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Old 07-08-2018, 04:54 PM   #11
Starznight
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I’ll admit to smoking in my house as well and yeah the smell can get a bit overwhelming or rather it did... a simple bowl of vinegar in the rooms we smoke in takes the smell right out of the air. It’s a bad habit and I do need to quit again, but at least a few bowls of vinegar placed around the house keeps me with company. Oh and if she crafts for charity, and you’re willing to assist her, take a plastic container and fill it with one part borax to one part peroxide and about 4 parts water... toss what she’s made in there before putting it in the car, let it soak at least an hour and then toss the whole load in the washer and it’ll be clean and fresh for anyone to use.
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Old 07-08-2018, 08:56 PM   #12
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But, my sister smokes in her house and it smells horrible. My daughter is not thrilled with that. She doesn't smoke when she's there but it still is everywhere. Unfortunately she can barely leave her house and when she does its for a doctors appointment. We are at our witts end.
Oh good heavens! Smoking is such a dangerous thing if you're disabled. Especially if you live alone. I know it's like talking to a brick wall trying to get them to stop because I've tried before, too, but they have to realize how risky it is. Not to mention the worry it causes other family members (like you and me!)
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:32 PM   #13
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Dangerous and toxic, to be a smoker regardless of your Mobility. Though I think before trying to change the smoking first, see what can be done for the pain. Without addressing her current quality of life I sincerely doubt she’ll be receptive to quitting and it’s likely to cause a shut down in communication completely. For years while I was in massive amounts of pain the doctors would point out that my smoking was going to kill me and I would respond every time with “Really? How many more do I need to smoke a day to speed things up then?” It was one part my being a smart *** and one part truly wishful thinking hat maybe if I could smoke a carton a day things would really speed up.

Trust me, no smoker thinks it’s actually healthy for them, we all know it’s a terrible vice, and when our family, friends and even perfect strangers lecture us about it all that really goes through our minds is how much longer are you gonna harp because we really WANT a cigarette right now. Many a times I’ve been driven to smoke almost 2 packs in a day because of folks telling how I need to quit (I normally smoke half a pack if that a day). Not advocating smoking, and not proud to be a smoker, but facing a perceived lifetime of agony in which nothing can be done for you is not the time that most smoker will even consider putting down their bic’s for good.
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Old 07-10-2018, 06:52 PM   #14
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Dangerous and toxic, to be a smoker regardless of your Mobility. Though I think before trying to change the smoking first, see what can be done for the pain. Without addressing her current quality of life I sincerely doubt she’ll be receptive to quitting and it’s likely to cause a shut down in communication completely. For years while I was in massive amounts of pain the doctors would point out that my smoking was going to kill me and I would respond every time with “Really? How many more do I need to smoke a day to speed things up then?” It was one part my being a smart *** and one part truly wishful thinking hat maybe if I could smoke a carton a day things would really speed up.

Trust me, no smoker thinks it’s actually healthy for them, we all know it’s a terrible vice, and when our family, friends and even perfect strangers lecture us about it all that really goes through our minds is how much longer are you gonna harp because we really WANT a cigarette right now. Many a times I’ve been driven to smoke almost 2 packs in a day because of folks telling how I need to quit (I normally smoke half a pack if that a day). Not advocating smoking, and not proud to be a smoker, but facing a perceived lifetime of agony in which nothing can be done for you is not the time that most smoker will even consider putting down their bic’s for good.

I understand. Unfortunately, I am a smoker too but a "closet smoker". I NEVER smoke in front of anyone but my fiance. I feel guilty to have started. I started during Hurricane Sandy. Just had finally kicked the husband out, no power for two weeks, still had to go to work and getting death threats. I know there is no excuse but that is my explanation. My youngest is the only one who doesn't know and I want to keep it that way until I quit.

My sister would never be receptive to quiting. We have tried. She smokes too much and drinks canadian club and seltzer everynight. She may say she has two, but what size?

Anyway. She is seeing her doctor tomorrow and I am going to email some of all of your input to hopefully put a match under ther butt. Love her dearly but she is, sorry to say, a pain in the butt to talk to!!
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Old 07-10-2018, 07:33 PM   #15
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Lol yeah sisters can certainly be that way, my sister and I can be polite in society but both of us are happiest keeping half the country between us and a convenient lack of memory for phone numbers . Another approach you might try with her is the tough love way... put her in charge of her own health. She says the doctors won’t operate (which yeah they probably won’t) so basically demand from her what’s next? PT? Cortisone shots? Implant pump or tens? Medication? Make her look it up, make her own choices and tell her your kids aren’t going to go over there and pick her up off the floor if she’s just going to wallow in her self pity. If she’s anything like my sister I’m sure it could be one heck of a row (she did not like the tough love approach to her husband cheating on her)

Basically need to get her to realize there are options, but you’re not gonna find them just bemoaning that one avenue that was closed. And doctors do care about their patients, but with all the specialists out there, they rarely have access to all the treatment options even more so if the patient doesn’t pretty much demand from their doctors the “so what now? And where do I go from here.”
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Old 07-11-2018, 05:08 PM   #16
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Thanks Starz,

My mother took her to her neurologist today. I personally think he's an idiot. He was my doctor for my TOS and I don't think I received the best care.

