Virtual Visit Up-Update

(feel free to skip. this is definitely an incoherent rant against myself and a lot of medical professionals.)

On Thursday (1/20) around 10 AM I got a call from my primary care doctor asking me if I was going to be able to attend my 2 PM appointment. I had completely forgotten that I had scheduled it for the 20th, and after telling my boss I needed to leave early I made my way to the other side of town, where I was treated for severe insomnia, hives, stress and a bunch of other crap I don't feel quite comfortable talking about (just yet).

My doctor prescribed some medication for sleep and anxiety and I was told to wait for my dermatologist appointment on the 25th to see how my hives were doing. Fast forward two days (1/22) later and I (unfortunately) ended up at another clinic, talking to a nurse despite having uncomfortable chest paints that made it difficult to breathe and itchiness that is still lingering.

The nurse suggested that I get in touch with the virtual clinic to ask for refills of the prescription I had been given, but after they refused I was forced to spend an excruciating day in complete discomfort. I could barely walk, I looked as if I had been whipped, and my body was swollen beyond recognition. My face looked awful and my joints hurt, and to top it all off I slept an average of 2.5 hours that day.

On Sunday, after taking a shower, I went to Urgent Care (and ended up missing 4 days of work), where I was misdiagnosed by a doctor who told me my condition was a combination of (probably) COVID (negative), strep throat (negative), a UTI infection (negative) and a bunch of other shit that ended up also coming out negative and/or normal—and maybe work-related stress. I spent two-and-a-half hours sitting in a cold ass room without much communication from a nurse or doctor, and while sitting there, I had the strangest sensation that I was being watched through the computer's camera lens.

Before being discharged I was (unfortunately) not given any medication to alleviate my symptoms (I was encouraged to try Benedryl and Ibuprofen, which ended up making things worse), despite the extreme discomfort I was in, and after spending another excruciating two days in bed I finally went to my dermatologist, who spoke to me for about five minutes and gave me a prescription that has done me wonders.

Apparently, the hives on my body are a direct result of work-related stress/general stress, and going forward I will have to take extra care to be as relaxed and calm as possible (ha!). We'll see how long that lasts, but at least the physical pain is gone and the redness and itchiness are on their way out.

I feel a lot better now and my body is mostly back to normal. I have a few patches of redness splattered across my face and legs, but compared to the way things looked I cannot complain. I am still having a bit of trouble breathing, but only if I lay in bed for too long. Otherwise things have been OK and I have two more weeks of medicine to finish before going back for a follow-up appointment with my dermatologist.

I went back to work today and after a few stressful emails, phone calls, and devastating news, I called it a day and relaxed (a little) by reading a few books and writing this little rant. Hopefully the weekend will be much better. The Lord knows I could use the uninterrupted rest.


C. W.