Run for the Hills!

If I could run- that is exactly what I would have done to get away from the orthopedic doctor that we visited with on Monday.  I can not recall a time when I have felt more belittled, squashed and just plain dismissed by a professional than what happened at this visit.  This post is long, long, long winded—so if you make it to the end- bravo and thanks.

Let me preface this all to say that I took the quickest appointment with the myriad of orthopedic groups that I called last week so that I could get seen prior to heading on a 5 day girls trip to DC later this week.  I got a ton of great recommendations from friends that have had similar knee surgeries or issues as me so I started by calling each one of those offices- many of them could not see me until Mid to late April- one could see me the evening before my flight and one could see me on Monday (but not the doctor that was recommended to me by friends- a different doc in the group.) So I took the Monday appointment because I just needed to get in somewhere and hopefully get a brace if nothing else and then when I get back I can seek further opinions if needed.

I am going to refrain from posting the name or the group on this blog-for now– if I get around to posting a yelp review I will link it, but I tend to be a lot more wordy on my blog so there is more room for emotion to show through here than on Yelp which can strain from the overall meat of a review.  **Yelp review added- Check it out here For those asking- my bad experience was at The Orthopedic Clinic Association (TOCA) and with Dr. Zoltan.

I guess there were red flags from the beginning that I should have seen:

One- all other docs were booked up and this one had a quick opening

Two- when I checked in at 9:30am for my 9:45am appointment I was told there was one other patient ahead of me. I sat down and that patient was called back, but then an older gentleman walked in the door (the office staff all greeted him kindly as it seemed he must be a frequent flier at the office) and I hear the receptionist tell him that she does not have him down for an appointment for this day- but she would try to get him on the schedule.  Next thing I know- he gets called back to go see my doctor at 9:40am.  It was after 10 before I was taken back to an exam room for my 9:45 appointment (that I DID have)

19816_10205724324163877_1893959356088176573_n

When the Doc finally came in about 10 minutes later he was very too the point- asked me what I was in there for and as I began to tell him a very abbreviated version of what happened he cuts me off and says “how are you right now- what is going on right now- how do you feel?”

I was so caught off guard that I blabbered out “well to be honest, right now I feel pretty good- I have very little pain and I mostly have range of motion issues and problems with certain movements.” I had not even told him exactly what injury had occurred so all he had heard was I was on an obstacle course inflatable on Saturday March 28th and the inflatable had sunk under me- Jason pipes in- “Jess you do have pain- especially with certain twists and pivots.” Doc motions for me to climb up on the exam table ( via  a large pull out step stool) and as I am struggling (I assume part of his dx of me was to watch me and see what I could and could not do) Jason finally stands up and offers to support me so I can hoist myself up. At this point I say “I do have an MRI disk that we gave to your office- it says I have a completely torn ACL and a 2nd grade MCL tear, at which point I lay down and stop talking because honestly it felt like he was not listening and or didn’t really want to hear me talking anyways.

He then proceeds to “scold” me for having an ace wrap on, telling me I will get blood clots and to not use it anymore” (I had been following the other doctors recommendation and it was providing some relief, support and peace of mind) He then tugged on my leg and knee and did a few massage probes- none of which was anything that sent me into my “pain” moments- he never turned my knee into the “pain” and at one point where he was massaging was “tender” so I said so but other then that really nothing else.  He asked me “what kinds of sports did you enjoy prior to this injury?” and I said- “I have been doing water aerobics” and he says “good” then he walks towards the door and says “I am gonna go have a look at the images” and walks out the door total time that passed had to of been no more than 3 minutes- if that and most of that was because I was struggling to get up on the table.

