The Colonoscopy Exploitation

Well not as bad as I had anticipated, definitely unpleasant but not as disruptive as the last time I drank the Go juice in preparation for the procedure I’m about to undergo. I definitely have a new interpretation for the term “Trickle Down” as I wait for a friend to arrive to drive me to my appointment.  I only drank about half of the container and never purchased the recommended Fleet enema; it remains to be seen if that was a mistake or not. As it turned out using only half of the generic prep mix and eliminating the Fleet enema had no negative effects on the procedure at all and everything went just fine. One big difference for me was limiting and changing my use of toilet paper. One of the worst side effects that I experienced five years ago was severe irritation of my anal tissue from excessive wiping after each bowl movement, much like the nasal irritation from repeated wiping of ones’ nose during a bad cold. Since the majority of what is evacuating my body is liquid anyway I simply patted myself dry as opposed to wiping myself clean also the use of medicated wipes greatly reduced the amount of irritation that I experienced.  It brings to mind a humorous quote from one of my favorite TV show, The Big Bang Theory. The obese senior Mrs. Wolowitz’s comment while completing her colonoscopy prep; “How much liquid can one facausta tookus hold?”

The worst part of this preventative health exam has been arranging the transportation to and from the clinic. My fellow man let me down yet again. The day before my appointment I received a phone call from the dispatcher at the Acton Minute Van informing me that they can’t transport me home from my procedure tomorrow because I’ll just be waking from the anesthesia and the driver can’t be responsible(not that they are anyway). I responded angrily with “Why didn’t you inform me last week when I booked the trip?” The lame-ass replies “We didn’t know, I’ve never had a colonoscopy, duh.” Now I have to scramble to find transportation. I called the Clinic and they suggested the Acton Council on Aging but they refused also; thankfully a friend stepped up and offered to provide the necessary rides to and from the facility.

In addition to that outrage, I had to jump up and down and kill a couple of people at the pharmacy counter in a warranted display of righteous anger and indignation. The scene I was forced to cause at my pharmacy to obtain the prescription Go juice vital to a successful inspection of my lower bowel was a spectacular performance but no less justified. When I stopped in to CVS on the Sunday before the Tuesday scheduled procedure, just to make sure they had in fact received the prescription order from Middlesex Digestive Health & Endoscopy Center the site of my planned colonoscopy; they assured me that they did indeed have the script in hand. When I stopped by on Monday to pick up the prep I was rewarded for my due diligence with a $90.00 pharmacy fee for the said prep. Apparently the overcautious folks over at MDHEC submitted an order for a new and improved, albeit more expensive non-generic preparation mix that my insurance does not cover. Physicians ever conscious of the new toys, procedures, and drugs often forget that the average human doesn’t have an unlimited source of funds. After my dramatic performance one of the pharmacists stepped in and did make things right but I was very upset by the whole unnecessary incident. The generic mix cost $18.00.

In a humorous side note the staff at Middlesex Digestive Health & Endoscopy Center were efficient, friendly, and very accommodating. I met each member of the team and shared jokes with them and even though they were shy at first humor won the day. BTW the procedure requires that air be pumped into the large intestine to facilitate its expansion and provide the Physician an unobstructed view. The result of that reverse fart was the best flatulence I’ve ever produced. The medication that was used to send me off to sleep was Propathol, best known as the drug that resulted in Michael Jackson demise. I asked for a sample to take home but was referred to Mr. Jackson’s physician instead.

This whole episode has left me with a negative impression of the American Health Care system and the transportation services that we as a community provide to our seniors and disabled neighbors. No wonder I see octogenarians still operating motor vehicles when clearly they should not be driving. Who would voluntarily surrender their freedom to depend on community services that do not allow you to ride to and from a medical procedure just because you’ve been administered anesthesia hours earlier? If I had Dental Surgery would I be refused transportation as well? It is a shame. Our HCS (Health Care System) in the United States is an embarrassment to every citizen of the reputedly most powerful nation on Earth when compared with other HCSs among the developed nations of the world and even a few so called under-developed countries have a more comprehensive HCS than our own. President Obama and his democratically controlled Congress made great strides in reforming our inadequate HCS but we are a far cry from what it should be, Single Payer is the only system that can reduce our inflated health costs and provide the services the American people deserve. But the powers that currently control this country are not going to change the way health care is provided, they’re not interested in or concerned with whether or not an old retiree gets to his appointments and returns safely, they could care less that millions of people in the US are forced to pay outrageous amounts of money they do not have to over paid clinicians who truly believe that they are entitled to earn so much more than a living wage due to their education. There are so many issues and problems that can be laid directly at the feet of our do nothing Congress that I simply can’t cover them all here but be sure of this fact, no one is going to give you Good Health Care we must demand it from our leaders. The time for sitting around and accepting the status quo is over, cause a little scene, show a little drama, who knows you might just enjoy it. Rise Up or Die!

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