Get Out the Message
Since I started my blogging career with the Arthritis Broadcast Network, I find myself spreading the message that arthritis is often misdiagnosed or not diagnosed at all. I also find that people are seeking the benefit of my experience from dealing with ankylosing spondylitis for more than 25 years. A recent chance encounter with an educated woman who has an important job in the banking sector, however, left me wondering why people who are independent, free-thinking individuals used to making important business decisions on a daily basis, become incapable or perhaps overwhelmed when presented with symptoms requiring medical attention.
During a recent meeting with my banker, I noticed that she winced when bending over and appeared to be favouring one of her legs. When I questioned her, she readily admitted that she is suffering from what her GP has diagnosed as sciatica. Whoa…flashbacks of me 25 years ago telling my GP about the pain in my butt that radiated down my leg. So I started to quiz her: which health professional had she consulted? Had x-rays showed anything? How long had she been experiencing the symptoms? What medication was she taking to control the pain?
When finished my “20 questions”, I encouraged her to continue taking the over-the-counter meds that were giving her some relief and to consult a rheumatologist to get to the root of the issue. I even offered the name of a rheuma that practices in her immediate area. I pray that AS is not what she is suffering and that it is no more than an irritated sciatica nerve.
My meeting with my banker was a last-minute decision, but I am a firm believer that everything in life happens for a reason. The forms I expected to sign with the banker were not ready, so perhaps there was a greater reason why I ended up in her office.