How Second Opinions Changed my life!
One day Second Opinions meant nothing, and the next, it Meant everything
At the time of this story I was only 26 years old. Before now, I had only shared this story with a few close friends. The local news picked up on my story but back in 2005 when the internet wasn't king. Now anything and everything is online. Luckily that includes Second Opinions. In sharing this story I hope to raise the awareness of those out there who may have otherwise not known what the value of a Second Opinion really can be.
The scariest moment of my life
We had just moved from the city to the Suburbs. Everything was different and new. Having just turned two, we had gotten our youngest one of those little car beds, a big boy bed it was probably four inches off of the ground from the top. It was a Sunday Morning, in August 2005 my almost five year old daughter ran into my room screaming, this was completely out of character for her. She was hysterical. “Jonathan is not moving! Run, come now!” So My husband and I hurried to his room.
Jonathan was in an odd position laying on the floor. No sound came from his mouth, only tears running down his face. We thought he fell out of bed. It seemed impossible he could hurt himself falling out of such a low bed. He was two years old, who knows anything can happen. I cannot describe the feeling I had in this moment. My husband, a doctor was terrified to pick him up. So I picked him up. We rushed to the car, I wasn’t even wearing shoes. We went to the nearest hospital emergency room. After the usual rigamarole, a doctor saw him. Imagine holding your motionless two year old and having a doctor tell you “Your child will be paralyzed for the rest of your life deal with it.” My young son’s whole life flashed through my mind. Learning to ride a bike for the first time. Playing sports, walking across the stage of his graduation. Do you understand what it is like to hear from a trained professional, a doctor, your child will never move again?
No Isn't good enough
I couldn’t and I wouldn’t “Deal with it.” While we were in the ER, Michael, who worked as a radiologist at an imaging center at the time, called the owner and told him what happened.
The imaging center was regularly closed on Sundays. The owner opened the Imaging center and asked employees to come in and help run the CT and MRI scans. Michael saw nothing and the owner, also radiologist himself saw nothing. They repeated the scans 3 times. There was nothing to be seen. No apparent cause.
Paralysis is a Serious Diagnosis
I couldn’t accept no, it didn’t seem possible that there was no answer other than a life of paralysis.
Mike began to call friends and colleagues even former classmates. This time we drove to an ER in the city , about 3 hours away where his colleagues worked. They were getting ready to do additional imaging when a pediatric specialist walked up to us. The most amazing moment of my life. Jonathan was laying there motionless with tears still streaming down his cheeks. He said “what a beautiful baby. Look at those eyes.” He came up to him and put his hands on his neck, said “oh here’s the spasm!” and he asked, do you have a history of spasms? I called my father and asked him if he had ever had ever had spasms. He said, yes he had them all of his life. The doctor diagnosed my son with congenital torticolis. congenital torticollis, the muscle that extends down the side of the neck - the sternocleidomastoid muscle -- is tight and shortened. He gave us a prescription and in a few days he was back to normal I would give everything to that doctor! His Second Opinion saved my life. I don’t know what I would have done if my son had been paralyzed.
Second Opinion of a lifetime
As we stood there, with a final moment of relief, Mike said, “do you know how many people there are like us? We need to put Second Opinions online. We need to have a second opinions service that everyone can have access to.” That is the story of how Second Opinions changed my life.