I turned to Jas and said “you don’t like him do you?”- cause I was already feeling very underwhelmed by his demeanor personally-but I also know that sometimes the best doctors are not the most personable.  Jason sort of shrugs and says “not for me to decide- as long as he is good and professional at what he does and makes you comfortable.”  Doc comes back in and says he is just waiting for the imaging center to send over their report of the MRI reading and Jason reaches into our folder and hands him our copy-  He disappears again and when he comes back he says:

“So I do not think you have an MCL tear- if you did you would be in pain- even today” (not because in reviewing the images of the MRI he sees no tear- but because I was not showing him the pain he felt I should have been showing)  He then says “I also do not think your ACL is completely torn- it is torn- but it is likely that you had that tear long before this injury and have just been unaware of it”  WHAT????– oooookay? I say “well I did hear and feel a pop when it happened” and he just goes “so?” and shrugs- then he proceeds with  “So I am not recommending surgery right away- I am going to aggressively rehab you with physical therapy and we will see where you are in 2, 3, 6 months”  I was still sort of stunned that his dx is so different then what 2 other medical professionals agreed was wrong. I already knew I was going to at minimum get another opinion (so technically a 4th opinion) but now having 2 saying one thing and 1 saying something different I may need several more opinions.  It felt like he was wrapped up and heading out so I snapped out of my stunned daze and I said to him “I have a few questions- so he says “ok shoot”- I mention that I am going to DC and I want to be extra cautious- so if I can not use an ace wrap can I get a brace? ” he replies “Yup, next?” – I then ask, if it is possible to get a temporary parking permit mostly for use on my DC trip- again to be extra cautious- and he says “Sure- I don’t have any DC paperwork though” and he turns to walk out the door.  I tell him DC recognizes Arizona’s permits so he says “sure- anything else?” At this point he is half way out the door- so I turn to Jason who is just about purple with fury and I say “You don’t have any other questions do you hun” Jason just shakes his head because he already recognizes this is all futile with the man so why waste anymore breath. Doc then points his fingers at Jas like a little gun, gives him a wink and turns down the hall.

And that was our experience with this Doc.  Jason immediately says – “no.” and I knew exactly what he meant and agreed.

A PT comes in to fit me for a brace and a nurse comes in with paperwork for the physical therapy plan and some referral form saying that he was “referring us to such and such doc” Jason says “what and who is this? He never mentioned anything about any referral.”  So she says- “hmmm let me go check”  I get my brace on and nurse comes back and takes the referral saying “never-mind” and as the PT is about to leave he says “Any questions?” to which I exasperatedly sigh “not for YOU”  Jason mutters- “so is that it? are we to just leave now? We really do not feel like we have been taken very well care of at all here today?”   PT says “yup he just wants to see you again in four weeks”  to which I say “THAT will NOT be happening- we will NOT be coming back here again.”  PT sort of shrugs and walks away and we head towards the exit.
The office staff pipe up “do you need to make a follow up?” and I say “well Doc wants one- but we will NOT be doing that.”  This of course sets them into “fix it mode” likely because we are within ear shot of the lobby just over their desk- they stand up and walk over saying “is everything ok” and Jason says- “not really.”  I finally turn to her and then- everything I had been holding in comes out and I lose it.  I start crying and blubbering about what an awful experience I had just endured- I felt rushed, not listened to, like I have more questions than answers like I was annoying the doctor and he had no time for me- especially to explain how he came to a different dx than what other professionals have told me etc.  She asks if she can get her supervisor and I say “its not going to help- we are not coming back here ever again”  She keeps on saying she hates to see me leave as upset as I was and I tell her “well it is what it is- this is how I feel about what just happened nothing is going to change that”- and we walk into the lobby.  At this point the lobby was packed and almost everyone was staring at me- so I just grin and say- “Run- do NOT go here.” and we leave the building. From the moment the doc had walked in to the moment we were walking out was all of 23 minutes–(this included him reviewing the MRI, and the PT fitting me for the brace and my unloading on the office staff etc— I know because Jason had posted the picture of me on his facebook a few minutes before the doctor walked in and  I texted my BFF about it while in the car driving home so there are time stamps.

I do feel a ton more confident walking with the brace on so at least something good came from the visit and the specialist co-pay.

