Friday, June 12, 2009


First of all, let me thank all of you who responded to my last post about Letterman.

The more I think about it, the more I realize that he was NOT being a COMEDIAN, but was lashing out in typical liberal vile against someone he does not like.

That's OK to do if you lash out at the right people.


The second thing is, I really need some conservative guidance here.

My wife had two carpal tunnel surgeries about eight years ago, one of which we are still paying for.

Her carpal tunnel problems have returned in one wrist to the point that she cannot even hold an empty coffee cup.

Now, my pay has been cut to one-fourth of what it was, my employer provides no health insurance, we are living off of a dwindling savings and a small Social Security income and cannot afford medical coverage.

The question is, how do we go about getting her the relief she needs from this very painful condition.

We can't go to the emergency room, because carpal tunnel syndrome is not an emergency.

Not one local physician who deals with carpal tunnel will take her on because we cannot demonstrate need, based on what is left of our savings, and because we still are paying on the last surgery.

She cannot get Medicaid, again because of our "excessive" savings (which, by the way, will last us about eight more months), and neither she nor I can get work that pays enough to satisfy the doctors that we will be able to pay for the surgery, she because she cannot function with but one hand, I because of my heart and severe arthritis in my right knee and hip.

I have no relatives who could lend us money for the surgery, nor who would if they could.

As you know, I detest the present degree of government involvement in our lives, and surely don't want them to have more.

Yet I am stuck with this dilemma.

In your opinion, what are our options and how do we go about fulfilling them?


shoprat said...

What about assistance from your church group? Could they do a fund-raiser or something?

TAO said...

Skip surgery, find yourself a REAL chinese accupuncturist and give that a try.

I have three employees that went to a real chinese doctors, one to chicago, one in Atlanta, and another was out in LA while on vacation and they brag about how they feel.

I have yet to meet anyone who has had the surgery who is happy with it and did not have a reoccurance.

Chinese or Vietnamese...

bluepitbull said...

Actually, acupuncture sounds reasonable. Surgeons love cutting on people a little too much for me.

I had a blocked mucus pore in my mouth and instead of leaving it alone, they decided they needed to cut.

Good luck, Joe. Keep you in my prayers.

Lone Ranger said...

There are several companies that provide loans for medical procedures through your doctor. You can start your research here.

Pasadena Closet Conservative said...

I recommend finding out if there are university hospitals in nearby cities that might have some kind of research program involving this problem. These teaching hospitals are often looking for candidates to go through programs and trials.

As to your previous post about the Letterman issue, we'll never see him do anything remotely similar to Sasha and/or Melia when they turn 18. The Lib double-standard rules.

Anonymous said...

Conservative dogma says Joe, that if you didn't save up, you're on your own.

Lone Ranger said...

Liberal dogma says never waste a crisis. Trust a lefty to exploit and politicize someone's problems -- and anonymously, yet.

Mark said...

I wish I knew, Joe. I am in a similar situation. Only I have less than you. I can say that for sure because by your own admission, you have savings. I don't.

I don't know if you've read my blog, but I posted an entry yesterday about National Health care and included my story.

I had severe pain for several weeks and last week it just stopped hurting. Completely.

The only thing I can think of is God answered someone's prayer with a "yes".

We have a free clinic here in Fredericksburg that services low and no income people for free, and I have availed myself of their services in the past. But then, I qualify.

I hate to go there, however, because the wait to be seen takes forever, and then, they don't have the time or resources to make a proper examination and diagnosis.

This is medical treatment paid for through charity, and even that is sadly substandard. I hate to think of what Government run health care will be like.

Bryan said...

Let's pray that the Lord would give wisdom and guidance concerning this situation, and of course, relief and healing.

"Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:" (Jeremiah 32:17.)

Z said...

I'd try Shoprat's suggestion about church help. Or TAO's suggestion.

Conservatives have to stand together on this and WOW, is it difficult, but is it worth the ruination of our economy and our self-reliance to go single-payer? NO, we all see that, even as we're suffering.
I, too, am going through facing some fancy med bills soon...and, still, I told a friend "I still am glad we don't have nationalized healthcare" It's an integrity thing. I'll be praying for you and Mrs. Joe.

Best wishes to you both.

sue said...

Joe - I hope you are getting this problem worked out - and that you are doing well.

David Wyatt said...

I'm praying for you & your wife, bro. Joe. I have come to appreciate you very much. Shoprat seems to have a good suggestion, so is the accupunture. God will direct you.

tapline said...

Joe, From your post it seems she has had multiple surguries on her hands?? Mighten the pain be cause by scar tissue from the numerous surguries and couldn't that be charged against the doctor doing the previous procedures??? Just asking also, God works in mysterious ways and when one door is closed he usually opens another, so pray for an answer. It's easy for us to give advise, but the greatest healer has probably already given you avenues to investigate....have faith and God Bless......

Anonymous said...

Assuming you can put together some funds, and assuming surgery is your choice, consider having the operation done overseas. I live in Thailand, and the cost of surgery here is much lower than in the USA. So far I have had my gall bladder removed and have had two angioplasties (four stents), and at a fraction of the cost of what it would have been in the USA.

Yes, my assumptions (you have the money, you want surgery) are huge. My suggestion may be totally impractical. But even the flight to Bangkok, plus a hotel here, plus the cost of the procedure, will add up to a lot less than just the surgery in the USA.

Google bumrungrad and follow the links for more info. There are other less expensive hospitals in Bangkok, as well.

Red said...

Hi Joe. Once upon a time I had my own massage therapy business (I've since moved on to a career in Graphic Design). However, I used to work on many clients who dealt with carpal tunnel or were experiencing the beginnings of such an issue. There is an area around the shoulder blade almost under the armpit towards the back that contains a muscle group that when gently worked (if you press too hard it can cause your wife to tense up) will send sensations down the arm and wrist to give relief to some of the nerve pressure. Kneading the forearm and gentle stretching (some arm stretches like the ones used in judo or martial arts warm ups help because they cause the upper arm, shoulders and traps and hands to stretch in ways opposite of how your wife's body is used to carrying itself.

An example of one of these stretches is to have her clench her hands one arm overlapping the other and then try to bring her clasped hands under and over (like down and then towards her body and up. Hard for me to describe but that is one way. Then just switch hand positions and do it again.

Practical massage therapy is akin to good physical therapy and you can find a school that may offer services at a reduced cost because students need so many hours of hands on practical before they take state certification. Some therapists work on a sliding scale. Some work for chirpractors and insurance will cover it but be wary of chiropractors. I've worked with a few and they aren't all they are "cracked" up to be and can cause more harm than good. The last thing your wife needs is her bones cracked.

A parrafin machine from Sally's Beauty Supply or Bed Bath and BEyond is helpful --eruns about $30/$40 or so and is also helpful for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. The slow penetrating heat provides circulation and relief.

I wish I could be more helpful. Best wishes to you and your wife.