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HELP What Can You Do If You "Need" Surgery and Your Insurance Won't Cover It?
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  1. #1
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    5 What Can You Do If You "Need" Surgery and Your Insurance Won't Cover It?

    My daughter recently found out her gall bladder is not functioning. She is in a lot of pain and the doctor told her it has to come out.

    Her doctor said he could do an out-patient procedure that is a small incision and she'd miss 2 weeks of work.

    Or if needed they will do an in-patient procedure that is much more severe. Hospital stay 4 days and 6 weeks loss of work. But she has to come up with $2000 just to get in the hospital door. Yes, she does have insurance but it looks like it sucks.

    Question is....what can she do to get a needed surgery with no money? None of us has anywhere near $2000 to get her in.

    Help please

    I suggested if push comes to shove and it has, that she should have a severe gb attack in the middle of the night and go the emergency room and I believe they have to take you. Isn't that how welfare and illegals do it that have no money?
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  2. #2
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    Normally, the way it works for someone with insurance (no matter how "sucky") is as follows:

    The person gives their insurance information to the provider. After the procedure, the provider bills the insurance company. The company pays its part and sends you the bill for the rest. You pay that balance over time. But the procedure was already performed.

  3. #3
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    Just talked to her and it seems the hospital already has all her insurance info.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    she needs to seek an emergency visit. I pray she can have the surgery as it is very painfull to have a gall blader issue.

    And I just need to say, WHAT A CROCK that they will not get her in untill she has the $2000. I say call your state rep and report this. And call the insurer yourself and check if the info is correct.

    Sending prayers your way

  5. #5
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    Are you talking about insurance CO-PAYS?
    I don't know of any insurance that would not pay for a needed gall bladder removal.
    You say $2000 for an INPATIENT removal
    How much for the outpatient removal?

    Like anything, if you need it, get it and deal with the bills later.
    If you think THAT is expensive just investigate what COMPLICATIONS from NOT getting a bad gall bladder removed can cost you.
    Poison Ivy is still Poison Ivy even if you transplant it into a rose garden and call it a rose.

  6. #6
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    tell her to eat a BLAND diet with no fats in it.

    That will help with the pain.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hansa44 View Post
    Just talked to her and it seems the hospital already has all her insurance info.


    My mind was thinking what Dennis said. Do you know what type insurance it is? I can understand insurances not paying for all of it and the hospital will help you and allow you to pay the balances over time in most cases. Health insurance should cover gall bladder surgery.
    I sure hope my ship comes in before my dock rots.

  8. #8
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    Thank you everyone. All advice is appreciated so please don't stop.

    I am giving her a link to this thread so she can read all of this herself and go from there.

    I imagine she is going to be impressed. I keep telling her what a great forum TB2K is.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  9. #9
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    My wife had hers taken out Labor Day '09 (of course it was a holiday) - insane pain and went to the ER, it was out a few hours later. They can do it laproscopicaly (sp?), she had 4 very small incisions which healed nicely, surgery at 3pm and was discharged at 10pm (no joke!). It was inflamed to the point of almost exploding according to the doctor, but your case doesn't seem as urgent. Two follow-ups after that to remove the stitches and makes sure everything was ok, and she was good to go.

    Regardless of the insurance issues, I highly recommend the lapro-method versus one large incision. I ditto what Dennis said - the insurance will at the very least knock down the inflated bill - you know, where they bill $15k and insurance says "no, its $4000". Then whatever is left you pay, even if its $50/mo for 20 years :P

    However keep in mind that once it's removed, eating a high-fat meal will cause.. uh... goose-like #2's since you won't break down the fats as effectively

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Hansa44 View Post
    But she has to come up with $2000 just to get in the hospital door. Yes, she does have insurance but it looks like it sucks.

    Question is....what can she do to get a needed surgery with no money? None of us has anywhere near $2000 to get her in.
    $2,000 isn't that much money. No one has decent paid off vehicles to even go the title loan way? What about credit cards? Firearms or spare ammo they can sell?

    Before any of the above though, every single major city in every major state usually has some sort of "poor hospital" or "county hospital" or "state hospital." This is where she will need to go for treatment. They will work with her, but if they find out she makes OK money, they may want some % upfront. If they see she has a smart phone for a cell phone, they may not believe her story.