I provided her with information I received here and my mother provided her with some information she received. The doctor was completely non-receptive. He gave her a prescription for pain med for 3 months and then, I guess, they are done. So time is an issue. He used to drive me crazy beacuse when you were in his office for a consultation he had to type everything into his computer! How do you pay attention? He wants her to go to a pain management doctor. I have been to two. One did not give me enough to get out of bed in the morning. The other distributed like candy.

She told my mother she couldn't talk about it today. She cried in the office and cried going home. My sister is sixty and my mom is 82. I have to find someone for her to go to soon or she will end up in ER in major pain and withdrawl. I know we have a few months but it's hard to get appointments.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:35 PM   #17
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Oh gosh! I'm so sorry you have to go through this with your sister. It sounds as though she is not coping well, both from pain and the emotional effects of being in pain, having MS, and feeling hopeless.

I agree about getting a MRI to see what is going on. Seeking a good neurosurgeon is a good idea. There are some in the Pittsburg area. My friends husband just had cervical surgery done there. I'll try to find out his surgeons name. They are on vacation right now, but I will try. Additionally, I have an MS friend that lives by me. She fell and broke her hip and had it replaced and a few months later had spinal surgery to her cervical spine, if I remember correctly. I don't think it was her lumbar spine or thoracic. So, I think it can be done. It's just a matter of finding a good, qualified, and confident surgeon to do the surgery or to get a recommendation.

Also, I agree about the PT to see if that helps her. If she is unable to leave the house, check with her insurance about getting PT through a home health agency. They will come to the home and work with her.

Some people have had luck with accupuncture and other alternative/complementary medicine options. Explore those as well and see if you sister feels these are good options for her. Obviously, present things in a way where she feels she is making the decision on her own.

Good luck and let us know how she is doing.
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Old 07-12-2018, 11:59 AM   #18
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Regrettably there are quacks in all medical fields... I call our local hospital one of two names when asked about it, Camden Malpractice Center, or Southeast end of Life Services “if you aren’t dead yet we can fix that!”. Truly not a single doctor there, not just the ER doctors, are competent enough to distribute a bandaid let alone put one on a patient. But they’re number one in care for the county! Of course they’re the only ones in the county, if a witch doctor opened a hospital in the back of a rusty van they’d definitely beat out our current hospital for patient care, cleanliness and lack of neglectful death and secondary infections. Sorry ran of topic there....

But when looking for a pain management doctor it is an important thing to realize that very few doctors are created equally, so always go in for a consult first, and ask what your diagnosis is as they know it, will they require more testing, what treatment options are available, risks and benefits of them and how do they view your prognosis, are you going to spend the rest your life popping pills like skittles or are they going to try a multidisciplinary approach? And how long until you should expect to see results from the treatment plan?

If the doctor’s response is only to tell you about the various medications available to treat you, narcotics, muscle relaxants and anti-depressants, thank them for their time and find someone else. If they tell you they can get you fixed up and running again in a month, again find someone else.

You’re looking for a doctor who doesn’t offer the “wonder drug combination”, who doesn’t make unrealistic promises either. That’s not to say medication is bad and simply because they offer a medication program that you should ditch them, but they should be offering more than popping a few dozen pills a day. It might be cortisone shots, PT, tens, hot/cold therapy, massage, even speaking with a therapist or a nutritionist.

And pay attention to what they ask you as a patient as well, they should not only ask what your pain level is, but about your emotional state as well, your social health too. They should ask about activities you can and can’t do, what seems to make the pain worse, what seems to make it better, and what all you have already tried. And a really good pain management doctor short of you going after getting every test in the book, will likely ask for further testing. The MRI isn’t the only test on the books, blood tests to show cortisol levels in the blood can show how much pain one is truly in and if it is reaching a point of causing additional health concerns, nerve conduction tests (EMG) are equally important, and they may also want to test your blood sugar levels as well or in lieu of the cortisol testing. But it still comes down to they’re probably going to want more tests as you go through treatment.

If the doctor seems distracted, inattentive, or really just not listening to you and is unwilling to explain the whys and wherefores of their treatment find another doctor... really that applies to all doctors even a family practitioner. Never forget the doctor is working for YOU! They may be the ones who went to medical school, but they weren’t learning on YOUR body to get through YOUR life. And while it’s PC to say “we’re all equal” We most certainly are not, by any stretch of the imagination, not even identical twins are perfectly equal in life. It is your right as the employer of the doctor to know what is best for you and your life and how willing are they to adapt to what you require instead of the other 80% of their patients.

I mean you wouldn’t hire someone to put carpet down on your floors if they only carried one type because that’s what 80% of their clients want or are satisfied with right? Beige Berber carpet in every room of the house without a single variance in color or texture. Or an architect with only one floor plan who refuses even the smallest change to his design. So why take it from your doctor? A patient should feel engaged by their doctor, that you both are working towards a common goal, and that both understand the other and yes you are well within your rights as a patient to disagree with your doctor and tell them as much.

I left a doctor after telling her I was rejected from PT since they made me worse and she came back with the suggestion of yoga?! If a trained medical professional broke me further why would I put myself in the hands of a 6 week certificate course yogi?! Asked as much, she said for the stretching exercises, she goes to her local Y all the time for yoga classes... again PT was focused on stretching and I tore 3 ligaments while doing it, so why yoga? Because it’s healthy.... time for a new doctor... she’s also the doctor who told me to watch my sodium intake even though my sodium levels were on the low side of normal, after passing out several times and staring longingly at a salt block for deers at the local store, I went back to eating salt.
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