In September of 2013, our lives changed one Sunday morning. I was unable to wake my husband in the normal way. He mumbled and wasn't moving correctly. He had lost the use of his left side and he couldn't respond to my questions. I called the paramedics and my kids helped me get him dressed for the ambulance that was on its way. His tears were flowing and I knew he didn't want to go to the hospital (fear of them over the years). But I insisted. He was admitted to the hospital and several tests were ran. They couldn't find the source of the stroke as they called it a TIA or a mini stroke. He was released after a few days with in home therapy scheduled. I saw similar symptoms happen a week later, but not as extreme. His walking improved as the therapy helped, but he couldn't put the same weight on his left side as he had before. I think he started compensating in his walking at this point.
After a couple months, he wanted to return to work. He never regained his full strength, but was able to work for a few hours at a time. Longer shifts or double shifts were impossible and the 15 hours a week he could manage working, started to take a toll on him. We don't remember a specific moment where we can pinpoint the onset of back and leg problems. But this past summer of 2014, he physically couldn't perform his job responsibilities anymore and had to give up his job.
Our first efforts at diagnosing the pain, two different ER's had told us it has to be sciatica. They went by where the pain was, but took no X-rays. Nor would they do an MRI. The answer we were given was that it had to be ordered by the doctor. About this time, my health insurance was cancelled as I couldn't keep up the premiums with only one income coming in. He dealt with excruciating pain for the past few months and on bad days required a walker to get around the house. He tried all the stretching, videos for relief, heating pad, ice packs, that has been recommended for sciatic pain. Nothing relieved it. Pain meds only dulled it.
Start of 2015, we have insurance again. Although the medical coverage isn't the greatest, he still agreed to see a new doctor and address the pain. On the first visit, X-rays were taken and an MRI was scheduled. It later had to be rescheduled as we were waiting for it to be precertified. Finally, the insurance company agreed to the procedure but bad news came with it. Our out of pocket was going to be $965. They wanted $193 up front and then arrangements for the rest. I'm raising 3 children and we are already stretched to the limit, getting some food assistance and occasional help from family and friends. They have been a blessing with their help but I can only ask so much of them.
The medical bills have been piling up from the stroke and subsequent doctors visits. And my husband already feels like a burden to our family. He doesn't want to jeopardize our family not having shelter, utilities or food, by asking me to pay for the MRI instead of the power bill or the rent. If there's any hope of him returning to work, he needs to find out what is causing the pressure on the sciatic nerve. We have a follow up appointment this week to discuss the X-rays and labs, and to talk about how to deal with the pain.
I do not like asking for help as I know many people struggle with their own health, bills, etc. But I'm reaching out in the event that someone is able to help me raise this money. I know that if the MRI is paid for, my husband will agree to it and he won't feel like a burden for doing so. Any help whatsoever is greatly appreciated.
Thank you so much,