    I would bring two years tax forms, current pay stubs, last three months of bills and loans. Obviously if they see she drives a newer car, or has a $100/month cable bill, they may not like that. I'm not really sure how they classify you as poor, I know showing a welfare card almost always works in these sorts of issues. Our "poor" hospital will: #1: Give you a decent % deduction is paying on your own. #2: I've heard they won't send you to collections so long as you make regular payments of something. Of course if she has a job with a steady paycheck and they feel she isn't paying what she could, they could end up going for a garnishment order. Also, some state funded or local funded hospitals may put a garnishment on any tax returns as well...something to think about.

  11. #11
    Ok I've been dealing with this for a looong time and just now getting around to a possible surgery too. I don't know the financial aspect, we have insurance now and suppose we'll be billed, but here's what will help to live with it for now,

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------


    DO NOT EAT ANY DAIRY, including cheese, butter, ice cream, milk, cream, yogurt, creamy salad dressings, or any fat of any kind


    DRINK LOTS OF APPLE JUICE AND APPLE CIDER
    As much as you can! - It really helps!


    Try not to eat. But when you HAVE to eat here's my list of ok foods;


    Apples, applesauce, and pears are all very helpful

    Salad. Try to get dandelion greens in them.

    The only salad dressing you can use is Vinegrette dressing.

    Baked potato (no toppings)
    Sweet potato (no toppings)
    Carrots


    When you can eat a little more;


    cereal
    crackers
    veggies (green beans, greens, corn, peas)
    soda pop


    Remember -
    DO NOT EAT ANY DAIRY, including cheese, butter, ice cream, milk, cream, yogurt, creamy salad dressings, or any fat of any kind


    When you're feeling better you'll have to experiment. Sometimes I can handle these things, some sends me into an attack, it's just a gamble.


    Non-dairy bean burrito
    Tomato soup
    Other soups
    Bread sticks and Saskarooni tomato sauce
    oven baked french fries and ketchup
    some non-fat milk on cereal, do not drink the milk though
    peanut butter and jelly sandwich
    cooked egg
    very lean meat


    GETTING THROUGH AN ATTACK:

    When you're hurting too bad it helps to pace the floor, if you're exhausted lean up against the wall, bed, chair or sofa either standing or kneeling

    Sometimes a hot bath with epsom salts can help soothe - wet a washcloth and put it on your side while you soak, you may last in the bath only for a little while but then it's back to pacing the floor again


    TO EASE THE PAIN AND CRAMPS;

    A dose of epsom salts in a glass of water to drink - it has magnesium
    OR Maalox that has magnesium in it will help

    Sometimes I take an advil or ibuprofen, but if the doctors need to operate soon that could cause a problem. Don't take it within a week before surgery.


    When you're having an attack it's easy to become dehydrated. Mineral water is good to drink and you can get some magnesium from it too.


    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    There's gall bladder diets you can look up online to get a more thorough list of what you can and cannot eat.

    There's gall stone cleanses you can look online up if you want to try. It pretty much involves fasting, drinking lots of apple juice, then at night time rotate drinking epsom salt water and olive oil and spending the night trying to pass the stones.


    ***Warning - If a stone were to get stuck in your bile duct leading out from your gall bladder it can cause very serious complications such as infection, pancreatis, and jaundice. If you have symptoms of yellowing eyes or fever, then you need immediate medical care.

  12. #12
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    Definitely go the outpatient route if at all possible. It's cheaper, less pain and shorter recovery times. An inpatient, open procedure is something you do only if the problem is too serious for laparoscopic.

    Also check to see whether cholecystectomy (laparoscopic or open) requires preapproval from the insurance company for coverage; some non-emergent procedures do.

    An emergency visit will only result in immediate surgery if her condition is truly serious - otherwise she'll just be referred for outpatient surgery and be back where she started with another bill from the ER. I know it's painful, but by itself painful does not equal life-threatening, and therefore it's not emergent - just very unpleasant.

    Try not to blame the hospital too much, a lot of them are closer to broke than you think and are trying to keep the lights on. I know charity care and Medicare are killing our budget worse every year. No hospital likes to turn away patients, but they can only afford to write off so much before they have to close the doors. It costs A LOT to run that equipment, pay the utilities, and pay the support staff. A lot of insurance payments (and of course Medicare) only cover part of it.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich30N90W View Post
    My wife had hers taken out Labor Day '09 (of course it was a holiday) - insane pain and went to the ER, it was out a few hours later. They can do it laproscopicaly (sp?), she had 4 very small incisions which healed nicely, surgery at 3pm and was discharged at 10pm (no joke!). It was inflamed to the point of almost exploding according to the doctor, but your case doesn't seem as urgent. Two follow-ups after that to remove the stitches and makes sure everything was ok, and she was good to go.

