I'm 21 years old and I was a really active baton twirler and ballet dancer BACK IN THE DAY. 6months into my 8th grade year of school I started having knee problems. My knee would seize up and I would have severe pain in my left knee and marginally bad knee pain in my right. Pediatrician at first thinks it's related to my heel spurs and sends me to a specialist after it doesn't correct itself.
Specialist takes one look at 13year-old-me and tells me to grow a pair. Sends me to physical therapy. Physical therapy, who has known me at this point for two years because of afore-mentioned heel spur problem, can't do ANYTHING without inducing more pain and causing my knee to seize up. They send me BACK to the pediatriciation who sends me BACK to the specialist.
tl;dr knee pain starts in '03. specialist tells me to buck up, doctors and pt people say 'she can't buck up wtf are you on'
In my city we have two hospital systems SL and MM. Both share the city's specialists for the most part who are part of an 'independent' union known as PCI. It's a huge ass building directly in the middle of the two hospitals and you would think, with so many doctors, that they'd be fucking efficient in their in and out times.
Each appt, I shit you not, was 4-6 hours. I'd show up at 7 and AT THE EARLIEST I'd be out of there by 11. Most of the time it took much longer. All of that for 10 minutes with a nurse and 5 minutes with a doctor. WTF.
Anyways, PCI doesn't like you getting second opinions. I had started highschool and by this point i couldn't do baton (I'd quit dance the year before because I couldn't go on pointe without my knees seizing. That was damaging my ankles sooo yeah.) anymore so I had completely lost my sport and I was quickly struggling to handle stairs. I'd taken a couple falls so the orthopedic, when my dad threatened to get a new doctor even tho PCI really really hates that, agreed to do an MRI but says over and over and over again that she thinks it is highly unnessicary and that I should really just ignore the pain and take 1000mg of Naproxen twice a day. (I have a small throat. Naproxen is 500mg each and they are fucking huge pills to me. It's the MAIN REASON I struggle to swallow pills now) I tell her I don't want to be dependent on pills and that I'd like to get back to enjoying my sport and doing more than just seasonal work in childcare.
Hum and haws later she writes the order for the mri which takes place in the fucking basement of SL hospital. Because it was the 'soonest they could get me in'
tl;dr: Doctor gets pissy that I'm not 'cured' and sends me for an mri after calling me names :<
Note I am a surviver of child abuse (teacher) and one of my biggest triggers is a condescending powerful woman who uses her position to get her way. It brings back fulllll on flashbacks and shit. [PTSD wasn't diagnosed for a few years later] Well the main woman tells me what's going to happen and tells my mom she has to stay out in the other room unless I really really absolutely need her because well it's a pain to give two sets of people earplugs and why should I bother my poor mom with my 'issues'? I'm in highschool I should just BUCK UP.
I'm 14 at this point and that room was beyond cold and damp and dark and scary. I wanted my mother and badly but they kept INSISTING that was just the fear talking. They give me these shitty earplugs and jam them in my ears and then, even tho i asked for a blanket, refused to give me one. They tossed the oh-shit button at me and said hold still.
[If you don't know what an MRI looks like google it. an MRI on your knee makes you feel like that kid on the converer belt in the horror movies who gets eaten by the incinerator. Oh and it's louder than most subwoofers at night clubs. ]
I wasn't told the table was going to vibrate and I got really scared really fast. Then one of my earplugs fell out. I tried to grasp the oh shit button but I couldn't reach it (the vibration had knocked it off) and i just sorta laid there and cried because they couldn't hear me (tho they could see me and how do you miss someone bawling?) and then the lady came back in to bitch at me for moving and said they had to redo most of the scans. She shoved the earplug back in, didn't hand me the oshit button and left. I went into abuse mode and floated and that's the last i remember.
My grandmother and mom said I came out hardly able to walk, crying and shaking and that the woman told them that they should teach their daughter how to be a grown up. My grandmother and mother took me home and didn't file a complaint because we were told, if you file, you'll seriously regret it and that they'd make it hard to get appointments etc.
tl;dr : Mri lady triggered abuse flashbacks and the mri sucked ass. ;_;
The rest of highschool was just a progressive knee disaster. I hyper extended my ACL 4 times (How I haven't snapped it is beyond EVERY doctor I've EVER SEEN's conception) and I had 5 more mires and 20 more X-rays. My senior year was the worst. I could no longer march in the marching band, I couldn't carry and hold my 5 month old cousin and I was on crutches January - Prom.
Each time I was told 'more physical therapy' or 'here have a cortisone shot from hell that didn't work the last three times' or 'you need a tougher skin'. I am completely immune to over the counter painkillers and Naproxen only works some of the time.
Then I hit university and switched doctors to a different city outside of PCI. Second semester I was falling walking up stairs and I saw a new orthopedic who had no clue why nobody had scoped my knee before and sent me in for that. while he was there he found a serious problem and preformed a lateral release which had a 95% success rate. I was in the 5% fail rate! I got sent to another surgeon having baffled this one at the local university hospital 2 hours away and by this time my knees had gotten (and still are) so bad I could barely get myself to the toilet and back.
This surgeon couldn't believe I'd waited so long. That is until he heard I'd been at PCI. Apparently they're notorious for stalling patients just to milk out money. If you won't get them published, they couldn't care less about you or your issues. He discovered that my entire left side of my left knee is damaged and needs to be surgically repaired. Now I'm having risky 50/50 surgery this summer that, had it been done 4-5 years ago, would have a much higher success rate. Either way I'm permanently disabled for the rest of my life and my future as a preschool teacher is in jeopardy. We can't sue because my dad holds the insurance and it's against his religious beliefs to sue this guy.
tl;dr 4+ years ago. I could've fixed my knee with simple surgery! fml.