Monday morning, February 18th, I got a call from a nurse at Dingaling’s clinic. She asked if my husband was in because he had apparently called the clinic on Friday, February 15th. I told her that my husband had called Dingaling’s clinic on January 17th. He had left a message for Dingaling to call him back ASAP; that it was now February 18th and my husband was still waiting for Dingaling’s call. I told her that I had called Dingaling’s clinic on Friday to find out about my test results. She informed me that I needed to come in for a follow up appointment with Dingaling. I asked her why in the world I would need a follow-up. She told me that when they got my files back from Medical Records and had actually read the notes that Dingaling had made on January 14th, they had discovered that I was suppose to have had a follow up appointment. My reply to her was, “Damm good thing that I called you on Friday!” This type of incompetence seems to be standard practice these days. Everywhere I turn there is more and more of it. She told me that I should come in to see Dingaling on Wednesday, February 20th.
Wednesday my husband and I kept the appointment with Dingaling. To tell you the truth I really have no idea what the purpose of this appointment was. Dingaling asked me if I had been at the sleep clinic. I told him that I had been there from February 4th to February 6th. Dingaling then informed us that he had not received any information from Squirt or the sleep clinic. I told Dingaling that Squirt had been faxed a 5 page report on February 6th. Dingaling wanted to know how I knew that. I told him that I had been faxed the same information on February 12th and that I had been told that Squirt was faxed on February 6th. Dingaling then asked me if I had brought the report with me. I told him that I had no idea that it was my responsibility to provide him with medical reports thus my copies had remained at home.
I told Dingaling that the sleep doctor had suggested a trial on the CPAP machine but that he was doubtful that it would help my problems. I would not have access to a CPAP machine until July 10th, 2002.
Dingaling told me that all my breathing tests and lung capacity tests were above normal for a person my age. I asked him if I really actually had right side heart failure. He did not answer that question. Dingaling went on to say that my right sided heart failure must be caused by significant sleep apnea. I told him for the second time during that short visit that the sleep doctor’s report stated that I had very mild sleep apnea and that in his opinion it was not the cause of my right sided heart failure. Dingaling of course completely ignored what I said. It always amazes me how these doctors have fine tuned their selective hearing ability.
Dingaling went on to tell me that he would wait until after my trial of CPAP in July before he made any decisions on what to do about my right sided heart failure.
I told Dingaling that this was not acceptable and that if I really had right sided heart failure I did not intend to wait 5 more months before anything was done about it. I then informed him that I was going to see someone in the west on February 25th. He arrogantly wished me “good luck.” This was a bad move on his part. My husband had been sitting quietly listening to this rubbish until Dingaling wished me good luck. My husband rose out of his chair, mad as a hornet, and informed Dingaling that we did not need luck but what we needed was just one doctor who knew what he was doing. Needless to say we left right after that.
Right after my appointment with Dingaling, I went directly to the Medical Records department and asked them to make copies of my records from January 14th through to February 20th. These records would include my first appointment with Dingaling, all my test results and my appointment on February 20th. I was told they would be ready today and my sister picked them up.
Late this afternoon I received a phone call from Squirt’s secretary. Finally 17 days after he got the report from the sleep doctor he decided that I needed to see him. I guess this is what he considers ASAP to mean. His secretary informed me that Squirt wanted to see me next week. I told her that would be impossible. She asked why. I told her that I was going to see the endocrinologist in the city in the west. She went dead silent for a moment and then said, “You are going to the city in the west?” I said, “You bet I am and I am staying for most of the week.” She then said, “I will have to tell Squirt about this.” Obviously Squirt had not gotten around to writing that referral letter to the endocrinologist in the city in the west; the referral letter that I asked him to write on January 23rd. I did not bother to tell his secretary that I had gotten someone else to write it. Let Squirt wonder how in the world I got my appointment confirmed without his letter.