My health = not good!

My health = not good!

I often write about the US healthcare system and the health situation my wife finds herself in, but I don’t often write about my own health concerns, so here we go. I’ll start with the good news: my A1C is down to 5.8 from 6.3 six months ago and 6.7 18 months ago, so that’s good that my diabetes is under control.

I’ve always had back issues; back in my childhood, I was literally clotheslined. I rode my BMX into a washing line that was not pulled back up by the last person to use it, which caused me to be bent over backward onto the rear wheel. At that time, it was not a big issue, it hurt at the time, but the pain was minimal for years. But now, 40 years later, that injury is returning to haunt me in a big way.

For this, I could do with some pain management services, either injections into my back or narcotics to help with the pain, but that’s not an option as I have Aetna insurance, which is barely worth the ink that is printed on my insurance card. Most services are subject to a $6,500 deductible and a $7,900 max out-of-pocket. The deductible is meaningless, as you need to reach the max out-of-pocket for full coverage.

And I cannot switch to another insurance, via the ACA or Obamacare, as it seems more well-known. The ACA rules state that if you have ‘affordable’ insurance available to you via your employer, you are ineligible to get a Healthcare Marketplace plan with a subsidy. A marketplace plan is not affordable without a subsidy or advanced premium tax credit. The Aetna insurance is affordable at just $10.22 per month, but it does not seem to cover much before meeting the deductible/max out-of-pocket.

One of the challenges I am having is with my vision, requiring me to get injections in my eyes every six weeks or so, and each session costs me $2,680.21, which I do not have, putting me into major medical debt. Remember that I need to get to $7,900 before Aetna starts to pay for these shots, so each year, I am obtaining nearly $8,000 of medical debt with no hope of being able to pay that debt.

The latest issue I am having is with my legs; I am developing sores on my legs, which can be very painful, making it much harder to walk. I recently visited with my doctor, and she thinks that part of it is dermatitis. She has prescribed me Cephalexin, which, guess what, I have to pay 100% out of pocket for. The dermatitis is kinda itchy but not painful, like the sores. I’m concerned about these sores because they are popping up on both legs below the knee, and with my mother suffering from ulcerated legs, ultimately leading to her having both legs amputated below the knee, which I obviously want to avoid.

I’m wondering if I suffer from poor circulation in my legs in addition to diabetic neuropathy. My mother suffered from this affliction, which caused her ulcerated legs, leading to the aforementioned amputation. The numbness of the neuropathy I can handle; these sores and the pain they cause me are not something I can live with, and I really do not want to go through what my mother did, especially in the US, without the benefit of the NHS, orĀ  National Health Service of my home nation of the United Kingdom.

This leaves me with two options: hope it gets better by itself to save money, or see a specialist and get the required tests to check on my blood circulation, which no doubt will be subject to the max out-of-pocket.

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