Pam’s Neurosurgery Visit

We’re back from seeing Pam’s neurosurgeon. In contrast to the ophthalmologist we saw yesterday, this Dr. and his staff were outstanding. Friendly, pleasant and approachable. The Dr. himself spent time explaining and asking appropriate questions.

He told us that he sub-specializes in spinal diseases and surgery. He is referring us to another neurosurgeon at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh who sub-specializes in nothing but brain disorders.

She has an arachnoid cyst in the posterior fossa of the brain.

He also wants her to see an orthopedic surgeon for her shoulders and neck as well as a physiatrist. He also thinks that traction on her neck might be helpful.

Pam is obviously distraught and overwhelmed with all the news particularly with the financial side of it. I lost 90% of my salary when I had to retire. Therefore, physical therapy is an impossible option since the copay is $20 for each visit. Going even once/month cuts into our budget let alone going 2-3x/week. She’s worried about how we will pay for all of the Dr.’s visits and further treatment.

I’ve been very supportive and basically told her that her health is more important. If our credit rating drops, then so be it. Credit bureaus try to put the fear of God into us, but they can’t put us in jail or send us to hell! Having a low credit score doesn’t keep us out of going to Heaven. And the Lord only knows how many millions out there who are in the same financial boat with a fixed income.

"My God will use his wonderful riches in Christ Jesus to give you everything you need."   Philippians 4:19

She is frustrated because she thought she would walk in and get it "fixed." I’ve explained to her that life and our bodies are not that simplistic and that this Dr. covered all bases and was thorough and comprehensive.

Chad is off today, so he took her out and about to ‘window shop.’ Hope it helps to keep her mind occupied.


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9 Responses

  1. I’m so sad to read about this, David. I find it hard to believe that a country as wealthy as America, that has donated so many $billions in aid to other countries can’t look after the wellbeing of its own better than this. And yes to credit rating. Thank God that this is not where ‘its at’ – we’re pilgrims on our way to Somewhere and Someone far, far better than we can imagine. I’ll pray hard about this. Love, Louise

    • Thanks Louise. Appreciate it!

  2. My heart goes out to Pam and all of you. Wishing you all the best. Yet on to another doctor. I wonder why your next specialist is a ‘sub’ doctor and not a specialist in the field needed. Will you just spend money going through doctors until you get to the right specialist for Pam??

    Understand your money concerns. I don’t get things done for myself for same reasons. You know my situation. My husband isn’t as thoughtful as you are Dave, talking to your wife as you are…’re a gem! kat

    • I think this next neurosurgeon will be the final one.

  3. Have you thought about seeing a Naturopath Doctor? One may be able to help with out performing expensive surgery. It’s worth a try.

    I will keep you both in my prayers, that a miracle occurs.

  4. I am sorry you have financial worries as well as health worries. This seems particularly hard given your profession. The NHS in the UK is not perfect, and of course it is not possible for every citizen to have the most expensive treatment for every problem, but it is (still) there, and there for everyone irrespective of their financial position, which is a great comfort. I just hope that Obama can come up with something for US citizens which is better than the current system .

    However that isn’t going to help you today or tomorrow. My thoughts are with you. Thank you for telling us the news.

  5. Dear David and Pam,

    What a heart wrenching situation. I am so sorry. Dear Pam!

    David, we faced over three hundred thousand in medical bills, and neither, I, nor my Don was unable to work. He had just had his second open heart surgery. It was before we were old enough to collect Social Security. We both applied for dissability. We had to be examined by doctors, and get a lawyer to help us. That worked.

    We saw that we were going to loose the equity in our home, so we sold it within 3 weeks, and gave everything we had to
    our children. We moved into a travel trailer. (Put off every weight that entangled us** Heb. 12:1)

    I wrote letters to every doctor and hospital, explaining our situation, and told them how much we could pay each month. We kept our word. Only one place became nasty, and sent our bill to a collection agency. I sent them a small amount each month, as I had promised. I kept accurate records, and told them they didn’t need to send bills each month as that cost. I continued to send payments until they were paid.

    It was rough, but we held our heads up in knowing our credit, and hence our good name was not ruined. We paid all the bills off slowly but surely, and have well over 800 credit rating. And we are in a small home once again.

    It can be done. We are proof. I hope something similar will help your situation.

    Again, I am terribly sorry, and I pray that all will work out well for both of you.

    A heart full of love for you,

  6. Dear David, you and Pam will continue to be in my thoughts and prayers, as always. I hope the matter of her health is solved soon. I guess the problem is that neither of you qualifies for Medicare yet so your insurance is getting a big chunk and not giving you much in return.
    Somebody mentioned a naturopath, and that reminded me of a fall that I had many years ago which left me unable to move. I went to a chiropractor and he made it worse. Then to a naturopath -he was old and totally blind, but he had healing in his hands! Maybe you should try one. Surely, that will mean spending some money too…
    I hope this matter of our healthcare is resolved soon on the “high places”!
    A loving hug to both of you,

  7. I’ve been so busy with family I just read this post. Please know I am praying extra for y’all!!!! For wisdom, for provision, for comfort, and for His wonderful peace that passes all understanding!

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