In T- minus 10 days I’m driving to Seattle to be evaluated by a SURGEON for my elbows- and I am SO NERVOUS! For years, doctors and physical therapists alike have been telling me that my wonky, bendy elbows were normal, and I wanted so badly to believe them. But, with the pain/numbness in my elbows making nearly everything I do challenging- something HAS to be wrong!
Currently, I am experiencing pain in BOTH of the nerves (the median and ulnar nerve) that feed through the arms and into your hands. This results in numbness, tingling, and weakness in my arms and hands whenever I drive, write, type, carry things, or even just stand with my arms rested at my side. I’m fairly certain my nerves are being pinched at my elbow, but without a doctor’s evaluation I can’t be certain.
Along with being a chronic illness WARRIOR, I am also a chronic WORRIER! As I have been preparing for this appointment, I have had so many what-ifs run through my head. What if he can’t help me? What if he doesn’t listen to me, or dismisses my problems? Or, if he CAN help me, how difficult will the recovery be and what will the surgery be like?
Ever since I first discovered that I had Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and even before I was diagnosed, I’ve basically been figuring out what was wrong with me BEFOREHAND, and then finding a doctor that I knew could treat the problem. I can’t even remember the last time that I sat down with a doctor and he told me something that I didn’t already know before arriving there. Usually I’M the one suggesting the treatment plans, not the other way around!
So I guess that’s part of why I’m so nervous about this appointment. I know that I have hyper-mobile elbows with a high carrying angle. I also know that this is a known cause of ulnar neuropathy, rare though it may be. But it it IS NOT a known cause of median nerve pain, so that can’t be the entire problem! I also have no idea what surgery would be required to correct these problems, and I’m struggling to find any information about it online. So I guess I will just have to wait in see. It’s comforting to know that I will be in the hands of an expert, but the 19th couldn’t come soon enough!
Are any of you guys chronic worriers? What do you do to relax when things are out of your control? Comment below and share your best tricks!