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Thread: Do doctors really know what they're talking about?

  1. #1
    granniebj's Avatar
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    I'm starting to wonder. They seem to need a hundred tests, and still don't know whats wrong! Don't get me wrong. I love my doctor! Shes patient and kind. Its just that I don't have insurance, and now I'm in debt beyond belief! It started when I was 45 and had my first heart attack (without insurance). I did have insurance when I had a triple by pass, but it was amazing how much they didn't cover. I've had several major surgeries since then, all without insurance! Guess I'm just alittle depressed because it never seems to end. Now I'm dealing with all this pain from a sciatic nerve, and needing more tests (MRI). Hubby fell off a semi and hurt his back, and I'm almost resentful that workmans comp pays all his medical bills! Hes brought up the subject of how much this MRI is gonna cost. I know he prefers that I don't have it done, but I'm just tired of the pain! I once gave up all my meds because of his remarks about how much they were costing us...big mistake!
    Thanks everyone. Guess I just needed to vent!

  2. #2
    Super Member purplemem's Avatar
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    Grannie,
    I am in the same situation. My husband has medicare, but I have nothing. My medical bills are well over $100k. After having 30 blood clots in my lungs, weekly blood tests, ER, MRI's, etc., I am just where you are. I have disability but am waiting to get medicare. And yes, the bill collectors only want $25, but there are like 15 different ones and that multiplies fast. It is very stressful. I am waiting for coverage and praying another crisis doesn't happen.

  3. #3
    granniebj's Avatar
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    My hubby just got disability. I really feel for you! It seems like an endless pit! I sure hope you get some relief from your medical problems and win the lottery! Wouldn't that be great? Money isn't everything, but being able to pay your bills sure is a plus!

  4. #4
    Super Member donnajean's Avatar
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    I do have Medicare insurance. However, I don't always agree with the tests doctors want me to get. An MRI would probably show you have some disk issues, but what are you willing to do about it anyhow. I have had back problems for many years - siatica with pain going down my leg. I've learned that you have to keep the lower back muscles strong & bending & stooping in the garden really helps with this. I see you have a little girl. Picking her up is a no-no. Anything that puts more stress to one side vs. picking up with your knees bent & object directly in front of you will aggravate your back. Carrying a child on your hip will aggravate a back problem.

    Gyno doc gave me script for bone density test. My response is that I am not willing to take anything beyond the extra calcium & vitamun D, what purpose would the test be?

    Unresolved medical issues can really take a toll on you mentally as well, which lowers your immune system. Hope you get some relief without the MRI. Make sure you are drinking pleanty of water. That also helps my joint issues.

  5. #5
    Super Member grann of 6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by granniebj
    I'm starting to wonder. They seem to need a hundred tests, and still don't know whats wrong! Don't get me wrong. I love my doctor! Shes patient and kind. Its just that I don't have insurance, and now I'm in debt beyond belief! It started when I was 45 and had my first heart attack (without insurance). I did have insurance when I had a triple by pass, but it was amazing how much they didn't cover. I've had several major surgeries since then, all without insurance! Guess I'm just alittle depressed because it never seems to end. Now I'm dealing with all this pain from a sciatic nerve, and needing more tests (MRI). Hubby fell off a semi and hurt his back, and I'm almost resentful that workmans comp pays all his medical bills! Hes brought up the subject of how much this MRI is gonna cost. I know he prefers that I don't have it done, but I'm just tired of the pain! I once gave up all my meds because of his remarks about how much they were costing us...big mistake!
    Thanks everyone. Guess I just needed to vent!
    I have had sciatica since my middle son was born 44 years ago when the nurse gave me an intramuscular shot for the childbirth and it hit my sciatic nerve. I now know what I can and cannot do. I can't sit too long in one position or my toes go numb on that side. I have had x-rays & mri's, but they show nothing, of course. Nerve damage won't show. The doctor says there is no arthritis there and no tumor. So now I just suffer, sometimes worse than others. One thing I have learned, I have to keep moving. If I carry a child it is always right in the front with his legs straddling me. I can't be off balance. And when I sew I make sure I am getting up and moving around the room instead of just sitting in one spot for long periods. Good luck with your health issues; they are a "pain". :lol: :lol: Keep smiling!

  6. #6
    Super Member DA Mayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by granniebj
    I'm starting to wonder. They seem to need a hundred tests, and still don't know whats wrong! Don't get me wrong. I love my doctor! Shes patient and kind. Its just that I don't have insurance, and now I'm in debt beyond belief! It started when I was 45 and had my first heart attack (without insurance). I did have insurance when I had a triple by pass, but it was amazing how much they didn't cover. I've had several major surgeries since then, all without insurance! Guess I'm just alittle depressed because it never seems to end. Now I'm dealing with all this pain from a sciatic nerve, and needing more tests (MRI). Hubby fell off a semi and hurt his back, and I'm almost resentful that workmans comp pays all his medical bills! Hes brought up the subject of how much this MRI is gonna cost. I know he prefers that I don't have it done, but I'm just tired of the pain! I once gave up all my meds because of his remarks about how much they were costing us...big mistake!
    Thanks everyone. Guess I just needed to vent!
    What a difficult time for you, I know how you feel about medications, the cost and getting comments about them. Does your state have any kind of assistance for the meds? I know Iowa did, I am not sure if they do anymore, the home health agency helped people with the meds directly from the drug company. Have you contacted the drug company directly because many of them have programs for people who can't afford the medications.
    I would ask the Dr what the MRI is going to show and if it is worth it. Hope you get some relief soon. Did she suggest physical therapy? That is a lot cheaper than the MRI and maybe you would get relief from their treatments. I know my FIL did after having pain for months.

  7. #7
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    they just did a special on our local news station about the big differences in costs for tests. they gave an MRI as an example..hundreds of dollars in price differences...
    i am so sorry you are going through this..my friend has cancer with no insurance...

  8. #8
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    A Catholic friend of mine told me about a program through the Catholic church (open to all, not just Catholics) that will help with the cost of medications. I don't know if it also will help with testings or not, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to check this out, as well as checking with the pharmaceutical companies on your medications. If you get some of the medication costs covered, then the testing cost might be more 'doable' if you decide to go on and have it done.

  9. #9
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    My heart is really bleeding for all of you. In fact, it has brought the tears. I know what you are going thru as I am a diabetic, have neuropathy, sinus problems, spine problems, etc. It seems like it just keeps building up. Fortunately, I do have insurance as well as medicare, and I am worried about what the future holds for all of us. I have had a stroke, and I've had MRI's. That is a lot of stuff going into my body. I'm 78 years of age and hope to hit at least 99, but - will it be worth it?
    I love you all and will add all of you to my prayers.
    God bless all of you.
    Dodee

  10. #10
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    Do doctors really know what they're talking about?

    In answer - NO!!!

  11. #11
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    I know what you mean. I have several medical issues including FM and lupus. It took years of doctors and many tests to figure out what I have (what caused all the pain and exhaustion) and then to get the appropriate medical treatment. It seems that as soon as though a medicine starts to work, my body oveerides it, and I am back to the drawing board again.

    I do have insurance through my husband's job (thank the Lord) but I have had to leave my job after 22 years of working, and it has made finances very difficult for us. The disability insurnace people have dragged their feet, and I am still waiting to hear if they will approve me or not. I pray so!

    Any type of chronic problem is expensive. There are a lot of people who have it a lot worse than I do, and I am thankful for everything adn everyone I have. Having a disability really lets you know who are really your friends. They are the ones who stick around, and I am very careful not to complain around them. They can just tell if I am having a rough day.

    Iwill keep you all in my prayers, that better days are ahead, and that you will not need a lot more tests or expenses. I know how it is.

  12. #12
    Senior Member mawmawbeve_60's Avatar
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    I Have a sister in law...that is STILL going through test after test...she has had 3 back surgery's, her hands worked on ,her foot worked on..a pain thing out in her back,,,and Now they are thinking she may have MS...I think DR'S like experimenting myself..I Know she said her bills where outrageous, she got her Disability,,,but is on 10 or more meds....Ireally feel for her,,,she cant do much of nothing...I have a bad neck..and thyroid problems..and working on my Hormones...Bought me some Estriol the other day I use progesterone cream...and the estriol(estrogen) is already helping...i was having BAD arthritis in my hands....so I work on my hormones my self....or try..to expensive to run to Drs...who blood test u to death......hope u ladies get relief and know whats really wrong with you...Good Luck...

