Wednesday, February 4, 2009

An Apple a Day

I'm resisting the urge to make a doctor appointment.

The irritating bronchitis is still sapping my energy. Also, in the past two weeks I have had three episodes of seeing strobing, crescent-shaped lights or patches of static. These visual disturbances hang around for around 25 minutes from the buildup to when I can finally see normally again. This, as you can imagine, is not very helpful when I'm trying to work. I need to be able to READ THINGS. And see people. You know, the basics.

I checked with Dr. Google, and found that the most likely cause is something called acephalgic migraine, which means you get a migraine aura without any headache. That's not too bad, compared to what people with actual, serious migraines go through. I couldn't see any mention of treatments. I think it's one of those "just live with it" things.

Then again, there's a minute chance that it could be an indication of something more serious.

So, do I bother going to my doctor? Take a whole half-day off work to sit in his waiting room for an hour so I can talk to him for five minutes? He'll probably tell me that I should get more rest, and take an expectorant for the bronchitis. Then he'll tell me that the migraine thing isn't anything to worry about and I should just make sure to stay hydrated and eat a balanced diet. Then I'll leave feeling like I totally wasted my time.

Of course, if I don't go, there's that one in a million chance that I'll be sorry I didn't. As my good friend Logan pointed out, always there to reassure me, it could be a tumor pressing on my optic nerve or something. Seriously, someone I work with has a sister going through chemotherapy for that exact problem. It happens!

I would say that 85% of the time when I've consulted with doctors they've been completely unable to help me (or at least unwilling to investigate my complaints further). For example, I used to suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome. My doctor said "live with it". Then I got a naturopath, and the naturopath cured me. Take THAT, allopathic medicine!

I suppose I could go see my naturopath... but he's in my old neighbourhood where I lived 13 years ago, and it's a huge pain in the butt to take public transit all the way to his office. Especially when I'm still so fatigued all the time. I'm too tired to get help for being tired - does that make sense?



Aurora said...

Reading and seeing things are pretty crucial!! It sounds like your symptoms are intruding on your daily life, so a doctor should have something to say about that.

Sabrae Carter said...

Visit a neurologist and an eye dr. :)

LL Cool Joe said...

I can't give you any sensible advice because I stay far far away from doctors.

And if a friend of mine scared the crap out of me by saying it could be cancer, I'd stay far far away from them too!

I hope you better real soon, whatever you decide to do.

Anonymous said...

There are lots of visually impaired people in this world who probably think that seeing things isn't the most important thing in the world. But they've probably spent lots of time getting used to not seeing things.

I would skip the doctor and the naturopath and try something completely different. So far, seeing doctors and naturopaths have been working on you and look where you are now. Try something completely different. Visit a voodoo priestess. Here's my rationale, they won't make things any worse AND you're enemies will have stabbing backpains or burning sensations. So, even if you don't feel better, people you don't like will feel worse.

Warped Mind of Ron said...

Hmmmm.... "WhatIgotsofar" has some valid points. If it persists I say a professional. I sometimes get these squiggly patches of vision that float around and generally makes it difficult to read, but mine proceed the actual migraine that hits a bit later. Hope you feel better soon.

Anonymous said...

You'll be fine. Don't worry about it.

Dianne said...

too tired to get help for being tired - oh do I empathize with that!!

but if you can see a doctor then do it - as frustrating as they are - I always avoided docs - and now that I can't afford them I realize their worth

Sparkling Red said...

Aurora: I'm thinking I'll start by asking one of the doctors I work with. Sometimes I forget that I have that obvious option.

Sabrae: I'd better take your advice. You're a medical professional! :-)

LL Cool Joe: Aw, that friend was just joking. He was quoting Kindergarten Cop to me. I don't truly think there's any chance I have brain cancer. My migraine aura is totally classic - it could hardly be anything else.

WIGSF: I dunno. I draw the line at drinking the blood of sacrificial goats. I once saw a real voodoo ceremony on TV and it was frickin' SCARY!

Ron: I didn't know you get migraines. Not too frequently, I hope?

Thank you, Dr. Unsigned. ;-)

Dianne: I am so fortunate to live in Canada where everyone has access to health care. Even homeless people can get a health card, if they have a social worker at a shelter to act as a contact. The wait for some specialists can be 6-8 months long, but it's way better than nothing.

Nicole said...

Och - shucks :(!

Go see that Doc you mention in your comment and talk to him!
Or get your butt in the transit and see your "old" Doc.

Get well, girl!


Aurora said...

If it takes 6 months to see a specialist, then at least you don't have to worry about making time for it right now :-) it'll be summer before you know it!

Scarlet said...

A migraine aura?? I'd consult an exorcist and tell that "aura" to GET OUT!

I'm not a big fan of modern medicine or doctors. I eat, pray, love...and drink lots of red wine. Forget the apple; these are the things that keep the doctor away.

I hope you feel better soon!!

Claire said...

Oh sweetie, take care of you! That sounds really scary!


Kate said...

Get a bunch more sleep and then see how it goes. I was sick for three months with a sinus infection. And I had all kinds of fatigue/weird headaches/strange body happenings because I was so exhausted. I went to work, went home and went to bed, got up and did the same the next day and the weekends were all about sleep.

Keera Ann Fox said...

Bronchitis takes a bit to get over. A good expectorant is water. A good cough suppressant is honey. Warm one, add a tablespoon of the other.