Monday, January 31, 2011

A Doctor a Day...

Last week I didn't eat any apples, couldn't, except for Tuesday that is.

You see, last week I had an appointment with a doctor of one kind or another every day (except for Tuesday) and as the saying goes;

An apple a day keeps the doctor away

So surely the reverse can be true as well?

I realise that this sounds rather extreme, a doctor every day bar one, and I'm in the peak of health too...

It started on Monday, I had to go and see my Hausartz (GP) had made the appointment the previous Friday and then on the day turned up and pretty much walked straight in, I commented to Herr Doktor Deusse how different the health care systems are in England and Germany, how so he enquired, so I pointed out that with the NHS you would probably have to wait a week for an appointment (by which time you're probably feeling a lot better - cunning plan eh?) and then you'd wait again in the waiting room surrounded by sick people, spreading their bugs all around them. He's planning to tell all his patients who have the temerity to complain* how it is in other countries. Anyway all I wanted was a referral to get my knee scanned** and the Dok was quite happy to provide this.

Tuesday, although I didn't see any docs I did speak to 2, first my friendly knee surgeon*** rang me with the number for the radiologist their clinic uses, then I rang said radiologist and made the appointment for an MRI (MRT here) scan.

Wednesday, I had an appointment with Doktor Zwez, or Barbie as we refer to her in our house, the dentist, for an hour of oral torture. She seems to be under the impression that I have very sensitive teeth, admittedly there is one tooth that can be a little...temperamental, shall we say, but I defy anyone to lie there in the chair of pain and not wince and yelp when their gums are being poked by a pointy metal stick.

Thursday, my appointment with the radiologist and the MRI scan. I hadn't had one before but knew enough to know that thoughtful dressing would be important as anything metallic would have to be removed, therefore no jeans or underwired bras, unless I wanted to strip and don a hospital gown...I was pretty proud of myself, all I had to take off was my jewelry. As for the scan itself - I'm almost curious to know how the hell it works, I say almost because I'm quite sure that the explanation would get very scientific very quickly and leave me nodding mindlessly. I had to lie on a 'bed' and after being given headphones (because of the noise) and a panic button, I was told it would take 15 minutes then I was slid feet first into a narrow tube. I lay there, day dreaming and fretting over whether the loops on my camisole that looked and felt like plastic were actually plastic and not metal, until the banging and clopping noises started almost making me jump. Finally it was done and I got to see the sections through my knee that this machine had taken, weird.

Friday, the final day of the working week and I had to leave a very nice and relaxing expat breakfast to go for my Frauenartz**** appointment. This is like a health check up and should happen every year or twice a year if you're German/obsessive/have a fetish for sitting in chairs with stirrups wearing no pants. Anyway, it's over and done with for another 12 months as is my week of dealing with the medical profession.

* but they're German, so of course they'll complain.
** knee has been unwell since Christmas when I smashed it down onto a wooden step - hasten to add that I didn't break either of the bottles of wine I was carrying at the time.
*** Lucky eh? I have a friend who specialises in knee and hip surgery, so when my knee didn't seem to be getting better I got him to have a feel.
**** literally means 'ladies doctor' but mainly gynaecologist.

Word for the day: das Gesundheitssystem - health care system


Jayne said...

I reckon it's a good thing that you got all the medical issues over & done with in a week :-) Do you have like a NHS system over there or is everything privatised? What's the diagnosis on your knee?

I started off this year in a most 'unhealthy' way! First off it was dysentery, then I got a urinary tract infection, then had another growth cut out of my lower back. The dysentery & UTI cleared up with antibiotics, the growth was another basal cell carcinoma & I had to go back & have a bit more cut out, as the path lab declared the 'edges' weren't clear. *sigh*
I hope February is going to be better!

verena said...

Oh Jayne, I hope your Feb is better than January too...fingers crossed.
Medical care here is half 'n half. You can go completely private or you can choose how much you 'top up' on the system, just pay for the extras you want...after witnessing the slow progress of the NHS the speed here is amazing!

Ed said...

Unless it's bleeding uncontrollably, weeping with pus, sticking out of the flesh, restricting movement or forcing a sprint towards the WC 7 days in a row, I'm not going to the quacks here