My physiotherapy treatment is driving me to depression.
Everything from being ignored in the hydrotherapy pool to being dismissed by arrogant physios, I have been brushed aside by my designated physio despite being guaranteed free physiotherapy whenever I needed it by my consultant because of my chronic condition.
My local hospital is the University of Durham Hospital and I find the physio department inept and incapable of coping with patients and especially those with ankylosing spondylitis.
I left my last hydrotherapy session in tears as I was ignored by the physio for the entire session in the pool as she chatted to the physio outside the pool about a night out and her next holiday. Other patients were also ignored. My session was also cut short to 25 minutes due to how busy the small hydro pool had become with patients. I felt so sorry for those poor people. Some of them could hardly move but the phyios were more interested in chatting. I couldnt believe what I was seeing and I felt so uncomfortable in their company.
Anyone with AS that has been fortunate enough to have hydro will know how beneficial it can be and to be treated like you dont exist is heartbreaking.
I was so upset that I mentioned it to a senior physio who said he would look into it. It was quite obvious that by the time of my next appointment, my physio had caught word of what I had said and was very rude and dismissive to me. My session lasted 4 minutes and involved measuring my chest expansions and giving me one single groin stretch exercise to try at home (bearing in mind this lady is supposed to be an AS expert and that I knew every AS exercise already). She then said \"see you in 4 weeks\". With shock obvious on my face I asked \"why so long\"? She replied saying that because she \"is going on holiday and no one could cover and I was also not a priority\". With that she pulled back the curtain, wrote me a slip saying 4 weeks for me to hand in at the reception and left - and so did my heart. I sat down to compose myself and left the hospital. After a quick cry in the car I managed to start the engine and drive my 40 minute journey home.
When I got home I called her to ask that in future if she could start giving me accupuncture or masage in the sessions rather than a quick 5 minute question and answer of what stretches I have been doing which was not beneficial at all. She said that physios didnt offer massage and that accupuncture would not help. I begged her to reconsider as accupuncture has given me huge amounts of releif in my last 5years and I was told I could have it from my physios. Again she was dismissive with one word answers and I was left with nothing.
This was 1 week ago and I dont know what to do. One option I have is asking my consultant to transfer my physio to another hospital (The freeman in Newcastle) but that means a 90 minute drive for me and by the time I drive there and back I have lost half a day at work and am stiff and in pain again.
I am so low at this point. I am depressed and cant see a way forward for the first time since I was diagnosed two years ago.
Im now paying for weekly massage and accupuncture privately costing me £400 per month (half my monthly salary) and heading towards bankrupcy just to survive.
My enbrel is not working and I can see my hunch returning on my upper spine. Im riddles with knots and spasming regularly. Im upping my morphine tablets and diazepam ad struggle to remember yesterday.
Has anyone had a similar experience in Durham or even in the UK?
Im desperate for advice. Otherwise I dont know what I will do. _________________________
28 year old UK male.Undiagnosed back and hip pain since I was 13 years old and diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis at the age of 27.Started taking Humira but it did not work. Now trying Enbrel. Also taking lots of pain meds including morphine, tramadol, gabapentin, diazepam, diclofenac, paracetamol.Now suffer severe fusion of the lumbar spine and Sacroiliac Joints/hips.Now Trying to support healthy living through gardening: