I have lived with tonsillitis for most of my life. I grew up believing the pastilles they gave you to dumb it were sweeties I had them so often. Subsequently after years of infection, my tonsils look like the surface of the moon with their pits and craters!
About a month ago, after a really bad dose of tonsillitis, I took the bull by the horns and went to the doctors and asked for a referral to get my tonsils removed. Now, as you may or may not be aware, I hate the doctors. I am totally petrified of them. I can go to the dentist no problem, but the doctors scare me stiff. It therefore took a lot of courage to make the appointment, let a lone go and ask for what I wanted. The clinic we use, has over a dozen doctors so it really is pot luck as to who you see. The one I went to was one I had taken the boys to for various ailments and so I knew she was someone who would listen. I explained my situation and much to my relief she took my concerns seriously and agreed to refer me.
I got an appointment through for yesterday. Luckily it was at the community hospital just 6 miles away as going to the main city hospital is a parking nightmare! I of course had mentally prepared myself for a fight. To get the referral was too easy so I wasn’t expecting plain sailing now. The consultant couldn’t have been more pleasant. He took less than 30 seconds to ask why I had waited all this time to get them removed! He was shocked that no doctor in 40 years had suggested it to me. He said the state they were in meant there was likely constant infection in my throat! No wonder I find breathing and swallowing difficult at times!! Straight away he filled out the paperwork to get me on the waiting list for surgery.
He then spent the next 10 minutes describing how the pain relief they would give me afterwards would barely touch the pain there would be! I listened to what he was saying but I think all I could hear was it is going to hurt really bad for about 10 days and then no more tonsillitis! The pain I can cope with if it means I wont wake up in the middle of the night because I can’t swallow and therefore can’t catch my breath!
Afterwards I had some assessment questions with the nurse. My BMI was of course too high, but I proudly told her about my weight loss, and we spent the next quarter of an hour talking about the app I use to track what I eat! My blood pressure was ridiculously high. I can’t say I was surprised, I was in a hospital just having been given the exciting (maybe not the right word) news that after a 40 year wait I was going lose my tonsils. Of course my blood pressure was up. The nurse said it might be an idea to go to the GP and talk to him about it.
I came out of the surgery feeling really proud of myself for having asked for what I needed and got it! This might sound silly but I think I couldn’t have done that before the boys, where you are constantly asking the doctors for referrals to various departments. They are my strength.
I was lucky enough to get a cancellation with my own GP ( I think it’s the first time I’ve seen him in maybe 8 years), for this morning. I explained the situation to him. He took my BP and said it was a little elevated but nowhere near what it had been yesterday. He did however think it was worth checking there were no underlying reasons for it. I therefore have to have blood tests and an ECG just to check my heart is ok. Now telling me something like that isn’t going to raise my blood pressure even higher is it!!! Any how, the first available appointment for that is the end of the month, and then a week later to go back to discuss it with the GP. Hopefully by then, I will have lost some more weight which will help my BMI if nothing else!
I’m not sure if all this will result in having the operation delayed. I’m hoping it wont, but knowing my luck, things have gone too smoothly so far there has to be a bump in the road somewhere! But is this operation urgent? Not urgent, but desirable, because after all I have waited 40 years for it so whats a few extra weeks going to matter!