Sunday, 1 May 2011

Men and Doctors

What is it with men and doctors??

I should start off by saying that I love my dear hubby. He is an amazing man and has been my rock throughout our marriage, especially this year. He is an amazing person and I am lucky to have him in my life. But he can be such a baby sometimes about going to the doctor.

He's got two issues that are keeping us both up at night (literally). One is his shoulder and the other is his calves. He hurt his shoulder a few months ago. He was dragging a suitcase when the wheel fell off and jerked his shoulder. It has been hurting ever since. I suggested he see the doctor when it first happened but of course he didn't think that was necessary. Every few weeks he would complain about how much it hurt and how the pain was keeping him awake at night. I can attest to this fact because he does not like to suffer in silence, even in the middle of the night. Each time I suggested a visit to the doctor, each time he said he would be fine.

In the meantime he has started having issues with his calves. Each morning he wakes up and the are literally hard as rocks. The muscles have managed to tighten themselves up and they won't relax on their own. They are of course very sore as a result of being so tight. So he can't sleep well because his shoulder hurts, and then when he gets out of bed his calves hurt so bad he can hardly walk. 

He's in pain. So he complains to me about it. He wants to know why they hurt. Each time I tell him how sorry I am. I also suggest he see the doctor. I am not a doctor and so I don't know why his legs still hurt. I don't know why his shoulder isn't healing. But if he went to the doctor perhaps he could get some answers. No more guesswork required, just make the appointment. Or let me know when you will be home and I will make it for you.

So now it's 2 months on and he's finally decided I was right and we go off to the doctor. Right in the middle of the Easter/Royal Wedding holidays. Of course we don't get to see our normal GP, instead we get this guy who couldn't seem less interested if he tried. He had the hubby move his shoulder around a bit and immediately said we need a referral to the muscular skeletal doctor.

This is good news, a specialist! We can get some answers at last!

So now I'm waiting for the hubby to mention his calves. But he doesn't. So I mention them.

The doctor suggests it's due to exercising or maybe being tensed up due to the shoulder pain. Not exactly the answer we were hoping for, but better than nothing I suppose.

Then I wait for the hubby to ask about better medication for pain. He doesn't ask. So I ask.

As a result we get a prescription for something a bit stronger than ibuprofen (but not much). *Side note, what is it about UK doctors and pain meds? When I had my c-section they gave me paracetamol (tylenol for all you US folks). Seriously, what is their aversion to some good old vicodin???

Why isn't he asking these questions I ask myself? He's done nothing but complain for months about his legs and the pain and he's about to walk out of this office with a referral for the shoulder and nothing else? He later told me it was because he thought the doctor was a "tool."

So basically, he was willing to leave the doctors without even asking about pain relief or his legs because he didn't like the doctor? How much sense does that make? Then you're going to come home with no pain meds and wonder why your legs and shoulder still hurt? Then you're still not going to be able to sleep (which means I'm up too) and you're going to be asking me why your legs still hurt. At which point I'm going to be asking why you didn't ask the doctor when you were there.

He's just lucky I was there to ask the questions for him. Even though we didn't get the best answers, at least we got something.

So the next step is seeing the specialist. It will take a week or so to get that appointment. In the meantime I am massaging his legs and he's using a hot water bottle. I'm force feeding him the new pain meds and wishing for the best. I also plan to make sure I can go with him to see the specialist to make sure he doesn't go mute again.

What is it with men and doctors???


  1. I used to get this a lot when I was active (like, really fit). I found 2 things helped with the legs- calcium pills and also making sure you're very hydrated before you go to bed. Maybe that will help in the meanwhile?

    Also, I was the exact same way after my c-section. I received tylenol (extra strength, which I used to take on a regular basis for headaches) every 6 hours- and I had to repeatedly ask for it. The best part? One of the nurses, reading my chart says, "you know, the doctor prescribed Percocet- very generous... But I don't think you need it!" WTF? lol

  2. My dh is exactly the same, I wish I had an answer for you!

  3. Calcium/magnesium for the leg cramps. I'd take him to a chiropractor or massage therapist for the shoulder. Pain killers will dull the pain, but not solve the problem. :)

    after my c-section they gave me hydrocodone, but I didn't need anything stronger than ibuprofen. I was glad to have the stronger stuff later when I fell down the stairs!

  4. Ha! So true! (Sorry to laugh- just sounds EXACTLY like my husband.) Mine kept complaining about a sore on his leg and I kept telling him to go to a doctor. Finally, I convinced him it was something to worry about and all at once he decided I was right and ended up in the emergency room for a blood clot. And then I had to send him back to the doctor with a list of questions he hadn't thought to ask himself!

