Monday, June 30, 2008

Drive-Through Diagnosis

The plan is for me to start IVs on Thursday. I'll get to do them from home, so that's good. The doc said that would be his anniversary gift to us. I thought that was nice of him to say.

In order to determine which meds I'll need, I had to go to the lab today and give a sputum sample. I always have to hold back a laugh when the technician says "let me know if you're successful." Honey, you have no idea how successful I can be in the sputum production department. I'm semi-pro. If coughing up lung oysters were an Olympic sport, I'd be a gold medal contender.

Parking at my hospital is not free unless you have a handicapped placard. The procedure is to present your placard with your parking pass at the kiosk on the way out. The attendant writes down your placard number, raises the gate and away you go. Today when I handed the attendant my nifty blue placard, I got more conversation than I ever wanted to have with a parking lot attendant. I was a captive audience too, because he wouldn't raise the gate!

Here's how the conversation went:

"You're too young to have a handicapped placard."

"No I'm not. I have cystic fibrosis."

"Oh, that's tough. Have you ever heard of XYZ Wellness Center?"

"Yes I have," I lied. "That stuff doesn't work for genetic diseases," I stated with what I hoped was enough firmness to get him to shut up.

"Genetic? No, what your problem is is suppressed immunity. It's from all the bad stuff we eat. I know a woman about your age with MS who went there and got cured."

"There's no cure for CF. It's genetic." I insisted. "There are cars behind me, may I please go?"

He continued his little speech, undaunted. "Well, this gal, she got cured. But then when she left the Wellness Center and got back on all the same junk food and processed food as before, it came back."

"Uh huh. Well, that's too bad. Sir, there are 3 cars behind me." I edged closer to the gate, intending to ram it if provoked.

His final words were "check them out on Sunday. You'll love it."

I peeled out of the parking lot. I'm not kidding. I actually laid rubber with the Prius. If I were a less civilized person, I probably would have yelled an obscenity or given a hand gesture as I drove away. Honestly, why do people think they can give advice like that. Especially in the parking lot of a hospital for crying out loud?!

Maybe that's the reason it costs $1 to park. You get all the discount medical info you need from the brilliant parking attendant as you exit the lot. Who needs lengthy appointments with medical professionals and disease specialists when you can get a drive-through diagnosis.

Uh...did he think CF was MS? Or did he think because MS was "cured" that CF could be as well?

Either way, I wish I could have been a passenger in the car for that conversation to see you tear out of there!

I wonder what medical advice they give at a $5 parking lot. Maybe that one comes with prescriptions!
"Woman held hostage in hospital parking lot" - I can just see the headlines! You sounded like you were very civil to him!

You're your discount medical help for a dollar comment!

$1 for parking, you're getting off cheap. I rarely get out for under $4.50 and sometimes its $5. And we don't get a reduced rate for handicapped card. And that 4.50-5 is with the stamp you get at the clinic. Its out of control, but you don't really have any other option. I've had people like that who give you unsolicited and uneducated medical advice. I always like the one who will tell me that eating a certain diet or herbs or whatever will make me better. I usually just nod along, but I'm thinking to myself "no, better treatments or a lung transplant will make me better." Its nice that you got to do home IV's rather than the hospital. Doing them at home always makes things a bit easier. I can literally do them in my sleep now. Anyways, i hope the IV's work well for you.
That would be funny if it were not pathetic on his part.
Complain to the hospital! Nobody leaving a hospital wants to hear that crap.
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