    Regardless of the insurance issues, I highly recommend the lapro-method versus one large incision. I ditto what Dennis said - the insurance will at the very least knock down the inflated bill - you know, where they bill $15k and insurance says "no, its $4000". Then whatever is left you pay, even if its $50/mo for 20 years :P

    However keep in mind that once it's removed, eating a high-fat meal will cause.. uh... goose-like #2's since you won't break down the fats as effectively
    Wait until she has an attack, get her to the ER. They will take it out and bill you or your insurance. I put mine off for as long as possible but finally had to go in '08. Like above, lapro, even though it was to the point of bursting and was completely bound to me with scar tissue all around. Had a stone the size of a walnut but still did lapro, home the same day, up and around a week later. Take it from someone that waited 8 months of attacks to get it out, it doesn't get better but does get progressively worse. Have her be prepared for still having pain that feels like attacks after for a while but not quite as bad. Also, many after having it out, have to run to the bathroom after some meals. That can get better with time but not fun at first. Prayers for her.

    and for the one that said $2000 is not much money.... I guess that depends on how much is in your pocket or how much you have coming in. For some, it's the same as 20,000... when you don't have it, you don't have it.
    Stephanie
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by sopo View Post
    Wait until she has an attack, get her to the ER. They will take it out and bill you or your insurance. I put mine off for as long as possible but finally had to go in '08. Like above, lapro, even though it was to the point of bursting and was completely bound to me with scar tissue all around. Had a stone the size of a walnut but still did lapro, home the same day, up and around a week later. Take it from someone that waited 8 months of attacks to get it out, it doesn't get better but does get progressively worse. Have her be prepared for still having pain that feels like attacks after for a while but not quite as bad. Also, many after having it out, have to run to the bathroom after some meals. That can get better with time but not fun at first. Prayers for her.

    and for the one that said $2000 is not much money.... I guess that depends on how much is in your pocket or how much you have coming in. For some, it's the same as 20,000... when you don't have it, you don't have it.

    According to the xray and other tests there are no stones. Just a non-functioning gb.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  15. #15
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    HAS SHE HAD HER APPENDIX OUT?

    They MISSED my infected appendix and removed my gall bladder and the pain continued for MONTHS.
    Finally I went to emergency months later with the same pain and after cat scan blood tests and every other test they didnt know what was wrong with me and just before they were to send me home something prompted me to ASK THE DOCTOR TO CHECK YOUR APPENDIX.

    He scowled at me said my white count was not high and I didn't have a fever but to shut me up he reached over and pressed down on my appendix, which made me scream when he suddenly let go. HE said OMG she DOES have a '"Hot appendix!" Schedule surgery immediately. It was black and gangrenous when they took it out and had caused peritonitis but had not actually burst yet. I was lucky not to be pooping into a colostomy bag afterwards. So, IT IS POSSIBLE to have appendicitis for months, it is called "chronic appendicitis and can suddenly get much worse. I First had appendicitis when I was a child, but the rural doctor decided to give me strong antibiotics and paragoric for the pain and cramping instead of taking it out.
    Poison Ivy is still Poison Ivy even if you transplant it into a rose garden and call it a rose.

  16. #16
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    Thanks aif. Will definitely have it checked out.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  17. #17
    Be *very* careful letting the attacks go on without surgery for too long. When the gallbladder is not functional or the ducts become plugged you can easily trigger pancreatitis which is life threatening, and feels the same as a really bad gallbladder attack. I almost died of pancreatitis when I was uninsured and not getting my gallbladder removed. By the time they finally drug me to the ER, I was within a few hours of death the physician said. I had to have IV antibiotics for two days prior to surgery as I had become so infected.

    I had the lappy procedure and there was a very quick recovery and the only problem afterward was the previously mentioned horrible diahreaha when I was stupid enough to eat anything with fat content.

  18. #18
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    I just went to a dr appt today at a clinic and I had to pay$150 upfront for the visit. I don't have insurance, and the same appt I had that someone with gov insurance cost them nothing, medicare $25 for the visit. I work pay taxes and pay more taxes. I just pay and pray

  19. #19
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    1) Understand that MOST insurance companies require pre-certifications to pay for surgeries. Meaning if they didn't get a certification of medical need and didn't certify the need, the bill will NOT get paid. PERIOD. it's in the handbook for your insurance policy.

    2) What she needs is a certification of medical need. the doctor should be able to handle that for her. If for whatever reason the doc can't, then y'all need to contact the insurance company's patient ombudsman to help with the certification.


