The other day I received a rather unexpected letter through the post. The letter was asking me to attend a clinic with my Neurologist – just 11 weeks after the appointment in which he’d said he would see me again in 6 months. To some people this may not appear particularly strange, but for anyone who is as seasoned in this game as me it will be wholly surprising. It was suggested to me that perhaps he just wanted to see how I was doing because my MS had been so bad when I last saw him – I discounted this possibility straight away; that simply doesn’t happen. Apart from the year of my diagnosis my clinics have always been between 6 – 12 months apart and prior to that never less than 3 months apart. So what was the reason for this unexpected appointment?
My mind began racing. You may recall that I’d come away from my last appointment with a referral for an MRI, a driving assessment and a wheelchair assessment, not to mention the concern that my MS may have become progressive… What did this unexpected appointment mean? What had they found on my scan? Was I dying? Had they called me in for an emergency appointment because they’d found a super high level of damage on my brain? Or had they discovered a previously hidden tumour the size of a football? Had they decided that I’d been misdiagnosed and actually had something much worse? Had they perhaps spotted a dinosaur living inside my brain? What the heck had they found?? Or was it about my driving assessment? Had the assessors had a change of heart and now wanted to ban me from driving full stop? Or had the hospital decided to end my magic juice infusions? Had the drugs stopped working? Had the NHS gone bust? Why did they want to see me again so soon??
Sitting in the waiting room a little over a week later I mulled over all these scenarios. When at last I heard my name called I took a deep breath and entered the office. My Neuro stood to shake my hand (that doesn’t usually happen…) then swiftly set to work flicking through my mass of notes. Mumbling away to himself I caught the odd word here and there; “Tysabri”, “blood test”, “latest scan”… then, “How have you been?” “A little better than I was when I saw you in September”, I replied. “WHAT?” he spat. “Well, what are you doing back here so soon?” Umm, I glanced at my pile of notes, somewhere in there must surely be a letter stating that I was dying, or that they’d misdiagnosed me, or that they had, in actual fact, found a dinosaur living inside my brain (it would explain a lot!). Before I had a chance to put these theories forward my Neuro continued, “It says here ‘I’ll see you in 6 months!’ I’m sorry about that, well actually, no, I’m not sorry, it’s not my fault. Bah! – Well, now you’re here let’s have a look at you”.
So, there you have it – My Unexpected Appointment.