No Insurance - Yet You Need Medical Help
The pain started again yesterday. I was worried that it would. My face hurts. I know there's a joke that goes with that line? Does your face hurt? It's killing me. I can laugh at the joke but for me it is no laughing matter. I had been unemployed and working temp for the last few years during the down economy. Last November I got a job and then waited the three months for my medical coverage to begin. During those months of waiting the pain started. I knew what it was. A sinus infection. I used to get them often. I had been lucky for the last several years and had not had a recurrence of the sinus problems.
Once the insurance kicked in I went to the doctor. "You need to see a specialist" she told me. I knew she would tell me that. I didn't ask for any pain medication, although at times the pain inside my face was excruciating and incapacitating. I did ask for an antibiotic. Amoxicillin usually helped in the past. Once I would start the antibiotics, the pain would gradually decrease as the infection began to be battled. She did give me a drug I had never tried. It was called Bactrim. Bactrim is a sulfur based drug and for me it didn't seem to help. I finished the medication as I waited the three weeks for the specialist to see me.
Once the ear nose and throat doctor was able to see me, he gave me augmentin. I had tried augmentin before and found that it was very rough on my stomach. I would wake up at night from the sound and feel of my stomach churning. "It's a powerful drug" the doctor told me, "and I want you to take it for 30 days". I took the prescription to the pharmacist and had it filled. I didn't look at the bottle until I got home. Printed on the label was the name for a generic Amoxicillin. Dispappointment set in a bit. I wanted the Augmentin this time. The insurance company wouldn't cover the cost of the Augmentin and Amoxicillin was automatically substituted.
The sinus doctor also told me I needed a cat scan. I scheduled that for two weeks later. As the date approached I had a bit of fear. The specialist had told me that he could see polyps inside my sinuses. "Polyps are very rarely cancerous" he told me. Hearing this was somewhat reassuring but still ... how many polyps were inside my face? At least now I knew what the source of the pain was.
I lost my job as the 30 days of antibiotics were being taken. I could tell that the amoxicillin was helping. For the first time in six months my face was not in constant pain. The prescription wore out and I was scheduled for a follow up. Today I had to cancel the follow up. The pain is building inside my face and I am scared. What happens if indeed I have cancerous polyps inside my sinuses? What can I do? I have no ability to pay for medical procedures? I have no job. I have no insurance.
All my life I have worked hard and had good jobs. As I turn 50 I think to myself "Will I get a job soon and get some medical coverage?" Will I have to wait another 90 days after securing employment to get this pain treated? I have two yound boys. I try to hide the fact that thinking these thoughts scares the hell out of me.