Medical Update: I have extra things in my nose!

I went back to the allergist for my follow-up this afternoon, and she scanned my head…the good news is the polypiness has shrunk to a measly bit in the bottom of my sinus cavity where it will cause very little harm.  Take that, polyp!

The bad news is, now that we’ve got the swelling and polyp stuff to go down, she can see that I have a slightly deviated septum, a bone spur on the right side of my nose, and a tubal…tubular…tube thingy (I’m not a medical professional, okay!) that is misshapen on the left, probably to overcompensate for the empty space.

Alas, I did not get to keep any pictures.  So I drew you one from memory in Microsoft Paint:

As you can see, I’m not an artist either.

As you can see, I’m not a graphic artist either.

So like in the CT scan, white is bone, grey is fleshy bits, and black is empty space.  I also have this one oriented as though you are looking at it from inside my head, so left is your left, right is your right.  Notice the very thin strip of black (i.e., airway) on the left side.  This is the misshapen tube thing blocking the air flow to the left side of my sinus cavity, which means the pressure can’t equalize, the mucus can’t get out when it’s stuck in there, and it becomes an excellent home for nasty little bacterias.  It all makes breathing extra special fun.

While I was expecting a referral to the ENT and the possibility of surgery, as I was obviously not getting much air through the left, the real fun of all this has been dealing with my bitch of an insurance company.  First off, I had to get an updated referral to my allergist, which is something I’ve done every six months since I started seeing her more than three years ago.  But work changed insurance companies last August, which apparently means I now have to call my primary’s referral office a million times if I want anything to actually get done.  I’ve been trying for a month to get the updated referral done and sent to my allergist, and they just got it yesterday.  But the referral office didn’t backdate it, so I’ve got TWO appointments the insurance doesn’t want to cover fully.

My insurance company also seems to think that preventative care such as decent nose sprays and CT scans should cost an arm and a leg.  My allergist was able to break it down for me into three easy payments of 50 bucks, but still.  I sat for two minutes with my face in a frame while a big white piece of plastic circled my head.  That’s $150?  Seriously?

On top of all that, the referral office made it very clear that “per my insurance contract” (said as though I should know this, though I’ve never seen it in writing anywhere and no one had told me this during the last nine months of being insured by this company) I’ll have to come back in and see the doctor each time I need a new referral.  I’m going to call tomorrow and verify whether I have to come in to get a referral to the ENT.  Because if I do, that is ridiculous.  I’ll be wasting my time, the doctor’s time, my money for the copay and the insurance company’s money for the rest of the visit cost, just to tell my doctor that my allergist wants me to see an ENT…because she found extra things in my nose…and she knows exactly what’s wrong…so there’s really nothing I need from the doctor but an okay for the referral…to which I’m sure my doctor (who is really good, even if it takes forever to get in to see her because she’s too busy) will simply look at me and go, “Okay.”  I’m already cheesed off at the fact that I’ll have to go into the office and waste all that time and money just to say, “Hey, I’m fine, but I need a new referral to the allergist I’ve been seeing for the last three years…on a five year treatment plan…so we’ll have to do all this again at least four more times.”

Insurance is stupid.  I want to move to Japan or something…

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