Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tales of (More) Tapering

Last month I wrote about the good news of tapering the steroids. I was stoked to report that my nephrologist was happy with the results she was seeing and that things were looking good. I began the tapering process by decreasing my dosage 5mg every four days. It was a slow but sure process and I finally got down to 20mg a day. My doctor told me to stop at that point and to wait until we met again before I continued decreasing the dosage.

This takes us to last week. Any one of y'all who may have been on Twitter last Wednesday got my rant about a dreadful visit to the doctor's office. My kind husband even mentioned to me that I get a little "tweet happy" when I get angry. Ya think??? It began with the doctor's office claiming I didn't have an appointment two Thursdays ago for labs. Let me just say that this type-A organizer rarely makes a mistake on appointments and meetings, so I knew that I had an appointment. Then, this past Wednesday I arrived for my 2:40 appointment at 2:30. I knew they probably wouldn't be able to see me until my appointment time, but it was worth a try. FORTY-FIVE minutes later they finally call me back. You read that right, folks, forty-five minutes in the waiting room. I watched nurses take smoke breaks, the doctor chat it up in the corral, other patients come and go. Needless to say I was not a happy camper. Now, I understand doctor's offices can be busy places, but really?? It was a little uncalled for.

They finally take me back and their tablet computer system isn't working. Every time the nurse tried to enter something in, it would mess up and delete my file. If I had to rattle off my list of meds one more time I thought I was going to snap. She finally decided it might be a good idea to write it all down and try entering it in later. Yes, let's try that.

After another 20 minute wait (folks, that puts us at over an hour of total waiting time for those of you keeping track) the doctor finally comes in only to spend five minutes explaining the tapering process to me. Yep, that's over an hour wait time for 5 minutes. Argh is an understatement.

The bright side is that the labs still look good so the tapering continues-hooray! It's a bizarre process, but the doc wants to make sure I don't go into remission. She may take ages to get to me, but she does have a medical degree so I'm gonna trust her. The next stage of the tapering looks something like this.


And so on, and so forth until I get down to alternating 20mg with nothing. Then, I'll head back to the doctor for the last stages of the process. It seems odd but I figured she knows what she's doing. I'd rather be more cautious than not in this situation!


  1. Hey Lauren! I've been seeing the neurologist lately and at my last visit they had Greg and I waiting a total hour and a half in various places for about 15 mins of talk time. Then, when we left, we were the only ppl left with the Dr so we even had to unlock the door to let ourselves out. Dr offices can be so frustrating sometimes! But at least they take care of us :-). Glad you're getting off the meds!

  2. its amazing how complicated healthcare is. there definitely needs to be change. will we see it though?