Here we go...
So I heard back from my GP first thing this morning with a recommendation to an infectious diseases specialist. I called his office this morning and they told me that he didn't have an available appointment until January 14. I said "ok, I'll take it, but I might have to cancel if I find someone else because I actually have an infection NOW." That woke up the person on the phone (who was actually very nice from the get-go). She wanted details so I gave them to her. She asked me if I could come in today if the doctor had time...I regretfully told her no because I had to drive DB back from PT on my "lunch hour", but told her that I could come any other time because my office is close to theirs. She said that she would get back to me this morning or this afternoon.
At about 3:30 this afternoon my phone rang and it was THE DOCTOR HIMSELF. OK, now, in my experience the ACTUAL DOCTOR doesn't ever call you (except my GP) and ESPECIALLY when you've never even been in to see him! He asked me to tell him what was going on and I did. He asked if I could come in this afternoon and (thinking "wow, this doctor actually will SE me!") said I could be there in less than 1/2 hour. And I was.
When I got to the office, after I filled out paperwork, they took me RIGHT IN. The doctor himself weighed me and took my blood pressure. He heard my story and, lo and behold, he didn't think I was crazy or a hypochondriac (which I was worried about). He said I definitely have a serious infection in my toe, that it is nuts to think that it should take this long to heal. Validation was good!
He spent a whole HOUR with me (after the two hour wait for the honor of 10 minutes with my ortho yesterday, this felt like the universe balancing right out!). Told me lots of stuff, but the bottom line is:
- Oral antibiotics will not kill this infection (he took my off mine today).
- He can't determine what antibiotic to prescribe without knowing what exact bacteria is in there.
- In order to find out either I have to get a readable swab of the discharge from the toe (sorry for graphicness) or, if it doesn't start to ooze again after being off the oral antibiotic, we have to remove the pin that's still in there (this will have to happen sooner or later anyway to determine whether the infection is on the pin or in the bone or both) and swab it.
- Once the pin is out, that will be better, but then we have to treat with IV antibiotics.
- That means they will have to insert this thing in my upper arm into which they can pump antibiotics "once or twice a day"...for how long, I asked? Gulp. SIX WEEKS. I told the doc this might be a problem as I'm pretty sure insurance won't pay to have someone come out and inject me when we're in Utah for a week in January! He reassured me that they will be able to teach me how to handle it.
It sounds a little daunting...and part of me hopes that ALL of this doesn't really have to happen. But I am SO HAPPY to have a doctor who seems really really on top of things -- he tried to get through to Dr. Toe today with me there and couldn't (no big surprise).
I am hopeful...and a whole new adventure awaits!
Not to mention that I got my "Yoga for Weight Loss" video from Netflix today...I'll try it tomorrow night.
One day closer to my 4-day weekend...and I NEED it! ;-)