24 years is almost half of my lifetime!
So what, why is that significant?
Well, the other day I called the surgery for a repeat prescription of Pentasa and they set me up with the ability to order them online using a service in the UK called systmonline.
I received a login and password and completed the order for more drugs, simple, convenient and straightforward. While I was on the website I noticed that I could request authorisation to view my medical records online so I submitted my request to the Surgery staff.
I’d almost forgotten about making the request, I just randomly checked back on the website a couple of days later and found my records were available to view! I was curious how far back they went and started searching through my records.
What I found reminded me how long I’ve had bowel (and digestive) problems for and I really started to wonder if some obvious, repetitive and long term problems had probably been overlooked for years, overlooked by me, by doctors and by consultants.
I genuinely believe that because I’m always one to downplay things and never want to make a fuss, because I tend to hide my problems and just try and get on with things, that the early signs of this disease were left untreated and building up for over twenty years. Entirely my own fault!
Sure I had things investigated, I had appointments over the years and any immediate issues were taken seriously, but the moment things felt easier, I would tell medics that ‘I was fine now’ and the urgency went away for them to continue attempts to diagnose my problems.
The point of this post is that if you have on-going medical issues or longer term health concerns I suggest that you gain access to your medical records so that you can see if there is a pattern for yourself, enabling you to bring this to your GP’s attention.
I really can’t urge you strongly enough to gain access to this system, simply ask the reception staff at your doctor’s surgery.
Do it today!
The screenshots are random snapshots dating from 1992 (There are many more ‘incidents’). My diagnosis was finally made in October 2016.
I wonder how many other people are out there right now with ongoing suffering that have no diagnosis or treatment yet?
I’m betting it’s quite a lot! Don’t downplay your symptoms like I did, don’t be like me and not want to be a burden or make a fuss, don’t assume that you’re bothering doctors because they’re very busy and have people worse off to deal with.
Ask for help and ask as often as you feel you need to. It’s your health, it’s your well being and it’s you’re suffering if you don’t!
I can’t believe I felt so awkward, I needed fixing but I didn’t want to be a nuisance.
If it was my car. I’d book it in for work as soon as it wasn’t running properly, if it still wasn’t fixed, I’d take it back again and again until it was and I wouldn’t feel at all guilty about doing so!
Shame on me for not giving my body the same respect, care and attention!
Thanks for reading and please add your comments below 🙂