In the end he could be absolutely right- maybe I am not as injured as the MRI imaging X-Ray tech who reads MRIs for a living  said- or the Urgent care doctor that was the 2nd read of the images said- maybe that is why it hasn’t seemed to be as sever as what others have experienced- but what if I just have a different pain tolerance level or what if my fat is cushioning it all and providing support and lessening the pain, what if I also did nerve damage that makes the pain less then it “should be?” Even so-  he did at least agree that I do have a tear of some sort on my ACL (but never said what degree he felt it was)- I wish he would have been a better doctor that would have sat and showed us what he was seeing or was not seeing on the MRI images so we could understand.  I don’t think that is too much to ask.

So that is that- I will make a few additional appointments for when I get back from DC and we will go from there.

It is likely he is right- I am not as badly injured as the initial reports said- after all I am feeling really, really good and everyone is always so surprised how little pain I have been in- but after his rushed attitude and his demeanor- we have a hard time just trusting his 10 minute review of the situation.

Advertisements

Our first Blue Apron!!

image

Our friend Kim has been getting Blue Apron deliveries for awhile now and had a free week to give away so we decided to go ahead and try it out for ourselves.  So upfront it should be know that this week’s delivery was free to us.  We do intend to try it out at our own cost for a few weeks to give it a go for an extended period of time and see how well it fits our family. If you do not know what Blue Apron is- just check out the link- its basically delivery of fresh ingredients for unique seasonal recipes.  It is a subscription box service and for our family only the second of such services we participate in (the other being the Dollar Shave club where we have razor refill blades mailed to us every month) Also- I am posting this prior to even cooking anything in it because I am so excited to share–I will update with a review once I get back from DC later this month and link it here.

image

The free trial she had we were given the option to choose either 3 meals for 2 people or 2 meals for a family of 4. Since it is our first go at it and since I am prepping to go out of town I decided to try the 2 meal option and we will figure out dinner for the boys on these nights separately.  It is delivered in a refrigerated box so the ingredients are packed as close to shipping as they can to guarantee freshness.

image

It came in a neat cooler bag with cold packs. Everything pre-portioned, which makes us feel like tv chefs that have our own minions doing prep for us!! I freaking LOVE this!!

image

 I also think that this will help Jason with preparing dinners more often as I recover from my knee injury– he loves to cook and I think the prep is what always sends both of us into “let’s just grab take out” mode on those more exhausting days.  I think this may prevent that some! Not to mention the portion control factor that I think is going to really benefit the Fit Family Fun goals we have been focusing on this year.

wpid-dsc_0302.jpg

When I signed up I selected to not have any meals with lamb (personal preference), Seafood or shellfish (allergy) or mushrooms (anaphalactic allergy) so that does create some challenges when the protein meals are seafood or mushroom related- which kind of happened this first week- we do not have any “meat” meals because they were either seafood or mushroom heavy.  However, we are still super excited to try out some stuff we likely would never have tried before because it would have been too costly to go buy the individual “odd” ingredients (spices and extras come labeled as “knickknacks”) or because it “sounds too fancy or weird.

This week we will get to try:

wpid-2015-04-04-10.43.07.jpg.jpeg

wpid-2015-04-04-10.43.45.jpg.jpeg

wpid-2015-04-04-10.44.33.jpg.jpeg

All of which we are really looking forward to. Like I said- I am leaving for a trip to DC this Thursday so these meals will help me to not have to grocery shop prior to my trip except for a few smaller things for the boys.  Jason will get the next delivery on Saturday while I am gone and him and Connor can try some of those delicious looking dinners out- (I am jealous- next week there is steak, turkey meatballs and spaetzel- so hopefully they save at least one meal for me to try out of that when I get home late Monday night)  So I will post a review of the meals and cooking process when I get the chance after I return.

So excited!  Thanks Kim and Blue apron!!

Anyone else try it out? What are your thoughts on it?

wpid-2015-04-04-10.42.00.jpg.jpeg

KaPow! In more ways than one!

PhotoGrid_1427556378797

 

So the Geroux Crew geared up with homemade tees representing some iconic Super Heroes and headed out to Freestone Park in Gilbert for the Annual KaPow! Super Hero Fun Run.  This was our main  Fit Family Fun activity for the month of March.  We had some Wonder Woman, Batman, Robin and Flash representation.  Grandma and Grampa Geroux came along to cheer us on and capture some photos for us as well.