    3 And yep, STRONGLY reccomend the Lap-Coley (laproscopic collecystectomy). recovery is WAY faster, pain level is WAY lower.
    "I must not fear.
    Fear is the mind-killer.
    Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
    I will face my fear.
    I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
    And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
    Where the fear has gone there will be nothing....only I will remain"

    Frank Herbert "Dune" "Bene Gesserit Anti-Fear Litany"


    http://bluemudpatriot.wordpress.com/

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Hansa44 View Post
    According to the xray and other tests there are no stones. Just a non-functioning gb.
    I've read it's possible to still have stones and them to not show up on some tests.

    Mrs.Cw

  21. #21
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    If there's a choice go with laparoscopic removal, it's really not bad. I had an ovary (with a big cyst on it) taken out last fall that way and 3 hours after surgery I was at home cooking myself scrambled eggs. After 1 week I was good enough move around, just couldn't pick anything up.
    A full incision is a MUCH bigger deal.

    If she has insurance and they should cover it but aren't you're going to have to fight for it. The doc is going to have to certify that it needs to come out, they won't operate without a preauth.

    Not sure how to handle this if no insurance, we've been lucky to have it (pay through the nose, but it's still there). I'd try to haggle a cash rate and a payment plan with the hospital and surgeons.
    "Send lawyers, guns and money - the s**t has hit the fan" --Warren Zevon

  22. #22
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    Her doctor has already told her it would be a laparoscopic removal. And that is the outpatient procedure wherein lies the problem with the ins. company. They want $2000. co-pay I guess but I just called her and she is in bed. Her son said she's in a lot of pain and had to lie down.

    This whole issue may get solved very soon. And I can't go up to see her. She's only a block away but I was coughing so much the last 2 days I did not want to infect her with anything.

    Man....when it rains it pours. ND I will definitely speak to her about the certification of medical need right away.

    By the way...don't worry about her not getting to the hospital in time. She is surrounded by a very loving family watching her like a hawk right now. They'll carry her out if need be even if she doesn't want to go.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  23. #23
    Would the hospital agree to a payment plan? Perhaps she could go that route.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by celtic-cat View Post
    Be *very* careful letting the attacks go on without surgery for too long. When the gallbladder is not functional or the ducts become plugged you can easily trigger pancreatitis which is life threatening, and feels the same as a really bad gallbladder attack. I almost died of pancreatitis when I was uninsured and not getting my gallbladder removed. By the time they finally drug me to the ER, I was within a few hours of death the physician said. I had to have IV antibiotics for two days prior to surgery as I had become so infected.

    I had the lappy procedure and there was a very quick recovery and the only problem afterward was the previously mentioned horrible diahreaha when I was stupid enough to eat anything with fat content.
    A friend had the same thing happen. Very, very dangerous. (I hope I never need surgery as I have no heath insurance, can't afford any, and have very little money...)
    Asato Ma Sad Gamaya
    Tamaso Ma Jyotir Gamaya

    Leave illusion, come to the Truth
    Leave the darkness, come to the Light

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Be Well View Post
    A friend had the same thing happen. Very, very dangerous. (I hope I never need surgery as I have no heath insurance, can't afford any, and have very little money...)
    Amen to that!

    If you have no insurance then you'll have to pay for it yourself somehow. I know from experience that they can and do jack the prices out of sight for those of us without insurance. I've done alot of research on this stuff getting as sick as I did almost 2 years ago now. It pays to shop around and get an idea of what the different hospitals charge. You can compare those prices with online searches too.

    I also know that most hospitals have grants for people without insurance from organizations such as Haliburton. I think the way it works is they give so much to the hospitals and when it's gone it's gone. I believe they get those grants the first of the year as in January. You may be able to discuss this with a hospital financial advisor. They certainly have them on staff.

    Another thing I did was checked on this site against how badly they were going to rip me off. They obviously don't like this information to be known either so enter at your own risk.

    http://health.yahoo.net/articles/hea...pitals-2011-12
    http://www.hospitalvictims.com/

    And a couple more links...

    http://cleanse-nourish-heal.org/desc...llbladder.html
    http://www.earthclinic.com/CURES/gal...r_attacks.html
    "Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food." Hippocrates

    ~~~ http://www.VictoriaColumbus.com ~~~

    Real friendship, real love and real compassion doesn't have an agenda.

  26. #26
    Thank you, Vicki. I hope I never need to know this stuff but things come out of the blue sometimes. And that's another reason I'm trying to take of health as much as possible via herbs, diet, exercise etc so I won't have to decide how to pay for surgery or other medical interventions!

    I re-started hatha yoga recently and boy oh boy does it feel good!!! Helps not just with muscles and bones and strenght but works on the internal organs as well.
    Asato Ma Sad Gamaya
    Tamaso Ma Jyotir Gamaya

    Leave illusion, come to the Truth
    Leave the darkness, come to the Light

  27. #27
    Vicki,

    I'm very interested to hear more of your experiences with this if you wouldn't mind sharing.

    How long did you have symptoms, the intervals and severity?
    What tests did you have done?
    What home treatments did you do?
    Did you get yours taken out - what lead to that decision?
    What's the average costs you've found? (laproscopic and tests)

    ... I had an ultrasound and I'm scheduled for surgery in January... I am so hesitant and don't want to go through with the surgery!

    I have one huge stone that keeps blocking my gall bladder and two smaller ones. There wasn't any gravel that showed on the ultrasound, so I don't think I'm continually making them.

    I passed one pea sized stone in April 2010 three weeks after my first attack. It seemed the fasting with only salad and apple juice dissolved it because the edges looked like wet chalk - and it was slightly smashed looking, possibly from being squeezed in the tubes, but now I am afraid to try to pass this huge stone. It looks way too big to get through the ducts. I'm guessing like 1/8th the size of my gall bladder, so it would take A LOT of dissolving.

    But I want one more chance to save my gall bladder. The Doctor didn't want to discuss losing just the stones because they reoccur in 90% of people. I just want to get rid of these 3 stones and then if they come back then I'd want surgery.

    I'm thinking about trying to dissolve it enough to pass into the ducts and if it gets stuck let them crack it up and pull it out of the tube with a scope. I just don't know though, that's so risky...

    And if there's no way to get rid of the stones I will do surgery because I don't want more attacks. I'm only willing to go through a few more attacks if I can get a fresh start without the stones.

    But if the stones return a few years in the future I could need surgery and not have insurance then.

    If I get a fresh start, I plan to maintain the gall bladder through lifestyle changes like keeping fat in my diet to a minimum, daily dissolvants like apple juice, and more regular sleep at night with a melatonin supplement, and regular excercise.

    Mrs.Cw

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chair Warmer View Post
    Vicki,

    I'm very interested to hear more of your experiences with this if you wouldn't mind sharing.
    Ok Mrs CW, you asked! BTW, did you scroll down that very last link I posted. Lots of commentaries there.

    Mrs CW, I have no idea to this day exactly what was wrong with me. It started in my lower abdomin and I had terrible acid reflux and much girgling in my stomach. I stopped drinking so much coffee and tried many different natural treatments that in my case seemed to help but never totally fixed the problem. It took many months but I slowly got worse and worse. My workload at the time was unbelievable and it got to the point where I could not function even at work. I'd come home from work and collapse. It would take me all weekend to feel good enough to go back to work the following week. I was struggling so. I told my clients for months that I really did not feel good. Not many seemed to believe me as I'm very good at hiding my symptoms of terrible bloating, swelling, etc. I think it happened so gradually that they didn't really see the dramatic change in me.

    My lymph nodes in my groin area swelled very big and my whole abdomin and stomach swelled to the point where it was going right around to my back and up to my breast area. I had terrible pains in my left side mainly but sometimes the pain was in my lower abdomin as well.

    This went on and on and finally I scheduled a two week vacation from work and told everyone if I didn't feel 100% better in two weeks, I wasn't coming back. I was at the end of my rope. I needed to concentrate on me and getting my health back. Nothing else mattered at that point.

    Most people around me demanded I go see the Doctors and get to the bottom of it all so I scheduled my first appointment. They wanted to do a Colonascopy first and wanted $1300 up front for it. I had a problem with that because I kept telling them it wasn't my colon at all. It was my intestines but they argued with me that that is the way they could see my intestines. I was in no mood for them to shove something up my butt. Sorry but it ain't happening. I didn't want them even treating me to be honest so I went to a Naturalpath at the Springs in Clifton Springs hospital.

    He immediately put me on a herbal formula called "Robert's Formula" and it had the strongest of the natural antibiotic herbs in that. He also put me on homeopathic Nux vomica and started accupuncture treatments. I did feel slightly better right off the bat. I went to him every week and started feeling alittle better each week. I also rescheduled with my reg Dr and they looked me over briefly and said I had to have the colonascopy. They also suggested an MRI and a CT scan as well as bloodwork and those I said I would do.

    They said my bloodwork looked normal and they found nothing in the CT scan or MRI and here I was still in terrible pain and swollen to the moon. I couldn't wear normal clothes anymore at all and forget anything around my waist or even a bra. I couldn't take the pressure. I was fatiqued constantly and really not looking well. I even developed a dark ring around the bottom of my neck. What was that all about?
    (Btw, this was when Pass Go came to visit me as well as Maric and Mz Kitty. I tried to tell them I wasn't myself)

    The bills from the tests started rolling in and I can't remember what I paid up front but all in all I paid it all off with my savings of many thousands of dollars and continued with my Naturalpath. I was making progress with him. He charged me $300 up front and $75 per visit. Each visit lasted 1 to 1 1/2 hours and he was doing acupuncture each time.

    It got to the point where I was feeling somewhat better so we went to once every two weeks and finally to once a month and this went on for a many more months. Somewhere in those many months I had gone to 5 or 6 different Dr's and I must say, ONE Dr. actually touched my stomach once and that was the extent of anyone besides my naturalpath actually physically touching me for my stomach issues.

    I seemed to be stuck where I was for quite sometime and applied for disablility through SS. What a mistake and nightmare that turned into and by then I had totally lost faith in our medical establishment and our SS programs. It dawned on me that the one time I felt somewhat better was right after I took that dose of natural antibiotics and mentioned that to my Naturalpath so he presribed it again. I actually started to get much better after that second dose and much of my swelling of lymph nodes etc was going down.

    I was doing things for stones, ulcers, hernias, etc and holding whatever was going on at bay. Then one night this excruciating pain came out of no where and I couldn't lay down, couldn't sit, couldn't sleep and somehow managed to take a shower and get myself dressed at about 3 in the morning. I woke up my oldest son who had just come back to live with me and through the tears asked him to drive me to the emergency room.

    We went and they gave me something to take the pain away and make me sleep. I did sleep for about three hours and again they did a CT scan on me. No one looked me over and the Dr that checked on me asked me a few questions and I told them I had been fighting this illness with my intestines for quite some time. He rolled his eyes at me like I was making this up. Good grief!

    Never ever again I swear! They sent me home and a week or so later I get another bill for almost $4000. Sometime in the week or two following that I had my dear friend who's a CNP over and I told her this rash broke out over my lower back and I couldn't see it. I asked her if she would look at it and she said "Oh my, you have shingles Vicki". Just what I need eh!

    I studied shingles and made myself up a formula for that and within a week or so the rash was gone and I was feeling much better again. I told my friend of the experiences I had had and how the one thing that really made me feel better was the antibiotics twice within months time. She wrote me a script for a third batch and after that I felt so much better it was unbelievable. I left work in May of 2010 and this went on all through 2010 and the first few months of 2011. I can't tell you exactly when I started really feeling like myself again but it was somewhere early summer or mid summer this past year. I"m back in all my old clothes, I can wear a bra if I feel like it.. lol .. and I feel and look like my old self again. No more symptoms.

    Whatever was going on with me was never discovered or named and it costs me all of my savings and then some. I did talk to a financial advisor at the hospital for the first set of tests they did and they reduced their prices for me but their prices were still higher than say John Hopkins would of charged.

    I'm not an idiot and I don't blame the Doctors for the way they have to treat people but the whole system is greatly lacking. I refuse to kill myself to buy insurance to support this system when the only ones profiting from this whole mess is the big shot doctors, the pharmacuedical companies and the manufacturers of these machines the Doctors rely on so heavily. They didn't do a thing for me except made me broke. I do NOT expect anybody else to pay for me either. I'd rather go the natural route or meet my maker.

    I'd like to add here that maybe 6 or 7 years before all of this I broke out with a rash on my lower thigh and had excruciating abdominal pain and was rushed to the emergency room back then. I had picked a tic off from my cat just before this happened and when I looked up my rash on the internet, the closet thing I could find to it was Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. I paid for that mess out of my pocket as well and got no relief or treatment or even a diagnosis. It may of even been related to what I experienced in 2010 but only God knows that for sure.

    That is my story and I hope no one else experiences it.
    "Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food." Hippocrates

    ~~~ http://www.VictoriaColumbus.com ~~~

    Real friendship, real love and real compassion doesn't have an agenda.

  29. #29
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    19,079
    I just got this in an email from my daughter and she wanted to clarify exactly what's happening with her and the insurance co....


