Re: Sick on the internet


Do you have a link for the full piece you're quoting?

Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 03-21-17 12:24 PM
horizontal rule

The BRCA+ group and the YSC group were especially helpful for me during active treatment, for exactly the reasons Heebie gives.

I have, obviously, been really open about the cancer thing online, though there are things I feel comfortable sharing here that I don't post to all and sundry at the other place. Regarding mental health issues, I am much more cautious online, but still reasonably open about the topic in face-to-face interactions.

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 03-21-17 1:22 PM
horizontal rule

I try to be fairly open on FB and in person about depression/anxiety ossues--the only way normalisation will happen is by people being open and honest about it. I don't generally mention bad days versus good days, but am up front that I have the conditions. I'm totally closeted in my professional life, though--too much stigma and I need a job.

Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 03-21-17 1:52 PM
horizontal rule

1: oh whoops. It's a NYT piece but I'm on my phone and can't easily insert it. :(

Posted by: Heebie | Link to this comment | 03-21-17 2:44 PM
horizontal rule

Here: Whom Do You Tell When You're Sick? Maybe Everyone You Know

Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 03-21-17 5:50 PM
horizontal rule

With more substance: J, Robot, I've really appreciated your openness and updates. Chopper, you, too. I always imagine the occasional FB updates must be kind of anxiety-making. I'm pretty open about various things when they won't be archived forever under my name (rather than lightly pseudonymous). My issues are more about how much it is and isn't OK to disclose about loved ones. They generally really value (or would have valued in Mom's case) their privacy, so it's hard to talk about how a thing is affecting me without disclosing their thing. I err on the side of disclosing nothing, which leaves me a little isolated.

Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 03-21-17 6:07 PM
horizontal rule

I spent about eight hours yesterday in hospital with my 99-year-old mother, who turns out to have a detached retina and will probably lose the sight of that eye altogether as a result. We have to decide whether to try for an operation. I have no idea where to go for advice.

What makes things worse is that the emergency blew up in the middle of a cataclysmic row with my sister who had made me so angry and upset that I nuked her from my phone contacts rather than risk ringing or texting her and getting even angrier at her response.

That happened the day before my mother woke up with a grey curtain in front of the world.

You know, even in well-run hospitals with kindly and efficient staff, eight hours is a fucking long time when you're 99 and 3/4s. I think I am going to have to go over there today and work at her living room table while she dozes in an armchair.

Posted by: NW | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 12:57 AM
horizontal rule

7 Sorry to hear that NW.

Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 2:52 AM
horizontal rule

That's rough, NW. But the question of surgery is something the surgeons can probably give you reliable advice on. Remember they do this thing several times a day and by the time they're consultants there's not much they haven't seen in their field.

Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 6:42 AM
horizontal rule

GPs, unlike specialists, cannot be expected to know everything in their field. If they did, they'd be God. Even very good GPs drop the ball once in a while, and then the internet can really be your friend, provided you're a savvy user and aren't taken in by the first conspiracy theory that comes up.

I must have recounted the occasion a few years back when Mrs y returned from the doctor having been told she probably had advanced liver cancer. After I'd brought her down a bit and breathed deeply for a while, I typed her symptoms into a well known search engine and it was immediately clear that she almost certainly has a gall stone. This was extracted in due course, and nobody was any the worse. But the doctor in question was mortified, and had the grace to admit it.

Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 6:49 AM
horizontal rule

Phil Hammond, back when he did standup, had a line about the GP who kept getting his patient notes mixed up...
"Well, good news Mrs Mackay, we've had your smear test results back and you do not have cervical cancer. Oh, wait, yes you do!"

Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 6:53 AM
horizontal rule

Thinking good thoughts for you and your mother, NW!

Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 7:22 AM
horizontal rule

Oof, NW, that's rough.

Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 8:40 AM
horizontal rule

Good luck NW.

Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 8:53 AM
horizontal rule

Adding to the sympathy, NW. Do you think it's a decision that she could make for herself, especially if you and your sister are at odds in general?

Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 8:57 AM
horizontal rule

Thanks, for all the sympathies, much appreciated. I think it's a decision she has to make for herself. My sister has herself had fragile retinas, including one detachment, so will be sympathetic here. So far as I could tell from our talk today, she's up for the surgery.

Whatever happens, she still has one fairly good eye, which even failed surgery won't make worse. If she does nothing, the odds are that she will lose all sight in the affected eye within the next couple of months. If she goes for surgery, they can rescue some though not all of the sight of that eye, and even if that fails she's no worse off than if she does nothing.

The risk is the general anaesthetic, the disorientation afterwards, and the convalescence. The operation will only be possible if the anaesthetist wants to go ahead, so that will require a meeting with him. But if the op can be done in the morning, so she comes home and wakes up in her own familiar bedroom, things ought to be manageable. That's what I think, anyway, but I want to be sure that the decision she seemed to have reached this afternoon is still sound tomorrow morning

Posted by: NW | Link to this comment | 03-22-17 10:39 AM
horizontal rule