For the first time ever I was emotional! I held it together but I know my voice was wavering. He went to get Mr Patel to discuss my issues with the battery moving.
When he came in the room, I was slightly less emotional, as I always feel I need to be matter of fact with him. I explained that things have been worse and that I'm now suffering stress/anxiety due to everything in my life. He asked if everything in my life was difficult and not right, and I replied that the only right thing was my boyfriend!! He replied that that was something to reflect upon! I know he's right but at the momen it doesn't feel enough to keep me sane!!
Mr Patel then discussed the questions he'd been asked to respond to by my work, saying that he was, as always, non commital but clear that there is every hope that I will be able to get back to work as normal but that the operation to implant the stimulator was not a 'silver bullet'!!! He said that he explained that it needs a lot of manipulation in order to get the best from it.
This made me feel that he had done what he could to support me in all this.
We then discussed the ON. I said that things had been far worse and that the stim hadn't been much help over the past couple of months. He asked (playing devils advocate) how would I feel if he was to take it all out. I didn't rush to say "no" but I did say that I wouldn't want that as it would hard to get it approved again. He talked about having it moved to over my ribs, which I said I wouldn't want as it would be in the way. He explained that in that case, potentially the best option would be to suture it down in the hope of securing it in place. Then he went on to say that if he was to go in, it might be that he contemplates a change of battery type, to avoid having to operate again.
He said he'd make an appointment for a couple of months time for me to see him then and discuss all this.
I don't really see why we have to wait! I'll have the same issues then as I do now, and it just means waiting longer and suffering more!
Mike, from St Jude's, then explained that the new type battery works differently and uses different waves so that the patient didn't feel the 'annoying' tingling feeling. He also went on to say that he might recommend adding a new and different lead as well, as this could allow the frequencies to be lower as the lead isn't a paddle but the contacts go around the whole lead, meaning that only a small percentage is emitted to the main nerve.
I guess at least there is still some hope for this. Having a plan for me is critical, and I did say this. So let's hope they find the right answer soon!
Then I had to go through the reprogramming. He seemed a bit lost as of what to do, but set two new programme that are a replica of my first setting but using higher frequencies, 10hz and 20hz. He then said that after discussing these kinds of issues with a professor who works at a hospital in Queen's Square, they find that 70hz seems to be most useful and that's where they start with every patient. Therefore, he set the same programme but with 70hz.
So 3 new programmes to try out for a little while.
I'm not really sure how I feel.
On one hand, I HATE waiting! I'm not coping now so why would waiting help. Also, it's just putting it off.
On the other hand, at least there's a plan. I don't know if it will happen or even if it will help but at least there's something.
So guessing, once again, time will tell. But in the meantime, I've got to somehow manage and get by, and also see how I cope with work! Whoopee!!