    Quote...."I don't have gall stones, I have a 0% functioning gall bladder.I have insurance that will not pay for outpatient surgery. They will pay the surgeon up to $500, but nothing to the hospital. The hospital wants to claim me as uninisured. When they do that, they give you a discount to pay 20% cash down which is $2000 and then they would set the balance up on a payment plan. I see where some people state that $2000 isn't that much. Its impossible to come up with that kind of money when I work part time and my husband has been laid off for almost 2 months now. I don't drive a fancy car, in fact it isn't even paid for yet. I don't have nice things to sell, nothing that is worth anything. So yes, $2000 is ALOT of money. I've been paying for crappy insurance now for almost 2 years and this is what I get. " end quote.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  30. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    State of Missouri
    Posts
    13,063
    The pricing sounds about right...$10,000+ with 20% down. My wife had this done in September here in St. Louis and hers was $11,000 including the peripheral things you end up paying for separately like the anethesiologist, lab work, etc.

    Do they have children? If so, she may qualify for Medicaid. What state are they in and at what hospital would the surgey be taking place? (PM me if you don't want to say on the board). I may be able to have someone contact her and assist with getting qualified for Medicaid (that is one of the many things the company I work for does in the health care industry)...it just depends on if we are in her state and in her hospital.

    Kris
    "People are best convinced by reasons they discover on their own."

    "The next 20 years are going to be completely unlike the last 20 years." - Chris Martenson (The New 2014 Crash Course)

  31. #31
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Cleveland OH looking towards TX wistfully
    Posts
    38,503
    Have the doc seriously re-evaluate her medical status with an eye towards answering the question, "Does her condition, OVER ALL, require that he do the surgery as an INpatient procedure."

    Any number of things could combine to make it safer and more efficacious to do this as an inpatient procedure.

    BOTH of my shoulders were INITIALLY scheduled as outpatient procedures until they DID them and they were inpatient procedures by the time I got to go home.

    Oh, and 2G's is a LOT of money for those of us who aren't fully employed.... I'd have to sell 20 ricks of firewood (just south of 7 cord) to get that together...
    "I must not fear.
    Fear is the mind-killer.
    Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
    I will face my fear.
    I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
    And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
    Where the fear has gone there will be nothing....only I will remain"

    Frank Herbert "Dune" "Bene Gesserit Anti-Fear Litany"


    http://bluemudpatriot.wordpress.com/

  32. #32
    I'd go through the ER dept.

    I wish my dad was alive, he was well known in the US for building and running top research hospitals and would have given you the advice you need but I do remember him mentioning something to a friend of mine years ago to something that if a hospital is taking government subsidies etc., they cannot refuse a patient who may be even indigent.

    I remember when the he would get exasperated when he found out that yet again, the 'Queen of the Gypsies' took a liking to his hospital to have another one of her babies born in the bedroom community across Lake Washington from Seattle. They knew how to play the game and she'd end up with free healthcare and my dad had to literally have everything of value at the hospital in lockdown because the heaving horde of her gypsy clan would take everything in site.

    So see if it's a private hospital or a one taking government money, google as much as you can about the differences (I hope I make sense as dear hubby came in and is talking up a storm while I'm trying to type *how rude of him*) and I think you'll find that if go to the ER, they can't refuse any treatment for your daughter. V

  33. #33
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    zone 6a
    Posts
    16,699
    Why would she even consider in patient when out patient is an option? I may be mistaken, but out patient is nearly always far less expensive and heal time is far swifter. If it were me, I'd go out patient (I did with my shoulder surgeries). The less time you spend in an hospital or anywhere near doctors or nurses the cheaper and safer you will be.

    Vicki, did you look into Lyme disease? It sounds like that may be what you had-it can lie dormant for 30 years and more before it kicks in and starts giving problems. And a tick was involved-rashes are commonly reported with Lyme, and antibiotics usually help get rid of it. Something to think about since it kept coming back you needed more antibiotics-Lyme is unusually difficult to kill, especially if it's had time to mutate.
    ""If the American people knew what we have done, they would string us up from the lamp posts." George H.W. Bush

  34. #34
    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    State of Missouri
    Posts
    13,063
    Vessie:

    The ER could also just end up giving her drugs / pain pills to ease the current discomfort and not necessarily elect to do the surgery. Also, they will still technically owe the hospital ER for services rendered regardless if they pay for them or not so unless the hospital totally writes it off, the bill could come back to haunt them later as well. Another large segment of what our company does is staff emergency rooms with financial counselors who will help folks explore payment options and get signed up for Medicaid there. ER's are one of the largest drains on a hospital's finances because they HAVE become the "point of care of last resort" for a large segment of our society today.
    "People are best convinced by reasons they discover on their own."

