Is it just me, or is it f*cking ridiculously hard to find a good OBGYN?
I really don’t even know where to begin this post, so if it seems disjointed, please excuse me. I felt the need to sit down and write what I am going through, currently, because I am pretty sure a lot of females can relate to what I have to say.
I have been seeing the same OBGYN since 2015- prior to this doctor, I had seen roughly six other OBGYNs, male and female, and I never felt like I was given the proper care or felt as though I had a good doctor/patient relationship with them. Everything was always so routine, breast exam, pap smear, pelvic exam, thrown a prescription for birth control pills and off they went on to their next patient, probably billing my insurance for the highest complexity office visit they could, without giving me a chance to even speak.
A doctor I had seen for approximately two years, in 2012, when I was 23 years old, informed me that I should consider starting a family right away if I planned on having children because I told him I was having heavy periods even though I was on birth control. He had no basis for telling me to start a family, no blood work had been done, no imaging or ultrasound, not one damn thing and went straight into you have endometriosis, and now I want to cut you open to check things out. I never went back.
After that jarring experience, I decided maybe I should find a female doctor instead, change up the pace, see if I feel validated in any way without someone jumping the gun on me, someone who could really give me a proper diagnosis- and I did! However, the next year when I went to schedule my yearly exam, she had left the practice. F*CK!
So that is how I wound up with…Doctor…X, thats what we will refer to him as for the rest of this rant.
Now, at first, Dr. X was lovely, he was kind, caring, made me feel extremely comfortable, and I never had the anxiety I previously had with other doctors when I had to go see them. However, there was a disconnect from the jump now that I am reflecting on our interactions. I would explain to him every single time I went that my cycle was extremely heavy, that I was having a lot of clotting, terrible swelling and pain during my time of the month, and he would throw a new birth control at me and that would be the end of the discussion. A pattern started to develop in which, about four to six months in to the new birth control, I would tell him the same sh*t is happening, or now I’m bleeding even worse, my swelling has gotten worse, my cramps have gotten worse, and then I would be put on yet another new birth control pill.
Then came the years of the IUD pushing. For at least the past three years, this doctor would push me so hard to get an IUD every single visit. And every single visit I said “NO.” I didn’t want the Depo shot, I didn’t want the IUD and I didn’t want the hormone eluting arm stent, I didn’t want to f*ck with ANY OF THAT because I have heard nothing but terrible things. ALSO, I know my body well enough to think hey if the f*cking pills aren’t working, I don’t want to be committed to having a f*cking foreign object in my body that I now have to have a procedure to remove. If we can’t get the pills right, I sure as hell am not doing any kind of implant.
Let’s cut to December 2019- I had just found out a month prior that I am living with only one functioning kidney and probably have been for a few years (that’s another story for another time). I had been undergoing a slew of testing to see if my dead kidney had any function at all, and during a procedure where I had to be put under, my urologist had asked my mother, who took me to the hospital for the testing, if I planned on having children or if I had tried to have any children, my mom said she wasn’t sure and my urologist in so many words pretty much told her my uterus looked trashed. He had identified a cyst on my left ovary and was concerned and told her to make sure that I followed up with my OBGYN with the incidental findings.
So, I did as instructed, and Dr. X was irate to say the least. It still boggles me to this day why he was so offended and angry that another doctor had found something, incidentally, that concerned him and wanted to make sure that I got it checked out.
Reluctantly, he ordered a pelvic ultrasound which was performed, and he sent me a message in my patient portal with my results saying that the cyst was small, and on the opposite side of where the urologist told me- no need to follow up.
I figured I was in the clear, he told me not to worry about it, so I didn’t.
Off and on during the next two years I would suffer from heavy cycles, spotting, and abnormally long periods. Each month, things seemed to get progressively worse. I was swelling beyond belief in my abdomen, I was having very strange tissue coming out during my menses, to the point of questioning if I had possibly miscarried, I could no longer use tampons due to the pain and discomfort, I couldn’t expel urine, and overall, it felt like all of my organs were smashing up together inside my body.