  13. #13
    Super Member seamstome's Avatar
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    Most of the testing is for profit and to CYA from lawsuits. A good doctor doing an excellent history and excellent physical examination will elicit as much or more information about the cause of the sciatica then the MRI will. However if you need the next step, no specialist will move forward without it.

    For non-insurance patients, you can get a lumbar MRI for about 600 bucks cash....be careful though because you do not want an open MRI for spine because of the clarity of the pics will miss lots of things.

    Not having insurance is a choice that alot of Americans have made because of the inequities in the system. Unfortuately, when you are sued for malpractice, if the patient did not have insurance and you opted not to do SOP, it does not shield you from a multi-million dollar verdict.

  14. #14
    Super Member oldswimmer's Avatar
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    My mother in law had a sciatic nerve problem. She didnt believe in doctors.... so she found a very good chiropractor. He took an xray first of her spine, to make sure he would not make anything worse or there wasnt something more serious. Then she started getting adjustments. At first she would hurt still, and he told her to ice it religously. Then after several treatments it started to feel good. She was able to walk and build up the muscles... eventually her spine stayed in place and her pain went away. I know there are alot of people that dont believe in Chiropractors, including me to begin with, but I went to this man after she had such great success. He was able to get rid of my hip pain that I had for years, and thought was a "getting older" thing. I am now to the point where I can tell when I need an adjustment, and it makes all the difference n the world for me. It would definitly be a less expensivie alternative.... but it takes some time.
    Mine took around 6 months of treatment... and yo start with more treatments, and gradually they become less.
    Sure hope you can find a way to get the help you need. I hate MRI's. My hubby has had several, and they dont always tell the Dr. anything.

  15. #15
    Mimito2's Avatar
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    I feel your frustration. I am blessed to have insurance but I feel that Doctors just throw a pill or another expensive test to get us out of the office. I have had migraines forever and in the process of testing was diagnosed with restless leg syndrome and sleep apnea. I then started passing out when I stood up or turned around suddenly. I was having my monthly all month and finally after 2 years and lots of meds (required by insurance) GYN Dr did hysterectomy. Then I start having vertigo. Referred to Ear Dr. He says iron level is 9. Want to guess what the symptoms of low iron are? Insomnia, restless leg, no energy, fainting and migraines. As for the vertigo he could find no cause and wanted me to do exploratory surgery on my throat. My sister insisted that I see her chiropractor. My neck bones were not moving and were putting pressure on my inner ear when I turned my head. 2 adjustments and vertigo is gone. NO pills or tests. I recommend an evaluation by a competent chiropractor. I don't know you all individually so I pray for all my new brothers and sisters here on the QB

  16. #16
    Senior Member auntbarb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by donnajean
    I do have Medicare insurance. However, I don't always agree with the tests doctors want me to get. An MRI would probably show you have some disk issues, but what are you willing to do about it anyhow. I have had back problems for many years - siatica with pain going down my leg. I've learned that you have to keep the lower back muscles strong & bending & stooping in the garden really helps with this. I see you have a little girl. Picking her up is a no-no. Anything that puts more stress to one side vs. picking up with your knees bent & object directly in front of you will aggravate your back. Carrying a child on your hip will aggravate a back problem.

    Gyno doc gave me script for bone density test. My response is that I am not willing to take anything beyond the extra calcium & vitamun D, what purpose would the test be?

    Unresolved medical issues can really take a toll on you mentally as well, which lowers your immune system. Hope you get some relief without the MRI. Make sure you are drinking pleanty of water. That also helps my joint issues.
    I agree--do some research--most disc problems will resolve in 6-9 months--why have an mri unless you are becoming paralyzed! Most docs order test because their atty wants them to

  17. #17
    Senior Member mosquitosewgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by granniebj
    I'm starting to wonder. They seem to need a hundred tests, and still don't know whats wrong! Don't get me wrong. I love my doctor! Shes patient and kind. Its just that I don't have insurance, and now I'm in debt beyond belief! It started when I was 45 and had my first heart attack (without insurance). I did have insurance when I had a triple by pass, but it was amazing how much they didn't cover. I've had several major surgeries since then, all without insurance! Guess I'm just alittle depressed because it never seems to end. Now I'm dealing with all this pain from a sciatic nerve, and needing more tests (MRI). Hubby fell off a semi and hurt his back, and I'm almost resentful that workmans comp pays all his medical bills! Hes brought up the subject of how much this MRI is gonna cost. I know he prefers that I don't have it done, but I'm just tired of the pain! I once gave up all my meds because of his remarks about how much they were costing us...big mistake!
    Thanks everyone. Guess I just needed to vent!
    I can walk you through some exercises that will help get rid of the sciatica pain if you want....

