Brining in The Big Guns

Month two began with a step in the right direction. I had a contact in our chain of command, wonderful Major H who worked for the surgeon general’s office in our command who arranged for me to meet with her boss, Colonel P and discuss Sean’s case. Can you see the dancing and celebrating with this victory?

Col P is a trauma surgeon and acting surgeon general in our chain of command. Susie and I were invited to attend a weekend conference in Salt Lake City at the end of October 2006. We were two civilians among an elite yet small group of Majors and Colonels. I was able to discuss Sean’s situation with Col P and he agreed that Sean should see an infectious disease doctor, preferably at WRAMC. He told me he would see what the “boss” Gen C could do for us. Hooray!! At last, the attention of the General!

Col P contacted Dr. X and Ms. S. and it was decided that Sean should be sent to WRAMC to be evaluated for a program to manage pain from and unknown origin. He would go for an initial evaluation and testing, and if accepted into the program would return to WRAMC at a later date for treatment. Dr. X agreed to send a letter to the Deployment Health Clinical Center at WRAMC requesting an evaluation.

Dr. X told Sean that was unlikely we will ever know the source of his infection. He could have an infectious disease or parasite (hey–didn’t he also say “take your meds and you will be fine?”), or a psychological problem.

Dr. X added that he was willing to write the letter to WRAMC, but it would likely take them months to see him. He said, “Since the abdominal pain is getting better, you’re getting better. This really isn’t necessary.” and “This is a problem that doesn’t exist.” and “You’re so irrational and so concerned that you have a serious problem, but you don’t.”

Thanks, but I’ll take a second opinion.


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