Parkinson’s parent – a personal guide

April 30, 2016 at 11:51 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments
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Bearing down.

Bearing down.

I’ve been told it may help clear my mind to write this out.

And that it may even help other people with Parkinson’s – as well as their carers.

While I find this hard to imagine, the suggestion comes from a reliable source.

You, of course, will know in a trice if it’s of interest.

Wim Report 13/07/11

Note: This report has been produced at speed and under work deadline pressure. Please forgive any typos.

Legend

Dr P = New GP.

Dr S = Old GP.

Dr G = Cardiologist.

W = Wim (Patient. But not very.)

P = Paul (Son & primary carer.)

BPM = Blood pressure monitor.

Parkinson’s

P and W asked Dr P for more ‘scientific’ evidence of Parkinson’s (e.g. MRI scan).

Dr P said that’s not how you diagnose it.

He said that, from his tests and W’s symptoms, he was 90% certain of his diagnosis.

W then accepted the diagnosis.

Dr P then offered to start treatment (i.e. medication) to reduce W’s symptoms (e.g. shuffling, falls).

W said he’d rather wait and see.

P asked W if he was still knocking over his beer glass most nights.

W said he wasn’t and that that wasn’t a symptom of Parkinson’s – merely a coincidence.

Dr P suggested another appointment in a fortnight.

W didn’t commit, as he’s going off Dr P and doesn’t think he provides value for money.

P noted that at $44 for half an hour (after rebate) Dr P isn’t all that expensive. Though he is certainly dearer than Dr S, who is free (and arguably useless).

Hypertension

W said he’d faithfully followed Dr P’s medication instructions for the last three weeks.

Though W’s slow heart rate played merry hell with Dr P’s BPM, he managed to derive two readings of 200/70 and 190/70. Both way too high.

All parties were very disappointed.

P said this could be due to W’s anxiety over getting the appointment time wrong.

Dr P didn’t reply.

Dr P modified W’s medication regime and told him to start taking his blood pressure four times a day.

P noted that last time W did that, he got into a positive feedback loop and freaked out.

P also noted that both of W’s BPMs were unable to cope with W’s slow heart rate.

P asked Dr P if he could recommend a high-quality BPM that could handle the slow heart rate.

Dr P could not.

P got the impression W will not be taking his blood pressure four times a day. Nor can P see the merit of this.

Prof Rob Whitbourn’s Magical Operation

P and W asked Dr P for a referral to St Vincent’s for the procedure flagged by a family member.

Dr P said it wasn’t that simple.

The procedure, called a sympathectomy, can only be done if a battery of tests indicates W is a suitable candidate.

It’s possible these tests have already been done by Dr G. If they have, and they point to W being a viable candidate, much time and effort will be saved.

P asked if the extensive medical history W delivered to Dr P three weeks ago might mention these tests.

Dr P gave the impression he still hadn’t read W’s history (a large folder of papers).

P asked Dr P if he could glance at the file in case what W needs is in there.

Dr P said he would do so at the next appointment (two weeks hence).

W and P were not impressed by this and decided to cut to the chase by going to the source (i.e. Dr G).

To find out if these tests have been done, P and W will see Dr G on 14/07/11.

With luck, Dr G will refer W for a sympathectomy.

Dr P noted that one of W’s medications is supposed to emulate the effects of a sympathectomy. Dr P suggested that if this pill isn’t working, the operation may not either.

P explained that W is heartily sick of his hypertension symptoms and is extremely keen to make something significant happen very soon.

Dr P said that one thing W could do immediately to reduce his hypertension is to avoid salt completely.

W said he was already doing this.

P noted that while W is indeed avoiding salt from a shaker, he is surrounded by it at home – in his food.

On returning to W’s home, P determined that W, unable to buy unsalted nuts, had bought salted nuts.

P then showed W the high salt content of the many packaged foods he eats (e.g. pasties, dim sims). W did not agree these amounts were high.

P reiterated his offer to deliver fresh, home-made meals to replace W’s packaged food diet.

W did not respond.

Home Assessment

W got a phone message from Peter James Rehab. When W called, however, he was told his contact had gone on leave for 18 days.

As W’s contact has no back-up, there is no Plan B. We must wait.

All in all, an extremely frustrating day.

Fingers crossed for better results tomorrow.

Brought to you by The Feisty Empire.

Pic by MsSarahKelly.


If you found this post interesting or useful, you may wish to:

Your smallest kindness will keep me going strong. With many thanks, Paul.


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4 Comments »

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  1. The word, arrogance, springs to mind. The doctors I mean. What other professional could get away with not being fully informed about a client by reading their portfolio/records? I had to chuckle at P going through W’s cupboard and finding all the salty products. W sounds like he was just like my Mum is.

    • Wow, Michelle; you really are the most dedicated of readers! Yes, Dr P was well and truly ‘over’ his profession. Merely dialing it in. I’m glad you had a chuckle; I was told that might happen but didn’t quite believe it. I’m also glad the story resonated with you. Thank you for another wonderful reply. Kind regards, P.

  2. Sometimes the only way to get through such frustrating sagas is to find something to chuckle about.
    Being a carer is one of the toughest jobs in the world, and need as much support (including frequent hugs) as they can get.
    Thanks for sharing your journey.

    • I hear you, Desolie. My psychologist nearly cacked himself at some of these stories during our sessions. So perhaps there’s something in this after all. Laughing it out of one’s system. Thank you for your eternal, etherial, embrace. It is most valued. Best regards, P.


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