Friday, May 6, 2011


I hurt my hand in April  last year! Being the cheap resourceful person that I am I decided that all it needed was some rest well, maybe at night.  I did buy a brace that held my thumb somewhat immobile and that seemed to help. But I left it in a hotel a while back. A year later my hand is still killing me. 

I finally decided it was time to do something about it, since it wasn't responding to my treatment. I made an appointment with a hand specialist, since my regular doctor couldn't seem to find anything specific. I figured Mr. Hand Doctor would have some magic cure that would make the pain go away. Maybe a special band aid! That would make me happy!

Off I went to the doctor. He seemed OK. He took some x-rays. He looked at the x-rays. And without the first shred of sympathy diagnosed my problem as arthritis.

Arthritis? Isn't that for old people? I can't have arthritis. I'm not that old. He nodded. His nurse brought out a special, magic ugly soft brace and showed me how to put it on. No cowboy bandages. No magic bullet. No fix. Put up. Shut up. Take NSAIDs. Out the door.

Yesterday I got the bill. (You wanna know why they call it a bill? I looked up the etymology of the word: It came about mid-14th century. From Anglo-Latin, the word billa meaning "list," and from Medieval Latin, the word bulla meaning "decree, seal or sealed document." Based on what I received I really think we should have been calling these annoying reminders to pay money "BULL"!) Oh, sorry, I got a bit sidetracked. So.... here is the bull bill:

Click to "biggify"... you gotta see this!

My "Comfort Cool" splint can be purchased from sites on the Internet for around $30. I called the billing bull  department and sweetly made an inquiry about the price (really, I was very kind - but it was a bit hard to talk while biting my tongue). I mentioned the prices I had seen the splint selling for on the Internet. She commented that they had raised their prices a bit (you have got to be kidding me... a bit?!), and asked me to hold while she checked. My bill, which seemed to be full of bull, has been adjusted. I am happy that I don't have to pay the outrageous charge, but it so ticks me off that the medical field inflates prices to such a degree. No wonder our medical costs are skyrocketing. No wonder insurance is so expensive.

Geesh! It makes my hand hurt even more!


  1. I have arthritis in some fingers. It's annoying. Medical bills are more annoying. So are doctors. Arg.

  2. Cute drawings. Good thing you looked closely at your bill and caught that "little overcharge". bleh!
    Good thing they admitted their mistake and adjusted the lol!

    I'm sorry you're going to have to put up with the discomfort of arthritis. It sucks getting


  3. Cute post, love the last drawing. Sorry about the hand, hope the brace helps.

  4. Love that last picture! :-) Good for you for challenging the costs! I hate stuff like that. We don't get bills here in Ontario for general healthcare and items like your brace are covered under health insurance. I hope the brace helps reduce the pain you are in.

  5. Glad you were able to get them to adjust the charge for the splint. Wow, they probably would have charged $15.00 for one of those cute cowboy bandages.

    Sorry about the arthritis.

  6. You want to see something interesting, watch this documentary called sicko
    It astounds me how the medical field is in the USA. In Canada you hurt yourself and you pay for prescriptions, that's it. The number 1 reason for bankruptcy in the US is medical bills.

  7. Hey - you are like me! put off going to the dr. I thought I chipped a bone in my elbow, somewhere around Nov 1 - but in about April when my OTHER elbow started hurting the same, I am guessing it's tendonitis. Rest? uh - yea...maybe at night.
    and being the (cheap) resourceful person I am, I will wait another 6 months or so to see the doctor, if the pain is still around.
    sorry about your arthritis, and yea, you gotta pick those bills apart like you're doing surgery! but don't get me started on medical bills/insurance!!!!!!!
    : (
    - The Equestrian Vagabond

  8. It sounds like your hand doctor isnt the nicest dr. Im sorry to hear about your hand. A little whining thats cute.


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