Widgets Magazine

Mar 3, 2014

Self-Medication

I've picked up another cold. I'm not really happy about that since all those Girl Scout cookies need to be delivered this week. I've always been a fan of self-medicating. It seems a little ridiculous to pay my $25 copay at the doctor's office just so they can tell me what I already know.

But I'm afraid that this time I messed that up! Remember when I told you a few weeks ago that I broke my finger? Well the first time I broke a finger and it looked just like this one was about 6 years ago. I wore a splint for several weeks given to me by my regular doctor, but when it was finally time to remove the splint, it had done nothing to repair the broken tendons. That meant I had to see a specialist and he put me in a plastic brace for another six weeks.

Fortunately, the repair worked that time and although I had a small permanent bump near the upper knuckle, I had full mobility and all was well. Flash forward to about 3 years ago. I broke another finger and it looked similar. "Mallet" finger is what it was called and I recognized that again it would need the plastic brace which fortunately I had kept. I called the specialist's assistant and he confirmed from the x-rays that the brace should work and he asked me if I remembered the protocol. Of course I did! Total inconvenience for 6 weeks! But I diligently wore the brace and when the time was up, my finger was healed perfectly and all was well.

So in January on the very first basketball practice, I had a ball pop off the end of my left pinky finger. The break looked similar and rather than have an  x-ray, I decided to save not only the specialist's copay, but my primary care doctor's fee as well. OK, I know what you are thinking. That was stupid!

You are right. It was stupid. But I wore the plastic brace for the entire 6 weeks and when I took it off, I was assuming the tendons would have repaired and all would be well. Except this time I had pain, and my finger just didn't look right. After a week of stewing about it, I decided it was time to call the specialist.

They got me in within a couple of days and after a quick x-ray the doctor told me it was time to schedule surgery. Actually it was way past time to schedule surgery. It should have been done in January.

So I will be out of commission for a couple of days next week while they put in some wires and stuff to hopefully fix the damage I've done to my finger.

I might have to rethink this self-medication thing after all.
This is going to cost me way more than a couple of copays!

5 comments:

Natalie Ockey said...

So sorry to hear about your surgery. I hope everything goes well. And thanks again for the Jazz tickets.

Marci said...

Oh yikes! I hope your surgery goes well and you are pain free soon! I wish doctors weren't so dang expensive, it makes it hard to decide to go in to see them!

Anonymous said...

Your co-pays are very small, why don't you see a doctor when you break a bone or finger? Here insurance is expensive Kaiser is the choice for most people but co-pays of $25.00 are almost non-existence unless one is working an excellent job and they pay for most of your health insurance, not the case for most people. We are old now and don't pay too much at all, our union is the reason for that, we take advantage of silver care and keep healthy, but they opened a billion dollar medical center (hospital) it is far away but our doctors went there, and we do tooooo..keep yourself healthy your health depends upon it & you have health insurance to boot.

Denise said...

Wow, so sorry. Praying for you.

LeAnn said...

Oh my, now I get the real story. I missed this post. I can tell that you don't seek out medical care for yourself very often. I am just catching up on your posts; so you are immediately in my prayers. You do need to take off a few more days than you think you should. That's my counsel and I am stickin too it.
Blessings and prayers for you.

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