefully tomorrow I can get that out of the way.  My primary care doctor’s office called saying they had received the results of my corated artery ultrasound and they came back normal (which I knew) and that based on that, the blood work they did, and the ophthalmologists report – I experienced an ocular migraine.  She asked if I had gotten my MRI because they hadn’t received it yet and I told her I had it schedule for Friday but they had closed their office, not notified me, and never called to reschedule.  I then asked if the doctor even thought it necessary I get the MRI since everything was indicating ocular migraines.  She said she’d ask the doctor and call me back.  She never has called back and I don’t expect she will.  I hate to say it but our care/satisfaction with medical personnel has been less than stellar since moving to Texas.  We never realized we had it so good in Colorado! 
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>The Results Are In

>Well, most of them anyway.  I got a call from the OB’s office today (although I guess maybe I should say GYN since I’m not exactly pregnant anymore/yet) saying that I needed to get more blood work.  You’re probably asking yourself, after six vials of blood two weeks ago why would you possibly need even more blood work?  That would be because the lab failed to complete two of the six tests that were ordered.

One of the tests, Factor V, I already told you about that came back negative.  None of the others had been uploaded to the patient portal so I didn’t know they had come back yet until the receptionist called.  (Again, do you see why I don’t care for this office?  Administratively they leave much to be desired.)  While on the phone with the receptionist I asked what test had come back and the results.  The tests that did come back were the biggies (in my mind) and the ones I could remember the names of.  All of the tests – Lupus, Proteins C & S, and Anti-Thrombin – all came back either negative or within normal range.  My Granny and at least one cousin we know of has Lupus so this was the one I was most worried about – whew!

So now I need to carve some time out of my week and throw my schedule off yet again to get these last two tests finished up.  The receptionist ensured me I don’t need to fast, so I’ll make sure to head over there are Cakes wakes up from her nap and hopefully avoid the fasting crowd of the morning hours.

>Snow Day 2011

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If you hadn’t heard, Texas got hit with some snow last night/this morning.  While I’m no stranger to snow, it’s not a pleasant sight.  Especially in Texas.  I moved to Texas for the warmth and sunshine (and my husband’s job) and to get away from the cold and snow.  This is not what I bargained for.  We’ve been here a little over a year and this is our third snow.  What gives?!  Global cooling maybe?  
At any rate, this is what I woke up to this morning.  While we were watching TV last night schools were already closing down and it wasn’t snowing yet.  It wasn’t flurrying, there was no precipitation but the 60% chance of snow caused almost all of the surrounding school districts to shut down.  Then, after our whopping 3/4 of an inch this morning, most of the city shut down.  I’ve lived all over but consider myself from Colorado and this is such a joke!  I’ve been taking every chance I can to let all of my family and friends know of Blizzard Watch 2011!  

My MRI was scheduled for this afternoon at 5:30.  I headed to my appointment not thinking anything of it but noticed the incredibly light traffic.  Too light.  Surely the office would have called to let me know if they were closed and my appointment needed to be rescheduled.  I was about half way to the appointment and decided to call the office just to make sure before getting all the way there.  The phone rang way too many times and voicemail never picked up so I figured my suspicions were right.  I was running late anyway since I decided I had time to go grocery shopping before my appointment only to find out that everyone was grocery shopping (snow day or Super Bowl?) so I decided to keep heading towards the radiology office.  I called my husband and asked him to look at the website of the facility just on the off chance they had updated that.  They had.  Ugh, I was almost to the office and had to turn around and head home.  A 45 minute waste of time.  Boo for me not checking ahead of time, but again common courtesy would have dictated a call to notify me.  It looks like I’ll be going for an MRI next week instead.  Time to put the belly button ring back in again before it closes up.

>Ocular Migraines

>Ocular migraines, ever heard of them?  I hadn’t either.  Until today.  I signed off of here earlier last night because I got a headache that just was not going away and I was starting to get dizzy from focusing on my laptop.  I watched some TV (Biggest Loser), took a bath, and went to bed.  I woke up this morning with a lesser version of the headache.

About an hour after waking up, I started getting these circles that would flash and stream across my vision and out into the periphery.  I checked each eye to see if only one of them was doing it but they were both doing it.  Then, the flashes started getting worse and worse.  At first I only got off my laptop, then I shut off the TV, closed the blinds and started at myself in the mirror trying to figure out what was going on.  I didn’t have any eye trauma recently and my headache surely couldn’t be the cause of this.  Or so I thought.  I started doubting my ability to care for Cakes and the implications of this vision thing so I called my husband and asked him to come home.  He told me to schedule an appointment with our primary care doctor and he’d take me when he got home.  From the time the flashes started and my vision started blurring until they ended it was between 15 and 20 minutes.

