Thursday 3 January 2013

Minor Annoyances

I am fortunate to live in a large city and I had a choice of several REI providers. I know there are couples in other parts of the country who have a 2-3 hour drive to find one reproductive specialist. Our short list was narrowed to two groups that accepted my insurance. Both offices were about the same distance from our house, although the morning traffic was worse getting to one and the other was a little closer to the pool where I swim each morning. The decision was influenced when Husband's urologist sent him to our current provider's office to do his semen analysis and he felt comfortable wanking there. Sold. I could look past the fact that my RE bears a striking resemblance to an ex-boyfriend (not the devoutly religious swimmer) as I do genuinely like and respect him. However, I'm getting more impatient with his office staff. I prefer to use email to communicate, as I find it to be more convenient and in theory should be more efficient, but I'm now doubting this strategy as there have been multiple occasions when my messages aren't being read completely. I sent a message last week about obtaining authorisation for my sonohystogram and haven't heard anything back. For the most part, I feel that I am fretting over minor details, but I'm concerned about the larger picture. If they can't take care of the simple things, how can I trust that they'll put the right stuff in my hoo-ha? The day after Christmas, I received a voice mail from a staff member whose name I didn't recognise. She informed me that my last HCG level was 16 and my RE wanted it to be repeated next week to confirm it reached zero. Seriously? I wouldn't make someone repeat a draw with a level of 16. However, I was curious to know my progesterone level one week after the peak fertility indicator to confirm if I did in fact ovulate. This was my negotiation; I would repeat my HCG level if I could also check a mid-luteal progesterone. I sent an email asking to have a progesterone level added and for the request to be faxed to the lab. I also asked for someone to notify me when this was done, so that I wouldn't waste a trip to the lab. Two days went by without a response. I called the office on the morning when I was intending to have my bloodwork done. A woman's voice answered, but she didn't identify herself. I said I was calling to confirm if the progesterone was added to my lab order, and if it was faxed to the lab. She put me on hold while she went to get my chart. Then she placed me on hold again while she went to check on what was ordered. Finally she returned to inform me that I needed to have an HCG level drawn next week. I asked if the progesterone was added and she confirmed it was. So my message was read. I asked if it was faxed to the lab and she confirmed it was. "Did anyone see my note about contacting me to let me know this was done?" I asked. Silence. No apology. No explanation. I hung up the phone. I sure am working my way to be labelled as a "difficult patient". Maybe I was over reacting and I am confirming that I did ovulate before my progesterone level has even been drawn.


  1. The squeaky wheel always gets the grease!!

  2. Lack of communication from your clinic when you're going through this kind of treatment is always a huge frustration. If you need to be a "difficult patient" to get the peace of mind you need, then let 'em have it!

  3. Fortunately, the medical assistant who works with my RE is the most competent one there. My strategy will be to ask to speak with her when I call.