Steve A. 7/25/2018 9:42 AM
Good news on the health front!
My cardialogist returned this morning and read the 3 messages I had meticulously composed within the 1000 character limit allowed at the Kaiser site and has me scheduled for a cardiac MRI on Monday the 30th. If stents are necessary they will insert them through angioplasty Moday. If open heart surgery is required they will have to do that in SF on a later date which is fine with me.

Thank God for Kaiser!

Steve A.

For more details here are links to posts I made yesterday on my health condition:

http://music-electronics-forum.com/s...032#post503032

http://music-electronics-forum.com/s...038#post503038

http://music-electronics-forum.com/s...081#post503081
 
Leo_Gnardo 7/25/2018 9:47 AM
H'raaaay Steve! I sure hope this works.
 
Steve A. 7/25/2018 10:06 AM
Quote Originally Posted by Leo_Gnardo View Post
H'raaaay Steve! I sure hope this works.
Thanks, Leo! It was your post that prompted me to mention my medical condition here and I hope that I thanked you for it. I really wanted to figure out how to create a real poll here like bob p figured out a few months ago but was focused on creating three 1000 messages to my cardiologist to read upon her return today, 3 messages which could be read independently in any order. In the past I would split up a long message into Part 1, Part 2 and sometimes even Part 3 which could be confusing if read out of order.

More important, I edited the text meticulously, eliminating unneeded words and phrases... the finest editing job I have ever done. I even created my own filing system for saving previous drafts, numbered 0.0 for initial notes and going up to 1.0, 1.1, 1.2... for the first message and 2.0, 2.1... for second, etc., etc., etc.

In the past I would just create a duplicate when I was ready to make some big edits but had no numbering system to keep track of them.

True confession... I have always wanted to be a professional writer, like a humor columnist in a newspaper or magazine. But this was more important — I was writing for my very life and managed to not screw it up.

I am the diametrical opposite of a Fundamentalist Bible thumper but I thank God for Kaiser and I thank God that my messages were successful in prompting my cardiologist to take prompt action.

FWIW I was an agnostic for most of my life but with me surviving one medical emergency after another I know that there is someone somewhere watching over me... perhaps like The Force in Star Wars because I know it certainly isn't me who keeps saving my butt!

Steve A.
 
Justin Thomas 7/25/2018 10:16 AM
Maybe look at freelance advocacy work for others who aren't as articulate as yourself?

I actually wouldn't mind doing some editing & proofreading work myself...

Justin
 
Leo_Gnardo 7/25/2018 10:19 AM
Quote Originally Posted by Steve A. View Post
I have always wanted to be a professional writer, like a humor columnist in a newspaper or magazine. But this was more important — I was writing for my very life and managed to not screw it up.
There's some old quote about how dealing with a life hazard situation can focus the mind. And I'm delighted and very flattered if anything I said inspired you into life preserving action. All the best matey! Courage! LG
 
g1 7/25/2018 2:19 PM
Glad to hear you had success with your communication with the doctor, Steve.
Thanks for keeping us updated & hope it goes well next week.
 
The Dude 7/25/2018 5:19 PM
Hoping for the best, Steve. I hope all goes well and you have a speedy recovery.
 
dmartn149 7/25/2018 5:53 PM
Super glad to hear that, Steve. I hope they find that you only need stents, and they can get you in and out feeling much better.
 
tedmich 7/25/2018 9:22 PM
i hope you live FOREVER Steve!
[ATTACH=CONFIG]49875[/ATTACH]
 
mikepukmel 8/4/2018 7:07 AM
Very good to hear 'good news' in the thread title, Steve.
 
Steve A. 8/4/2018 7:19 AM
When I found myself getting very weak on July 29th and 30th I thought I better get thyself to the ER post haste. It seems like the side effects from the Eliquis blood thinner was the only thing keeping me wired up enough to get around with my systolic BP readings in the 50's and 60's from the CHF meds like Coreg and Entresto; once the blood thinner clinic discontinued it because of the insomnia and the horrendous drymouth it was causing (among other side effects) I could sleep like a baby but unfortunately started to get weak like a baby, too. I had stopped posting here last week because my hands were having trouble holding my feather light 7" tablet and typing with my index finger which was certainly not due to me not exercising those muscles!

A CT scan on Monday the 30th found a large mass in my lower right lobe that had not been present on the April 25th scan which complicated plans to immediately proceed with cardiac catheterization and they had to raise my BP enough to go in for a biopsy which they finally did yesterday. I was scared of the prospect of them taking the biopsy through my ribcase, thinking it'd be like getting spiked by Buffy the Vampire Slayer but being guided by an MRI machine it was quite painless, during and after. Modern medicine rocks!

I've been treated very well by all staff at Kaiser Permanente***... with its vertical integration of practically all functions I believe that it serves as the perfect model for universal health care in the US. With it being basically non-profit its nothing at all like Sutter Health jacking up prices for Blue Shield marking up their premiums for corporate profits (if you can afford an expensive PPO health plan go for it!) And none of those shocking surprises like the anesthesiologist being "out of network" raising all of your copays.