  5. Matt is the saaaaame way! I am glad to hear it is not just him ;)

  6. Mine is the same way. Let me know if you figure out what to do about it.

  7. Holy crap, only tylenol for a c-section! I loved the dilaudid they gave me, IV administered every 4 hours then eventually got stepped down to vicodin.

    I agree with Laura and making sure you are well hydrated. I have a bad right shoulder, and tear it easily if I overdo it lifting weights or repetitive motion. I hope the specialist can give him some answers so you can get some sleep. My husband never goes to the doctor either, men.

  8. My husband would probably done the same thing... I always go with him and make sure every possible question is covered, b/c it's such a drama to get him there in the first place !! Men are hilarious sometimes. Love always xoxo

  9. I've had various problems with my calves and achilles over the years - including a time when I would also get very tight overnight: the result of short calf muscles - the only thing that really sorts it out is stretching. A lot. Try hanging both heels off a step for 30 seconds at a time, plus all the usual calf stretches. Sounds like your husband should also see a physio as well as a specialist - you might be able to self refer to an NHS one.

    As for the thing about pain killers - it's because of the English stiff upper lip... (!)

  10. I would echo many of the earlier suggestions regarding the calf tightness: adequate hydration, stretching, and bananas (for the potassium) are all supposed to help leg cramps.

    Men can be so silly about neglecting their health.

  11. I have no idea what is going on with your husband, but I ditto every word. L will not schedule appointments, I do. He will hardly say anything while we are there, I do. It makes no sense to me why they would want to suffer needlessly.

  12. OMG I totally agree with you. I have to make his appointments and I just don't get it.

    I tell him now, if he won't go for himself, he needs to go for his wife and two children who need him to be around and healthy. That usually works.

  13. Oh, sounds like mine! His knee was bothering him and I had to beg him to go to the doctor when it was swollen up so bad he could hardly move it.

    Turns out he'd torn his ACL and needs surgery. SIGH.

    Tylenol for a c-section? Oh, girl, I'd be crying for something stronger!

  14. My husband will go for muscular things but not if hes sick.

    It's so annoying. I hope you get some answers at the specialist!

  15. I saw your comment on another blog that you lost a baby last year and wanted to share this with you.
    when we lost our baby on november 5, 1998, someone gave
    me a card with this poem and it has meant more to me that anything. so i
    thought i would share it. the scripture on the front is Job 1:21 and inside
    it says:
    " I was thinking abut what's ahead for the baby. Can you imagine-it will be
    taking its first steps on the streets of Heaven! Hannah was a mother who
    certainly knows how special a little baby is. Perhaps she'll be the one who
    will let it hold her finger as it takes those first staggering steps; and
    maybe she will be the one to coax it into taking it first steps alone!
    Perhaps Dorcas will see to it that its hems get let out, and that the
    buttons are sewn on that growing child. And Joshua! Just think what it would
    be like for a child to climb into his lap and hear-first hand- about the
    battle of jericho!..
    Maybe Petrer will take it fishing someday! It will never fall out of tree or
    breaks it's leg, for there is no pain or tears there! It won;t be afraid of
    the dark for there is no darkness there. The King of Kings, the Lord of
    Lords, he is the very one who said, "let the little children come to me." I
    expect there will be many a time when he himself will take that baby in his
    lap and let it know a love that makes all other loves seem puny by contrast.
    I wouldn't be surprised if the Heavenly Father keeps a few lollipops handy
    for just such occasions....
    And one day, you will be greeted with a " Hi Dad and Mom! I've got some of
    the neatest things to show you; and some really fantastic people i can't
    wait for you to meet."


  16. I concur. It's strange they are all like that, but I have no answers. I am sure this is more entertaining to us than it is for you.

    "Tool"...good general description. Men love that word too.

  17. My hubby fell down a flight of stairs and walked like a hunchback for SIX MONTHS before he went to a dr. This was before I know him or there is no way in hell he would have got away with it!! His did is EXACTLY the same. MEN!!!

  18. OK. Reading before posting is always good. That should be "His dad is EXACTLY the same"

  19. This is why it is important for men to be married :)
    Thanks for linking up at Time Travel Tuesday, hope you get a chance to hop around! And Tweet and Share, so new friends come on board too. I have read some great posts already this morning!

  20. Great post. All men are the same in this department. You've probably gotten tons of advice already, so feel free to ignore this. But my calves would spasm just like that when I was pregnant. It would wake me up in the middle of the night. The Big Three fixes for me were extra calcium, potassium and water. Especially the water. Best of luck with him!