Thursday, July 26, 2012

Continuing frustrations with the medical profession


Had an appointment with an ENT today.  When I made the appointment, they asked me which insurance provider I have.  I told them.  They said, "ok" and scheduled the appointment.  When I arrived at the appointment, I handed them my insurance card and they said "We don't accept that insurance. You'll have to pay in cash and then submit a claim and your insurance may or may not reimburse you."  

(It would be $140 for the visit plus whatever other charges they deem necessary for any extra procedures they might have to do.)

I was sooo MAD.  I told the lady, quite frustratedly, "Are you kidding me?  I can't afford this out of pocket right now.  That is something you should have told me when I made the appointment.  Cancel my appointment, I'm leaving.  This is really dumb."

Then I left.  She should be glad I didn't chew her out, which is what I was doing in my mind.

I'm just glad the appointment was in El Centro and not San Diego.


My voice does not work.  Simple as that.  I am so frustrated at people telling me I just need to practice more, or I just need to exercise my voice, or I'm just rusty, or I just have breathing problems.  Unless you are in my body, experiencing what I'm experiencing, you do not know.

Practicing. Doesn't. Help.  Exercising (my voice) doesn't help.  In fact, it often makes it worse.  The more I sing, the worse it gets.

My vocal problems began my junior year of college.  I have been in a steady decline since then.  I always wondered if it was because of a teacher that encouraged bad habits, but I don't think so.  Around 4 - 5 years ago, I saw an ENT in Beverly Hills.  I was getting hoarse during choir practice.  This doctor was great!  He put a camera down my throat and told me that I did not have any nodes, but my acid reflux was very bad.  I took medicine for that, and things seemed fine for awhile.  But these past two years have been miserable.

I KNOW I have post-nasal drip because it is often very hard to swallow, I feel like I'm choking.  I always feel like my throat is swollen, my lymph nodes are mildly swollen (according to a recent doctor who I saw for acid reflux).  OBVIOUSLY something is not right, yet the ENT in San Jose told me I didn't have sinusitis, nor was there anything wrong with my sinuses.

Still my voice continued to deteriorate.  My voice teacher at SJSU thought it was just technique problems and would be an easy fix.  But, obviously, it wasn't.   It's now to the point that I just can't sing.  I can't even do sirens.  It's as if there is a brick in my throat that stops the sound at a certain point.  I can push through that "brick," but that is not healthy and anyone listening can tell that it is dangerous to my voice to do that.

So here I am.  Sick and tired of doctors, sick and tired of being sick and tired...

Not sure where I found this...

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