I finally have an answer to my continuing hip problems. From a doctor who didn’t discount me because of my age.
A little history…I tripped and had a bad fall at the end of May.
Sadly, I was given a wrong diagnosis by an emergency room doctor. After weeks with no improvement, I saw my primary care who suspected something more serious was happening and sent me for an MRI and bone density test. She was right. The tests showed my bone density was fine but I had cracked my femur in two spots and torn my cartilage.
She referred me to one of Stanford Hospitals leading Orthopedic Surgeons, specializing in hips. He refused to see or treat me, simply because I was over 50! That pissed me off no end!
He passed me off to a different Stanford Orthopedist who treated me negligently. He just honestly, didn’t care about me. After demanding attention and answers to questions he didn’t want to discuss, he politely told me to find another doctor. Thanks for that advice doctor. I took it and left.
Last month I found an Orthopedic Surgeon who actually cares. Which is sadly, a novel experience. Rather than standing in the examining room, he sat across from me and looked at me as I spoke. He studied at all my past test results. Then ordered some new ones to see how the break was healing. He told me he was going to be brutally honest. Which I thanked him for, because I’d been getting the runaround for six months.
The verdict is when I fell, I flattened the cartilage in my hip. Crushed it. Cartilage doesn’t just puff back up. Once it’s gone, it’s gone. I am virtually bone on bone and need a hip replacement.
I have to be honest. I’m scared of the surgery. It sounds more extensive than I’ve ever endured. Hell, my bunion surgeries were some of the most excruciating experiences in my life.
He’s given me a Cortisone shot to see how long we can control the pain. He is simply stunned that during this whole process no other doctor gave me one to help with the pain.
It doesn’t matter that I’m 59. This outcome would’ve happened at any age, from my fall. That’s a small relief. What matter’s about being 59 is that I had to fight to get the care I deserved. Too many doctors didn’t care because of my age.
I’m still annoyed at myself for tripping. Silly, I know. That’s why accidents are called accidents.
Did I mention the earlier Orthopedic Surgeon appeared to be in his 50’s? This one is young, sharp as a tack and caring. I joked with him that I’m now more confident with doctors who look like Doogie Howser than Marcus Welby M.D. I’m not sure he knew who Marcus Welby was. But he recognized the name, Doggie Howser.
So the moral here is be your own medical advocate. Demand answers. Insist you are taken seriously. Keep getting opinions until you find a doctor you feel totally confident has your best interests at heart.
Pam and I were on another blab this week talking about Style For The Woman Over 50. The replay is here if you’d like to listen or watch.
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