Happy Cancer Girl

A Happy Girls Journey with Cancer

Paging Doctor Google

I have a terrible habit of googling any medical problems I may have. I don’t know why I do this, although I know I’m not alone. Maybe because it is so hard to see a doctor whether you go to a family doctor, an after hours clinic or the emergency room. The funny thing with google (or not so funny thing) is you will almost always find a site saying you need to see a doctor immediately, you may be dying. After my surgery I was concerned about my belly button. It looked gross, and I didn’t know how to tell if it was infected. I actually picked up the phone and called Telecare and asked them. So I guess it’s a good sign, if I really think something is wrong I usually go to a medical professional and not Dr. Google.

The problem I am having now is I don’t know if something small could possibly be something big. Aches and pains I wouldn’t have paid attention to before, seem like maybe they could be a bigger deal. A few weeks ago I was having a pain in my wrist, nothing serious, and I thought it was because I was using my computer a little more frequently. Shortly after the wrist pain went away, I noticed my hand was swollen when I was waking up in the morning. The swollen hand in the mornings continued for about 2 weeks, some mornings I had to actually roll my hand against the bed to make a fist. Yesterday I noticed that on top of the swelling, my arm feels heavy and now today I have an ache in my shoulder.

I mentioned this to Owen last night, I honestly didn’t think anything of it. He asked if I had googled it, because that is usually the first thing I do. I hadn’t, but I grab my iPad and started a google search. I found all kinds of stuff, sodium intake (I don’t eat a lot of salty foods) and water retention. I only have a problem in one arm and think that if it was water retention it would be both arms and ankles. Carpal tunnel is an option but I don’t have any tingling in my hand so I don’t think that is it either. The one thing I found that I am actually concerned about is Lymphadenopathy, which is a condition associated with enlarged lymph nodes.

I would call my family doctor if i still had one. He was a great doctor, and I’m sure he would help work out whatever is wrong. I could always call the after hours clinic, but I find they always tell me that they can’t help me, unless it is a prescription refill. My last option is to go to the emergency room. I don’t like going to the ER because to me it requires an emergency and is a sore arm that big of a deal? If I did go, do I tell them at registration that my hand is swollen in the morning, my shoulder is a bit sore, and oh by the way, I have cancer. I have an appointment in Halifax on Friday for my pre-op and I’m sure I will let the nurse know what is going on, but they will probably tell me that I should see my family doctor…which I don’t have. It’s a viscous cycle. In all reality, I will probably give Telecare a call and see if it’s something I should have looked at, because Dr. Google isn’t really helping.