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#4 - How does a diagnosis define your life?

Receiving the Diagnosis series

· Diagnosis,Treatments,Relationships

Episode #4 - What to do when every symptom you or a loved one experiences is written off to being part of “THAT “condition, left unassessed or untreated. By asking a few simple questions you can learn how to put common sense to work for you in finding medical providers that can help in determining the right questions to ask that help you identify the right answers.

After Jacob received an autism diagnosis it seemed I was often met with the same reply from medical practitioners when I would question symptoms or anomalies, I felt were separate yet related to Jacobs autism diagnosis. Many of you may be thinking or even saying “obviously any other conditions he may have would worsen his symptoms of autism” however, you would be surprised as to how many medical professionals did not. This was true even more so twenty years ago. Our journey on the roll-a-coaster ride of health issues began with looking for reasons as to why Jacob was curled up in the floor or often leaning over the arm of the furniture in the living room. This scenario often prompted a response from some professionals that he was very sensory, simply seeking out deep pressure. Thankfully my mom Spidey senses kept pushing me to look further and as a result and a thoughtfully, open minded gastroenterologist, we were able to identify through an abdominal x-ray that Jacob was in chronic pain as he had a significant blockage of his bowels. It took just a little over a week to begin seeing an improvement in his behaviors and how well he slept once we began the prescription the physician had provided. This was one of the many situations that occurred where my child would have suffered indefinitely if I were to have accepted that his symptoms or behaviors were all just part of “THAT” condition.

What condition have you or your loved ones been diagnosed with that has led you to many dead-end roads assuming that everything that is happening is related to the one diagnosis with nothing more that could be done? Have you relied solely one professional to oversee yours or your child’s care? A Pediatrician, Gastroenterologist and Nutritionist would likely all have a different starting point in assessing and addressing health concerns. Have you looked to see what other common or rare conditions could be causing the symptoms your experiencing? Could there be answers to why your child seems cold and wants to wear long sleeves all the time, complains of loud noises or doesn’t eat certain foods or certain amounts of food. Could there be a common everyday reason for the symptoms you or your child are experiencing that if identified, could be easily treated. If you have hit a wall with answers from the medical professional your seeing, consider a second opinion with a medical provider who could become a part of your medical team to help provide a collaborative approach to managing your family’s health conditions.