After I got my discharge paperwork from the ER on Friday, I noticed my surgical ankle was swollen to the size of a baseball so when I saw the doc before I left, I asked him about it. He said he could feel a pulse throughout the foot, so it wasn’t a blood clot.
Flash forward to today and my legs are super swollen as well. There are indentations in my leg due to the swelling around my knees and thighs. It’s a little better after laying down and sleeping for a while, but it hurts to walk or move due to the swelling.
I went to urgent care this morning to see what might be the cause because after icing my feet and legs yesterday, elevating them, and drinking a lot of water, I am still pretty swollen and in pain. It could be either heat related because we are having a massive heat wave here in the PNW. But it could also deal with my medication called promethazine that helped with nausea and I had to abruptly stop taking that because it caused involuntary movements in my limbs. But mainly I made the appointment to rule out blood clots because I am high risk for blood clots.
At urgent care, they couldn’t rule out blood clots because they didn’t have access to an ultrasound machine and other blood tests needed to make that diagnosis. So off to the emergency room I go!
Five hours later, this ER doctor said the same thing that the other ER doctor said to me two days ago. The only difference is that I should follow up with my orthopedic surgeon since this could be surgery related. How it could be surgery related, I am not sure because I have the same symptoms in both feet. Supposed to do the RICE method – rest, ice, compress, and elevate. She diagnosed me with edema which is fluid in an extremity, particularly legs and feet.
So I got home to my air conditioned house and for five hours and multiple bathroom breaks due to taking a diuretic to help with the fluid retention the ice and elevation didn’t work at all. There was absolutely no change in my symptoms and the diuretic didn’t help either. My parents went and got me compression socks to help but I couldn’t get even my toes into the sock with how swollen my feet are. So that was all a bust and a waste of money.
I tried regular socks to maybe help that went up to the calf and that was a bust. So was trying to put my walking boot on my foot; it cut off my circulation.
Game plan now is to go to orthopedic urgent care first thing tomorrow morning and see if they can do something for the edema in my feet. I would schedule an appointment with my orthopedic surgeon, but she does surgeries every Monday and Friday and if I can get relief or a diagnosis or cause from the orthopedic clinic doctor, I would be very happy. But if all else fails, I will go to my primary care physician on Tuesday when her office is open and maybe they can do something.
I am frustrated with the American health care system. Nobody who works in healthcare has much empathy. It’s like a job to them; a paycheck, not a livelihood. So you get sent all over the place like a hot potato because no one wants to touch you or help fix what’s wrong because it takes care, tact, and effort to properly help someone. But then again, hospitals are still businesses and they are in the business of making money. So the nurses and doctors have no reason to hold empathy toward patients as long as the hospital is making money and they are too.
I apologize if you are a healthcare worker and you are reading this. I just cannot stand the county hospital that I have to go to. I rarely get solutions to my issues, it just gets a band aid slapped on and it’s like there you go! Something is wrong and nobody is willing to help figure out a long term solution.
I am a naturally very empathetic person which is why I am studying psychology in school and work part time at a mental health facility. I am so respectful and polite when I talk to any service and goods person whether it be a store clerk, doctor’s office staff, drive thru employees, etc. So when I treat others with obvious respect and they, the doctors, don’t do the same is disrespectful.
I am thankful to God that I don’t have blood clots but I would like a diagnosis sooner rather than later because I start 1 of my 2 jobs this Wednesday. At this rate, I can’t fit into any shoe and if my shoes don’t fit, I can’t go to work. Not to mention I have yet to receive anything from my state as far as paid medical leave goes. It has been well over a month since I applied for benefits and gave them the supporting documents but no response as of yet.
I hope the payments come through quickly because I am broke as a joke and don’t know what I can do, especially if I need to take more time off of work for my feet severely swelling. But I am not holding my breath, let’s just leave it at that.
Tomorrow is another day. Time to chill out and calm down.