My husband and I were married on October 15, 2021, and I bled from October 11, 2021 until November 2, 2021, throughout my wedding, my entire honeymoon, I had never had a cycle last so long or be so painful and heavy in my entire life at that point. It literally made the honeymoon miserable. I could hardly get out of bed, I had to go purchase a heating pad, I bled through the bedding of both hotels I stayed at, which has never happened to me in my life and I ended up having to basically buy pads the size of diapers. I was absolutely, f*cking mortified.
Here I am, a newlywed, on her honeymoon with her husband, and I am having to go and buy different size pads, tampons, and heating pads on a daily basis because I could not get my period under control. Halfway through the honeymoon I threw out my birth control and said f*ck it, this is the problem, and I don’t want to do this anymore.
However, the problem didn’t stop and started to become out of control like never before.
In February, we took a trip to New York, by the time I had gotten there I had been bleeding for two weeks. My cycle had started with light spotting and I thought, cool, my period will be normal, and I won’t have it for my trip. Progressively, my period got heavier and heavier, and by this point I was pretty much used to my abnormal cycles and decided to just deal with it like I always had. However, things got very bad very quickly.
I could no longer urinate, I did not make not even one bowel movement while on the trip, my whole abdomen was so swollen I could hardly bend over, I had to start taking diuretics to get the swelling down, and by the last day I was in so much pain I was almost 100% positive I would not be able to make it on the flight home. Luckily, after multiple doses of ibuprofen, some hot tea and rest, the pain finally subsided enough, and I was able to make the flight home.
At this point, I had finally come to terms with the fact that something is seriously wrong and everything that I am experiencing cannot be normal. My cycle wasn’t only f*cking with my body, it was also f*cking with my head too. My mental state started to deteriorate very quickly, I don’t know if it is the surge in hormones, the excessive bleeding, or what, but there was an awful shift in my mental state and everyone could clearly see it. My work called me out on it, my husband told me things that transpired that I could not even remember, and it sent me spiraling. It was beyond time to call my doctor.
In an amazing twist of events that worked out in my favor, Dr. X was booked up, and I was scheduled with a female nurse practitioner within the same practice. I held nothing back when I told her everything I was experiencing, and she validated my every symptom, she listened to me, she told me “no this does not sound right at all this should not be happening to you”. For once, everything I had told a practitioner was properly handled, and I felt so good.
I told her my feelings about Dr. X and how every visit I would tell him about the abnormal bleeding, and that he would always throw birth control at me or suggest IUD’s and never once upon viewing of my medical chart had he ever made one remark about my heavy cycles or abnormal bleeding.
She ordered for me to have a pelvic ultrasound as well as some blood work done, to check my thyroid and do a CBC to make sure all bases were covered, and asked if I would be comfortable considering seeing another doctor within the practice. Without a shadow of a doubt I said yes, I think that is the best thing for me. That day, I walked out with an appointment with a new doctor as well as an order for a pelvic ultrasound, and I had a feeling in my heart that I would finally have answers.
Yesterday, I was able to view my ultrasound results, and I am absolutely shook.
Not only do I have an abnormally thick uterus and a cyst on my cervix, I also have a debris filled cyst just a tiny bit bigger than a tennis ball on my left ovary and a debris filled cyst half the size of a tennis ball on my right ovary.
This morning, I called to move my appointment scheduled for March 23 to this Thursday, March 10.
I don’t know what the outcome will be, I pray it is good. I pray that I will finally be able to get help and relief from the constant pain I am in, and I won’t have to suffer like this anymore.
It is absolutely maddening, when you are constantly cramping before, during and after your cycle, and maybe only have a week when you aren’t bleeding and your hormones aren’t raging. Right now, my hormones are so out of wack, my hair is greasy despite just being washed, my face is broken out, my skin looks absolutely horrible, I feel terrible…
Overall, I am really scared. I feel like my body is even more of a ticking time bomb knowing I have these cysts, and I can feel my abdomen is so swollen that I can hardly bend over. My fear is what if one of these cysts ruptures, and I am out somewhere or driving, or home alone, and I pass out and cannot call for help…
Ladies, no matter what, if you feel like something is wrong, get the answers you need. If you need to get a second opinion- do it.
Do not let any doctor make you feel like what you are saying is not validated. You know your body better than anyone.
Always trust your gut instinct and intuition no matter what because you never know what it might cost you if you don’t.