Wednesday, 20 July 2011
Page 24 Despite having a Severe Brain Injury, I never saw the Neurologist
Whilst Alan was bathing me and washing my hair he noticed a very large lump on the right front side of my skull, he was a bit shocked by the size of it and the fact that it was still there.
I had several nurses comment when washing my hair, or when I’d complained about the pain and feeling of rocks in my head, that I ‘had a few nasty bumps’.
They did several X-Rays of my skull while I was in hospital, worried about the fluid on my brain, or so Dr Vinod K Panchbhavi said!
I just expected these ‘bumps’ would eventually go down.
The one on my right temple, never did, in fact it was to cause severe pain, swell up and cause massive headaches for years and still does. Strangely it’s in the same place as the Brain Damage is.
No one has ever explained why I still had this, or what it is. It became much harder, and more pointed, as time passed.
I explained it seemed to get bigger when I got pressure in my head, and I had shooting pains up to it through my brain from the base of my skull/top of my spine.
I told Dr Burns, Dr Nick Moffat, and the Neuro Physio, I had fluid build up at the base of my skull and fizzing and bubbling noises. They just gave me very strange looks! I’ve recently started to wonder whether I had a fractured skull? Could this be another reason why they kept giving me Head X’Rays and not telling us why?
We got into a routine of writing my problems down and reporting them to whomever I was seeing at the hospital. So anything strange and new we noticed, was reported to Dr Burns, Neuro Rehab, and Dr Nick Moffat, Clinical Psychologist, amongst others. We were told to do this, and did so religiously, thinking foolishly, if they knew all my symptoms and problems they could help me to get better. I didn't notice most of my problems were ignored, no one did a thing.
I still had the breathing problems I’d had since the accident. I was unable to breathe properly on my left side, or breathe deeply.
I was getting pain in my cheekbones, head colds, and infections, along with sinus infections. I’ve only ever been able to ‘shallow breathe’ since, and no one has ever investigated or explained why I have these problems. I frequently joke I only ever get a cold in one side! I’ve never been able to blow my nose and clear my sinus ever since.
I repeatedly told the Dr’s, I had to control my breathing, I had to concentrate on breathing properly. I always remember Dr Moffat saying I shouldn’t have to concentrate on breathing or swallowing, but again they never did anything to investigate why. I’ve recently started to wonder whether I had a fracture to the left side of my face/cheekbone/nose? It would help explain the repeated Head X’Rays and my problems since.
One good thing to come out of this was I no longer had HayFever! Whether this is because the left side of my airways are partially closed, I don’t know.
We noticed and reported I had balance problems, and would lose my balance and almost fall over every time I looked up or around when walking, and even when standing still.
No one has ever explained properly why this happens either, other than to say it’s due to Head Injury. I’ve had fluid in my right ear ever since the accident, and sometimes wonder whether this causes my balance problems.
Alan has learnt to grab me and watch out for this. Mind you, saying that, he frequently forgets and points something out to me, and good as gold, I look, lose my balance and he grabs me!
Another problem we started noticing was that I would bump into doorways and chairs, tables etc., always on my right side.
We were told this was due to my Brain Injury.
I still hadn’t seen the Psychologist, the one who had been visiting the girl on the ward in the opposite bed.
It was, sometime later, before I was told I would be seeing the new Clinical Psychologist Dr Nick Moffat.
It was months and months after my 1st visit to Dr Burns and around 9 months since my accident before I saw him.
I didn’t understand he was a Clinical Psychologist and went through the following five years of seeing him thinking he was the Neurologist.
But I never actually got to see the Neurologist. I didn’t realize Dr Moffat was not a Neurologist until after I settled my case.