DSC_0029

The event had vendors and music and games and over 20 obstacles. Our wave was to begin at 9:25 but we were watching and it seemed pretty laid back and informal so we decided to hop in with the 9:05am wave.

DSC_0061

 

 

 

And this ladies and gentleman –on the very first obstacle of the course would be the last moment my right ACL was fully intact:

 

DSC_0088

 

Yup- Daddio inadvertently captured my entire knee injury nearly frame for frame.  A soon as my weight fully shifted forward here the inflatable sunk straight down and my body rolled over the top of my knee.

DSC_0089

 

I have to laugh at it all now- especially since we have these pictures of it.  As soon as I heard the pop- I hollered out– “oh no I just BUSTED my knee”- Poor Ty started yelling “we need some help in here my mom just busted her knee!”  I some how stood up- and assessed my situation—I could either attempt to climb a 10 foot inflatable wall to a slide heading forward or squeeze myself back through where I just came- directly into the people trying to push their toddlers through behind me.  I opted for the latter- profusely apologizing.  Then I was faced with the back side of a 4 foot inflatable wall I had already climbed over– but the back side has no foot or hand holds on it– its just smooth—

Enter my He-man- Jason- who wisely opted out of attempting the obstacle- jumped up bent over the wall and yanked me over it—-I just went–and tumbled over it and my momentum paired with us being 2 big folk on plastic air just sunk. I am grateful I didnt hurt him.  By this point the boys come around the corner and are like “come on mom, we are running behind”—so I yelled– GO– Jason go with the boys…Go”

I knew – with it being the first obstacle there was no way that, even with rest, I would be doing this race.  So fueled by adrenalin I hobbled over to the shade and plopped myself down on the ground. Then the nausea hit- I so did not want to throw up- but that is my bodies “holy crap what did you just DO to me” response.  I was able to keep my stomach contents contained and eventually mom and I waved a golf cart over to take me over to watch the guys come through the finish line.

Dad got some shots of the guys on a few obstacles close by:

DSC_0101

DSC_0113DSC_0117

And about a half hour later they came across the finish line

DSC_0146

DSC_0152

 

I went to Urgent Care and got x-rays-when I was manuevering around on the xray table felt another smaller pop and suddenly had range of motion back. So I had probably dislocated my knee cap and then popped it back in. Doc sent me to get an MRI— which was same day. I came home and iced and took some aleve and let the whole experience really sink in.  The next day I laid low and followed instructions to prop, ice and use crutches.  By Monday I was feeling good walking- even without crutches and even began going up and down the stairs a few times a day. So I really anticipated that I had only sprained it.

Several calls to the doc and Imaging center and my MRI was finally “read”  and I was diagnosed on Wednesday April 1st.

I have a complete tear of my anterior cruciate ligament and 2nd degree tear of my medial collateral ligament (3rd degree is complete)– I have an appointment Monday with an orthopedic doctor to figure out the next steps- surgery is likely on the horizon. Jason thought it was an April Fools Joke.

I Wish.

Geocaching!

Our “main” fit family fun activity for February was to be a hike- and then we met some new friends at church that are veteran geocahers and decided that seemed like a much better way to spend a glorious Arizona morning. So on Valentines day we headed out to McDowell Mt Park to do the “Scenic trail” and have our first taste of geocaching.

IMG_20150214_153132

 

Having something to poke around and find out in the desert sure made the hike more interesting.   The scenery was breathtaking and I kept remarking how it took new friends moving here from Washington state to make us trek out into our own backyard and marvel at the beauty up close. We thought it was a 3.5 mile hike- but it ended up being more than 4.5 and I have to admit that last mile really did me in. I lost my emotions and started sobbing when I got back to the trail head and Connor had stood there waiting to congratulate me for finishing.  That child- he does me in all the time with how in tune to me he can be. Of course our good friends the Parkers were with is and ever encouraging along the way as well.

 

Enjoy this little montage of the fun 🙂