I went to the PCP who said she thought I was experiencing ocular migraines.  She called me in a prescription of Imitrex and gave me orders to see have an ultrasound done of my carotid artery, an MRI to check for any vascular problems or tumors, and a referral for an opthamologist exam.  Since my husband was already working from home for the day I decided to try and get everything scheduled for today if it was possible.

I managed to schedule the ultrasound and MRI appointments back to back for 45 minutes from when I called.  On my way to the appointment, the scheduling office called to update me saying they hadn’t received a pre-authorization from my insurance yet for the MRI but they were still working on it and to keep my appointment.    I made it to the office on time (they have you arrive 30 minutes early for paperwork that takes 5 minutes, but isn’t that how it always is?) and while filling out the paperwork someone from the billing department came over to tell me they hadn’t received the pre-auth yet and I’d need to reschedule the MRI.  I told her about the call from scheduling on the way over and asked if there was anything I could do to speed up the process.  She suggested calling my doctor’s office (the one requesting the exam) and following up with them.  When I called, the receptionist said they were already working on it but the doctor was busy and they’d have to get back to me.

The ultrasound wen very smoothly and the tech didn’t see any problems there.  She also told me that she had two ocular migraines in the past as well and they scared her just as much.  Before taking me back for the MRI, she checked to see if the pre-auth had been received yet and it hadn’t so I was asked to reschedule.  I rescheduled for Friday evening when my husband would be off work but I’d still have to fight rush hour (the alternative was tomorrow night at 8:30 – no thanks) and then headed home.

On my way home I decided there was still a couple of business hours left in the day and I’d try scheduling my opthamologist appointment.  I scheduled my appointment but when getting directions found out the doctor had not given me the number of the referral we talked about that was only 3 miles away, but instead gave me one that was 20-something miles away.  I went ahead and made the appointment but was getting ready to call my doctor’s office again when the nurse called me.  She said they had received the pre-auth and wanted to know when my appointment was and where to send it.  I told her the appointment had to be rescheduled because it should have started 20 minutes ago and gave her the updated information.  I also told her about the opthamologist office and asked for the referral that I was supposed to get.

When I got home I talked to my husband and decided that regardless of when the doctor’s office called back, I wasn’t going to go to the referral that was so far away.  I called and canceled (to a not so thrilled receptionist, even though she knew I thought her office was located elsewhere) with the opthamologist’s office and as I was hanging up, the nurse called back again.  She gave me the correct information and said she was faxing the referrals for the MRI then.  Apparently this office does not have a sense of urgency (another reason we have considered switching PCPs).  The opthamologist’s office asked me to come right over for the exam and although I was there for an hour (including vision and glaucoma testing, as well as pupil dilation) I got the all clear that my eyes were looking just fine and the opinion that I was having ocular migraines and did not need to be seen again (or in her opinion require an MRI).

If I thought my blood work last week through my day off, this completely flipped my world upside down.  I didn’t get anything done today and felt guilty for all of this testing for something that’s going away on it’s own (well, with a little help from Excedrin).  Hopefully tomorrow will end up the way I envisioned today, filled with productivity and not leaving the house!

>Off My Routine

>I feel the day has completely gotten away from me and I’m so behind on everything.  Yesterday, I went to the doctor under the impression I’d be getting blood work done.  Apparently, last time I was there the correct information was not entered into their system, and my appointment got listed as a preconception appointment.

Last week was when my original appointment was scheduled but the doctor was out and so I had to reschedule to this week with the midwife (even though their office canceled I would have had to wait another six weeks to get back into see the doctor). And really if you’re just getting lab orders, what does it matter who writes them?  Cakes did really well while we were in the waiting room and had a fascination with seating in each of the chairs and pointing out different pieces of art.  When we got called back for the appointment, she completely flipped out when I put her down to get weighed.  She kept this up until we got in the room, then freaked out again when the midwife walked in.  The midwife didn’t want to scare her so she kept her distance and ending up laying on the exam table while we talked.  This helped but I don’t know why she did that.  My only thought is maybe she’s associating doctor’s offices with getting her ears probed (which she hates)?

The appointment started out with the midwife asking how long ago I miscarried and if we were interested in trying again.  I told her it had been six weeks and that yes (obviously), we wanted another baby.  She said since I had already completed one cycle and my “clock had reset” that we could go ahead and start trying again now.  When she asked if I had any questions, I told her I was a little confused by this because it contradicted what the doctor had told me at my last appointment which was to wait two cycles.  I told her I was supposed to be getting blood work at this appointment and wanted to talk about what they were looking for and what that might mean.

The midwife had no idea what I was talking about and left to go get my chart (why it was still in the hall, I don’t know).  When she returned she said she took back what she said and that I should wait until after my next cycle before trying to get pregnant again.  She gave me the paperwork for the tests and briefly explained they’d be looking for reasons my body might be throwing mini clots.  They don’t know that I have a clotting disorder at all (or if I do, what would be causing it) but they want to rule that out because a clotting disorder could explain my abruption with Cakes and miscarriage last month.  The midwife told me they don’t expect to find anything and that if the results are normal I’ll be able to see the results on their patient portal in a few days but if they were abnormal I’d need to schedule with one of the doctors because “if you schedule with one of the midwives we’re going to be like, what?  And not know what to do.”  I’m already not feeling super confident about this practice and to hear things like that doesn’t help matters.  Basically, she said it’d be a wait and see type thing but most clotting disorders can be controlled with baby aspirin or blood thinners.  We finished up and she sent me over to the M.A. to get my blood drawn.  The M.A. said they were unable to do this type of testing in their office and directed me to another lab (upstairs) because they didn’t have the right type of tubes or a freezer (testing for coagulation?).

The doctor’s office/lab is about 20 miles from my house so I figured I’d try getting everything done at one time and Cakes and I headed upstairs.  I’m shocked that there’s no line and start feeling confident they can get me in before finding out that I have to fast for 10-12 hours before they can draw blood.  So this morning after getting dressed and giving Cakes breakfast (she gets car sick on an empty tummy), we headed back to the lab.  I waited a little while before heading over there (they open at 7) thinking that people would stop in on their way to work or want to get the blood work over and done with as early as possible so they could eat and get on with their day and that if I waited there wouldn’t be that many people there.  I was so wrong – the waiting room was packed (I counted 14 other people) and I expected to be there a long, long time.

Fortunately, we didn’t have to wait very long at all.  Cakes wasn’t quite restless yet and was eating Goldfish and reading a book when they called us back.  I put her down so I could sit in the chair for the blood draw and she flipped out again.  Big ole tears were rolling down her faces and she kept saying bye.  I got out my phone and started playing a Sesame Street movie (Abby in Wonderland, I think) and tried talking to her while I was sitting there.  I was sitting there a little while because they took seven vials (although they were smaller) of blood.  Cakes had calmed down by the time we were done (the other patient said something about separation anxiety while we were there) and was saying goodbye to everyone she saw along the way!

I usually hate getting my blood drawn (I still do) but part of it is the environment it’s being drawn in.  The entire building is newer and this office didn’t have the same type of feel as the strip mall type labs but was warmer and more welcoming.  And the staff seemed much more professional from the receptionist to the phlebotomist.  Hopefully the glucose challenge test will be a little less painful if I get it done in that office.

So there ya have it – the reason my day is off.  Cakes is down for a nap now and I’m hoping she takes a longish one so I can feel somewhat good about my accomplishments for the day.

Does this happen to you?  One change to your routine and it throws your day completely off track (or at least, make you feel that way)?

>2-Year Well Child Check

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Cakes had her 2 year WCC (well child check) this morning.  It’s two weeks late but we were out of town and I like to have the doctor do all of her visits for consistency.  And because I like her so much better than everyone else in the office.  Cakes is doing great!  She’s in the 92nd percentile for height at 36 inches and the 80th percentile for weight at 29.4 pounds!  They stop checking head circumference at the 18 month visit so I don’t know what that is.  Her soft spot still hasn’t quite closed all the way but the ultrasound in June made the doctor feel better about it being a normal variance and that there wasn’t some medical reason for it not closing.  But it has gotten smaller so she’s just going at her own pace.  
The only issue we had at the appointment was her ears.  The doctor took a peek at them and they were both red, infected, and fluid-filled.  She could not believe Cakes hadn’t shown any symptoms of something being wrong (fever, runny nose, diarrhea, fussiness).  The doctor mentioned that she has been a relatively healthy girl with not very many visits and that this was only her third ear infection ever.  The office called in a prescription (which I already started her on) and she’ll go back in 2 weeks to have her ears checked.  The office was out of flu shots so the doctor wrote me a prescription to take to HEB to get it but they only had pre-filled syringes and not the dosing that Cakes needed.  Luckily, when we got home their office called me back saying they were ordering more and would get me a dose if she stilled needed it.  
So there were no shots at this appointment, but when we go back, Cakes will have the flu shot and her last Prevnar shot.  Then, she won’t need any more shots until she’s 4 and won’t need another WCC until she’s 3.  That’s good news for me!  These first two years have been filled with more needles than I would have liked but at least she’s protected!
We’ve been truly blessed that Cakes has overcome her prematurity and is thriving (and growing) so much!