Subscribe: Subscribe to me on YouTube

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Here at the Gardner Foot & Mouth Clinic, I was the first patient to see a specialist yesterday. And the good news is that I've now hopped a little further down the road to recovery. I left my Mum in charge of my wife and daughter for an hour yesterday morning, and headed up to Brighton General to tell the podiatrist that his steroid injection had failed to put a spring in my step.

He responded by telling me that in that case, he'll book me in for a guided steroid injection, which is basically the same thing, but done in conjunction with an ultrasound scan, so that they can pinpoint the exact location of the problem, and needle me with precision. Apparently it has a much higher success rate. Which makes you wonder why they didn't do that in the first place.

Actually, it doesn't make you wonder at all. The answer's money. The initial injection is quick, easy, relatively cheap, and works for most people. The guided version is more expensive, time-consuming, and can't be done at the normal foot clinic. I have to go to the main hospital instead. They'll be sending me an appointment in a couple of weeks time. It's annoying to have to wait even longer, but hey, it's a step forward. Albeit a painful, limping one.

As for Lisa, she visited her usual dental practice yesterday, but saw a dentist she's never seen before - a Mr Josef O'Keefe. I wouldn't normally name (and shame) a healthcare provider on this blog, but I'm making an exception in this case, because he was actually fantastic. We only met the man for ten minutes, but he made such an impression (that's a dental impression) that Lisa's already prepared to follow him to the ends of the earth for a couple of fillings. Frankly he could set up a practice on Mars, and she'd be robbing a bank to buy rocket fuel for a six-monthly check-up. I've never seen anyone understand Lisa's feelings and fears so instantly, and act so appropriately. In five minutes he did more to improve her state of mind than I'd managed in two days.

On the downside, he found that one of Lisa's wounded tooth sockets is badly infected, and he's limited in what he can do until the infection clears up. So he gave her some antibiotics, a strong mouthwash and an appointment for Friday. He said he couldn't promise that he could save her two damaged teeth, but he's going to try.

I've been off work since Tuesday, and was hoping to make my comeback in Crawley today, so having dropped Lisa back home from the dentist, I asked her how she felt about me returning to work. Ten minutes later, I was dabbing the tear stains off my shoulder and driving into work to plead for another two days leave.

On 30th April last year, I wrote that "I work with the kind of lovely people who will let me take three days off with no notice whatsoever, and happily cover my clinics". And fortunately that's still the case. They gave me the rest of the week off, some words of support, and the names of a few good dentists. You can't ask for much more than that.


Dave said...

I'm treating this, albeit slowly, as good news.  I'll still keep mentioning you both in my prayers for a bit longer though.

Phil said...

Thanks Dave. (And God, obviously).