    "The next 20 years are going to be completely unlike the last 20 years." - Chris Martenson (The New 2014 Crash Course)

  35. #35
    Thanks Vicki,

    I haven't read the comments yet but I will.

    Before the first attack, my tummy also swelled up and I couldn't wear clothes. I wore nightgowns or real loose sweat pants. It still swells from time to time.

    Gall stone symptoms are real sharp pains under your right rib which can spread into your back, across the middle, and up to the shoulder. Basicly it feels like your gall bladder is birthing a rock, which is actually what it's trying to do. It's too painful to lay or sit down. Also intense nausea, bloating, belching, etc.,

    The blood tests may show jaundice or infection, which results from a stone getting stuck in the tube. If it hasn't become that critical, I doubt the problem would show up on blood tests.

    My ultrasound was about $1,000 before insurance, which I think is an outrageous price. But I had to wait until Dh got insurance through work again before I could persue treatment because we couldn't have afforded it otherwise.

    And I can't blame you for running away from a colonscopy, I'd want to too! eeek!

    Did they check your gall bladder out real well when they did the MRI and CT Scan?

    It still sounds like you may have a gall stone issue, if you've felt any pain around your ribs and shoulders. Attacks can come and go, and some people never get pain at all from stones if the stones sit in place and never block the exit duct or tubes. It's really nothing to worry about if it's not hurting you though.

    The tick bite is interesting and sounds like it could have caused some kind of infection. It's obvious some kind of infection (maybe caused intestinal infection) was manifesting since the antibiotics were helping.

    I had weird things happen to me after a mosquito bite on my elbow a couple years ago, to make this story short I ended up with a bad headache (feared meningitis), temperature, immediate joint pain and ongoing joint pain in elbow and knee that comes and goes since then. At first sign of headache and fever I took elderberry and other herbs which seemed to minimize the effects of the illness, thankfully.

    I'm so glad you're feeling better and ok now! Thanks so much for the links you posted earlier and for sharing your experience. I hope you continue to stay well!

    Mrs.Cw

  36. #36
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    514
    Sounds to me like she has a limited benefits plan. Don't get me started on those! Helping patients find a way to get needed medical care is a large part of what I do for a living. It sounds like the hospital is trying to help her, but she is right when she says the hospital will have to list her as uninsured.

    $2000.00 is a lot of money to most of us. The hospital will probably stay the course on requesting this amount upfront because at this time she is non emergent. Is there a county funded facility that would take her on a sliding scale? Medicaid is another option to explore, but the criteria for qualifying for Medicaid varies from state to state.

    Yes, if she presents to the emergency room, federal law requires that she receive a medical screening to determine how acute her illness is. If surgery is ordered via the ER, she would be taken directly to surgery and deposit amounts would be discussed later.

  37. #37
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    19,079
    Just want to let all of you know that my daughter is being taken to the hospital right now and is scheduled to have surgery right away. She was in so much pain the doctor said she needed to get there now and he was doing the surgery today.

    Guess she'll be an in-patient as well, but that doesn't mean she'll she'll have the major cut done on her. We don't know yet what he'll do.

    And now the insurance co. will have to cover it. God works in mysterious ways. Always does.

    Thanks everybody for your concern and advice.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  38. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by Hansa44 View Post
    Just want to let all of you know that my daughter is being taken to the hospital right now and is scheduled to have surgery right away. She was in so much pain the doctor said she needed to get there now and he was doing the surgery today.

    Guess she'll be an in-patient as well, but that doesn't mean she'll she'll have the major cut done on her. We don't know yet what he'll do.

    And now the insurance co. will have to cover it. God works in mysterious ways. Always does.

    Thanks everybody for your concern and advice.
    Prayers for the health of your daughter! Prayers for strength for you and your spouse.

  39. #39
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    3,793
    Prayers for a good outcome, Hansa.

  40. #40
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    19,079
    I just found out something else that has me in shock! She had been in pain for quite a long time now and the doctor put her on pain pills. Yesterday he took her off of them and she couldn't get a prescription for them anymore. That's when the pain started hitting her full blast. I have no idea (yet) how long he had her taking them or what they were. If they were an opiate she'll be going through withdrawal as well.

    No one told me about this situation. I would have been screaming bloody murder that the doctor may be covering up a really serious issue. Turns out he was. The pills covered up the real pain she was in until they no longer could cover it up.

    He could have killed her. Luckily he stopped them and the truth came out.

    Just thought I'd mention this in case you would have a family member or friend that goes to the doctor in pain and suddenly most the pain is gone.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

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