Wednesday, January 30, 2013


It's been an interesting week.

I've had this cough for a month now.  Last Wednesday I started feeling dizzy/light-headed when I coughed when standing.  Life goes on.  Thursday I woke up with a migraine and started to feel dizzy all the time, even when sitting down and not coughing.  Then I noticed some vision changes in my right eye.  I called and spoke with a couple different nurses at my doctor's office and together we decided that it would be best if I go to the ER.  Ok, arrived at the ER at 5pm and saw the worst nurse known to man.  He had no personality and made me feel like I was bothering him and angering him when I asked to go to the bathroom and when he had to do things like get my vitals or check the IV fluid.  By the way, he put the automatic blood pressure cuff on the same arm as the IV.  Can you say OUCH?

After all was said and done - a CT showed I did not have a new stroke and the bloodwork showed no abnormalities explaining my symptoms - they admitted me.  I got up to my room at 1am on Friday morning and was awakened every 2 hours for neuro checks.  Good times!  The docs did all sorts of checks and I saw a bunch of different specialists on Friday, but they would not discharge me, despite everything coming up basically normal.  I do have a visual field deficit from my previous stroke, which was sometime between 2003 and 2009.

Saturday - my BIRTHDAY - I woke up and saw both the hospitalist and the neurologist.  The hospitalist said he wanted to keep me another day.  WHAT?  I said that I really wanted to go home, plus explained that it was my bday.  After disagreeing with me about it being my bday (evidently my chart said it was Thursday - or he misread my admit date), he agreed saying that nobody should be in the hospital on their birthday.  Whew!!  Shortly thereafter, the neurologist came in.  He is an colleague of my regular neuro and is quite young.  He did his checks and told me he wants me to get a sleep study -- that I am at high risk for sleep apnea, which can explain a number of my symptoms, including weight gain (!).  I had heard the recommendation from another doctor so was not surprised at this.  They did decide that the symptoms were due to the migraine (even though the headache part of it went away Thursday morning).

What came next, though, blew my mind... in fact I still can't wrap my mind around it.  He said that he did not want me driving and that I have to take a driving test/evaluation.  Is he serious??  Evidently he is concerned about my visual field deficit and how it affects my driving.  HUH?  I've been driving with said deficit since I had the stroke, more than 3 years ago!  I have not gotten in an accident, hit anything, heck, I have never gotten a speeding ticket!

I call the facility which performs these evaluations and they have to have the doctor complete a form before I can schedule.  Oh, and they are booked through February (and this is before waiting for the doctor to fill out said paperwork)!  Of course I have more than a half dozen appointments in the next month.  I have to rearrange and reschedule everything on my calendar and rely on my husband to drive me places.

I suffered from agoraphobia for years and was afraid to go anywhere, having panic attacks.  I stayed in the house, except to go see my therapist - for years!  Now I'm forbidden to drive so am stuck in the house and going bonkers after a very short period of time!  I did beg of the neuro to allow me to drive to see my therapist yesterday.  It was his last day before going out on medical leave for 6-8 weeks and I needed to go.  He worded his order in such a way that I could drive there.

Now I'm stuck - and going to lose my mind!!  You may read some pretty irrelevant blog posts for a while.... me trying to keep busy.  Don't judge me ;-)


  1. Oh man, that SUCKS. And, sleep apnea can be a bitch. My husband was diagnosed years ago and it had caused all kinds of problems.

    The no driving is such bs. I'm so sorry you are having to deal with it.

    Dragondreamer's Lair

  2. Thanks, Kristin. My husband has it as well. I was thinking we may have His and Hers c-pap/bi-pap machines. How romantic!