All of the staff at Kaiser could make more money working in private practise or at the predatory health groups so they are here because they really care about the patients. Last Tuesday morning I was really impressed by the youthful enthusiasm of the ICU staff coming in around 6AM... I found it to be rather invigorating.

I worked in the HVAC service industry for many years and the 800 lb gorilla in the area had pep rallies every morning, even doing jumping jacks as I heard from some ex-employees but that was all fake, their motivation being the pursuit of the mighty dollar. The staff here was enthusiast being here to serve their patients!

I've been getting the impression that the GOP battle cry of "keeping your own doctors" is a dog whistle phrase ending with "and none of those damned immigrants!" of which Kaiser has plenty. In our country we have doctors certified in their home countries working as taxi cab drivers until they can get certified here... that is real dedication! And "keeping your own doctors" ignores the fact that there are all sorts of great doctors out there, many of which are more talented than your own. Just because your own doctor is familiar with your secret history of carbuncles doesn't necessarily make him an expert in all things medical...

Steve A.

*** Well, there was the head nurse in my ICU ward Thursday night who refused to bring me any apple juice because my ongoing medical condition list includes the words "diabetic" even though my blood sugar reading was 89. I had lost even more weight when my terrible drymouth prevented me from eating solid food for 8 weeks so all of my doctors wanted me to regain weight eating as many calories as possible even though they might be empty. I was finally able to put my dentures in for dinner Thursday and had a really nice chicken dinner (Kaiser food has improved considerly since the last time I was an inpatient) with a really nice teriyaki salmon dinner last night.

My really nice nurse last night thought I was on a diabetic diet but looked it up and saw that I wasn't so she brought me real jello that wasn't sugar-free (ugh!), several apple juice boxes and ice cream. My TV remote had kept losing audio every time I would adjust my bed controls since I arrived and she was finally the one who managed to get a maintenance man to my room to replace it (hooray!)

The night before a different nurse managed to get the air pump for my "pumper" leggings replaced as it only worked on my left leg. (This ward is being remodeled with only a few rooms left for patients so I don't hold all of that against Kaiser.)

Speaking of those leggings I first experienced them after coming out of an 8 day medically induced coma in 2011 (this was the same week when bin Laden had been captured and killed which I missed) and thought it was me having a flashback to my days as a druggie when you'd feel like you were flying after smoking some really good buds (I guess vertigo can give you that sensation as well.) "So that's a machine doing that... I thought it was me!"
 
Mark Hammer 8/4/2018 7:48 AM
One of the arguments served up in Canada, against having private-sector hospitals and fee-for-service, is that many of the better physicians would be lured away with the prospect of making more money, undermining the capacity of public hospitals to maintain their current level of service. Private dilution of public.

In one respect, it is always possible to fill the gaps with "imported" health professionals. However:

a) there is nearly always a requirement that they engage in some sort of internship or residency program, to assure that their level of knowledge/practice is comparable to domestic standards, and there usually aren't enough such openings to go around - barely enough for our own med-school graduates;

b) I am not thrilled with the idea of North America "poaching" health-care professionals from other countries whose own health-care is often marginal at best. The idea that someone in Asia or Africa can't see a doctor AT ALL, just so someone here doesn't have to wait an extra month for an MRI on a nagging knee, or an extra hour in Emergency, does not sit well with me. For those not so crazy about immigrants (which, ideologically, does not include myself), I remind them that one of the best ways to reduce unwanted immigration is to make other countries as liveable as possible. Stealing all their doctors and nurses does not help in that regard.

That said, as North America becomes more diverse, there is a legitimate need for an equally diverse cadre of health-care professionals, who might be expected to have a better sense/intuition about geographically or culturally-relevant health problems and good-fit approaches to treatment.
 
Steve A. 8/4/2018 8:36 AM
Quote Originally Posted by Mark Hammer View Post
One of the arguments served up in Canada, against having private-sector hospitals and fee-for-service, is that many of the better physicians would be lured away with the prospect of making more money, undermining the capacity of public hospitals to maintain their current level of service. Private dilution of public.
The private medical and insurance companies here represent such a large portion of our employment and GDP that we cannot expect to eliminate them any time soon.

And one of those "better physicians" was the radiation oncologist at the private facility which provided the radiation treatment for the tumor blocking the airway to my lower left lobe in 2013... "I recommend 33 high intensity sessions." A real money grub whose eyelids blinked like a cash register at our bi-weekly meetings. "Ka-ching!" In both my opinion and that of my thoracic surgeon it was those treatments that lead to the tumor at the base of my esophagus found in 2015 directly in line with the lung tumor. Although my oncologist was certain that because of its location radiation was not an option in 2015 that same radiation oncologist billed Kaiser $7000 for a special targeting scan (or should that be spelled "scam"???) that came to the same conclusion as did our in-house scan He had gone to the same high school 20 years after I did in 1969 in a community that had become almost exclusively upper middle class and higher... My father had been a union carpenter bringing home $182/week. My mother had worked in the accounting dept at the UC Berkeley book store where we got to bowl for free after church on Sundays.