  18. #18
    Senior Member Sewze's Avatar
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    My DH had sciatic pain in his Rt. Leg....had an MRI and found that he needed both hips replaced. Had the Rt. one done first and then realized that the Lt. one was in terrible shape and had that one done 3 months later. He is 72 and works full time 10 hrs a day standing on his legs all day and was back at work after both surgeries in 3 wks. He feels great now and was able to help me when I had my rotator cuff and torn muscles in my arm & shoulder repaired.
    I hope & pray that you do not need surgery. You might consider going to a back & pain center for some steroid injections. DH did that for several months before he gave up and had the surgery......they did help, for awhile anyway.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Sewze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by auntbarb
    Quote Originally Posted by donnajean
    I do have Medicare insurance. However, I don't always agree with the tests doctors want me to get. An MRI would probably show you have some disk issues, but what are you willing to do about it anyhow. I have had back problems for many years - siatica with pain going down my leg. I've learned that you have to keep the lower back muscles strong & bending & stooping in the garden really helps with this. I see you have a little girl. Picking her up is a no-no. Anything that puts more stress to one side vs. picking up with your knees bent & object directly in front of you will aggravate your back. Carrying a child on your hip will aggravate a back problem.
    I agree.....I also ruptured a disc 38 yrs ago and then within 10 yrs. ruptured 2 more. I would not go thru surgery and instead just rested. I have found that I need to get plenty of sleep in order for my back not to be giving me signals that all is not going to go well, if I continue without the sleep for more that 3 days. It doesn't take much to rupture a disc.... the 1 st one I did when turning over in bed, the 2nd one-opening a window and the 3rd one cranking up a wheel.

    Gyno doc gave me script for bone density test. My response is that I am not willing to take anything beyond the extra calcium & vitamun D, what purpose would the test be?

    Unresolved medical issues can really take a toll on you mentally as well, which lowers your immune system. Hope you get some relief without the MRI. Make sure you are drinking pleanty of water. That also helps my joint issues.
    I agree--do some research--most disc problems will resolve in 6-9 months--why have an mri unless you are becoming paralyzed! Most docs order test because their atty wants them to

  20. #20
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    my friend had the sciatic nerve problem, and the only relief she got,was when she tried accupunture. she was desperiate for relief..(with no drugs,she needed to be able to function at work)

  21. #21
    Senior Member Rachel's Avatar
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    Have you considered chiropractic care. I know not every one believes in what they can do, but he's really helped me.

  22. #22
    Super Member hobo2000's Avatar
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    You should be able to go on disability and then you get Medicare. My friend had 2 heart attacks and Dr. said she couldn't work (she didn't anyway) he gave her a letter and it took 3 months now she receives disability payments and medicare. She is 49 yrs old. Good luck and God bless...

  23. #23
    Super Member seamstome's Avatar
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    Sciatica is one of the things we are best at as chiropractors but patients have some unrealistic expectations and have to realize that it's months not days to rehab sciatica. If you have problems with the cost of meds, you will have to understand that all therapies are expensive.

  24. #24
    Super Member Olivia's Grammy's Avatar
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    I am so very thankful for my health. My SIL is my doctor (for non naked things) He never charges me and gives me samples of what even he has. I've never had to pay for my Bonivia. My DD gets my sinus perscription filled for me and I pay her deductible. I have insurance, but it's $10,000 deductible. I am waiting for 65 so I can cancel my insurance. It's over $300 monthly and I've never used it. DH uses the VA hospital and gets better care and more treatments than when he had insurance. He has prostrate cancer.
    I do feel for those of you that are doing without and getting into debt bc of your illness.

  25. #25
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    What upsets me greatly is to hear of doctors who will not accept Medicare patients. What happened to their oath? Did they quit taking it?

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