Mar 07, 2009 - 11:09 am
A lot of cancer survivors can relate to 'chemo brain', the fight goes on between yes it exists and no it doesn't as far as past cancer treatment being a cause. But regardless of what caused it, stress or drugs or radiation or all of the above it does exist and many of us know that. Because of my initial treatment for NHL being 20 years ago I have felt changes in my memory and now cognitive functions playing a bigger part in my everyday. Yesterday I went to yet another specialist (rheumatology) and wow was it ever clear in there that something was so different in how I functioned during the exam. First of all I made a two page explanation of my symptoms for the doc and nurse to read first since my memory is truly bad and the worst part of it is that I tend to very often leave out key parts of my symptoms - just forget them - then I leave a doc's office and realize what I have omitted - it's awful. Anywho, the nurse and the doc said they didn't have time to read it. I was stunned - these were my SYMPTOMS - kind of necessary for a diagnosis I would think. I tried to press the issue with the nurse she flatly refused to read the 2 pages which would have taken 2 minutes tops. The doc, same thing. That's another posting about how I was treated but the point of this one is that I was stunned to realize that I was really depending on them to read the notes as I couldn't give a clear picture of what was going on on my own anymore. Then the doc did his exam and left the room and I then realized that I still had no diagnosis and the worst part was I DIDN'T ASK. Nope. That is sooooooooooooooooooooooooo not me. Normally I would have said, 'okay so if it isn't this and it isnt that what is it then?' or at least ask him what his best guess would be but nope I just let him walk out - and I had time to ask him too he wasn't in a rush. Man, floored me. He only had me go and get some blood tests to add to the exam but no xrays or any ideas as to what was up. I outlined how much this was effecting my life as well, siting examples of how I function with the pain etc. and he cut me off instead of listening for why I was telling him that particular issue. Also I just find that I can't answer questions quickly, I need more time to think about it than I ever did before - and you know how docs and nurses are famous for rapid fire questions? I just can't do it anymore. I find myself just spouting off something and that usually results in half information or information not properly explained. Anywho I wondered if anyone else was having these kinds of cognitive issues and memory problems, more than just forgetting. Blessings, Blueroses.