In one respect, it is always possible to fill the gaps with "imported" health professionals. However:

a) there is nearly always a requirement that they engage in some sort of internship or residency program, to assure that their level of knowledge/practice is comparable to domestic standards, and there usually aren't enough such openings to go around - barely enough for our own med-school graduates;
Shouldn't universal health care expand those openings a bit? I always liked House M.D. because he did work at a teaching hospital...

b) I am not thrilled with the idea of North America "poaching" health-care professionals from other countries whose own health-care is often marginal at best. The idea that someone in Asia or Africa can't see a doctor AT ALL, just so someone here doesn't have to wait an extra month for an MRI on a nagging knee, or an extra hour in Emergency, does not sit well with me. For those not so crazy about immigrants (which, ideologically, does not include myself), I remind them that one of the best ways to reduce unwanted immigration is to make other countries as liveable as possible. Stealing all their doctors and nurses does not help in that regard.

That said, as North America becomes more diverse, there is a legitimate need for an equally diverse cadre of health-care professionals, who might be expected to have a better sense/intuition about geographically or culturally-relevant health problems and good-fit approaches to treatment.
I agree with your points, Mark, but many of the more bigoted patients don't realize that their "immigrant" nurse is second generation. "So where were you born?" "Oakland."
BTW one of the good uses of delivery drones (despite Amazon's plans. Ugh!) is delivering medical supplies to remote areas in the third world.

"Their doctors and nurses..." kinda ignores the fact that they should be free to immigrate here assuming that they can manage to get a visa. I think that the US and the UN should be generous in supporting medical training facilities throughout the developing countries to help balance out the equation.

We still are the world's wealthiest nation and I think that we should be very generous in spreading our wealth around. Some people are pissed off that we spent so much money helping rebuild Germany and Japan after WWII... our intentions were not strictly unselfish because we did want to build up strong trade partners with the Marshall Plan. F*ck Trump and screw his accusations that EU, Canada and Mexico are taking advantage of us. Just because Mr. T is a tight-fisted bastard who rips off his contractors and declares bankruptcy to save on his taxes doesn't mean that our country should present that attitude to the rest of the world. Being born on third base and thinking that you must have hit a triple is pure delusion!

So let us build more medical training facilities overseas and let the top graduates immigrate here if they so desire (and can get the needed visas.)

Steve A.
 
J M Fahey 8/4/2018 9:12 AM
It depends a lot on how are Doctors trained.
If trained like wannabe MBAs they will certainly focus onn the money aspect, period.

Ours follow the Classic European school, in particular the French one, and are focused on Public Service *and* permanent training, which among other things includes getting patients with all kinds of illness ... which statistically are more abbundant in tbhe lower Population classes, so ... you find them more often in Public Hospitals than in expensive health Cliniocs.

So the typical work shift for *any* Doctor here is: Public Hospital from 7 to 12 , Lunch Hour, Private practice, either at house Office or Private Clinic/Hospital from 13 to 19 or 20Hs, plus emergency calls at anyb time of the day.

You can and do get the exact same Doctor , although not same facilities, in the morning at a Public Hospital for free or at private practice in the afternoon.

Besides that, typically *very* respected University Professors or famous decorated Doctors setup in one or another Public Hospital according to their specialty, so other Doctors trying to rise in the Pyramid, even very "expensive" ones, queue up and fight to work in the Public Hospital for a Municipal salary, and even for free (if they are more than the regular designated quantity) both to learn from and be associated with some prestigious Doctor.

I have been treated for free, at Public Hospitals, by the *best* Doctors available, who typically perform initial Diagnostic and then design one of their disciples to carry on full treatment.
These disciples are very happy to mention they belong to famous "Dr xxxxxxx" īs Team.

So yes, they also have an Economic motivation, but the path to reach higher levels invariably includes significant and continuous Public Service.

It works very well I might add.
 
J M Fahey 8/4/2018 9:21 AM
Quote Originally Posted by tedmich View Post
i hope you live FOREVER Steve!
[ATTACH=CONFIG]49875[/ATTACH]
I am slightly worried about what that protective shield extension might be covering.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]49984[/ATTACH]
 
yldouright 8/4/2018 11:05 AM
Quote Originally Posted by J M Fahey
I am slightly worried about what that protective shield extension might be covering.
LOL, laughter is the best medicine. My best wishes and prayers continue @Steve A. and I hope the medication works for you better than the one I had suggested in an earlier post.
 
tedmich 8/4/2018 12:55 PM
just more of Sandahl Bergman's dance sculpted thighs!

This was from Conan, her best movie was probably this one

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was that a fly? No, its just no one.
 
Mark Hammer 8/4/2018 1:51 PM
Once a particular economic-administrative model gets entrenched enough, it becomes nigh impossible to change, because the roots are too deep and too disruptive to change. That's why the Canadian model can't change in the direction of the American one, and vice versa.

I concur that human migration is a normal expression of free will. It's the luring of foreign medical workers to the neglect of what their country of origin needs for the locals that bugs me. As I understand it, Philipines loses physicians to the U.S., who come here to work as nurses, because nurses here make more than doctors there. I wouldn't block anyone from leaving Philipines, but there is something just not right about poaching doctors from a place that is hard-pressed to produce them.