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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My husband is 32 yrs. old and is having many of the signs of lupus. His mother has it and so did some of his mothers sisters. Both of his hand have been swollen for months and his legs are ccausing him so much pain. It's getting to the point that his walk has become very stiff. His feet swell up that I have to help him with his socks and shoes. Now his hips are bothering him when he walks, he tells me that they don't bother him when he's sitting. I'm now starting to see a rash on his back and side of his face,he says that it's not painfull.What I'm really worried about is what he is not telling me,I'm pretty sure there are other things going on with him but because they are not visible he won't say anything beccause he doesn't want me to worry. He says he'll be better once he sees a doctor but since we have no insurance I'm afraid he'll just keep getting worse. We live in Florida and we fall into the that funny little financial bracket, we make to much to get medical assistance but not enough to afford it ourselves. If anyone has had this situation it would be greatly appreciated for any type of information you can give me.

Thank you,
Denise
 

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That sounds like a very tough position to be in. Unfortunately, he'll need to see a rheumatologist and have some blood tests run to diagnose any sort of autoimmune disease. A few GP's are capable but would still refer out so I'd recommend going straight to a rheumatologist. Some of the medications are cheap so that is good... but others are more expensive (those are usually used if the others don't work though).

Is there any way to get medical insurance through employment for either of you? You can also inquire about assistance through church programs, going to a free medical clinic for an initial assessment and they would run the bare minimum of testing to see if a referral is recommended (bare minimum would be CBC, urinalysis, ANA in my non-medical expert opinion!). The ANA is usually key to knowing if lupus is present as it's positive 95-98% of the time in lupus patients.

Good luck - I hope you can get him in to a doctor soon and get some answers soon...
 

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Hi:

What an awful situation. I live in Florida, where are you? You may do best to go to a teaching hospital, many times you can get seen for the barest payment and get decent care. You would want to either see the rhumatology or dermatology departments depending on what is most obvious. If the rash is really "out there" some times the fastest way to a dx is via a skin biopsy.

Many of the Dr's out there will work with you on the cost of the visit if you talk to them directly...most insurance companies will not pay the "published" fees so thety negotiate the fees down...you may be able to be seen at a private Dr for a much lower fee as you must pay upfront. Do NOT be afraid to ask for a reduced fee...the tests are expensive and unless they do them in-house they will cost a fortune...which leads me back to the teaching hospitals as they do it all inhouse.

I wish you the very best of luck!

Stephanie
 

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Denise,

Welcome to the Lupus Site. Do any of his relatives with lupus live near you? I ask because sometimes their own doctor will be willing to help out a family member of a patient. They may be willing to see your husband at a very low cost and run only a few blood tests at a time rather than the whole shebang in one visit. Some of the blood tests used in diagnosing lupus can be expensive which is why I suggest getting a doctor that will run only a few at a time. While it might take longer to get a diagnosis the cost can be spread out. The other suggestion is to find out if any research projects are being done in your area. One area that seems to be a continuing research subject is families of lupus patients. Often with a research project all the medical care is free.

Let us know how things go.

Take care,
Karen
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks so much for the info

I asked my husband about insurance from his job, but open enrollment was back in November,(he didn't think that he would need it back then). As for his family with lupus they're in Chicago. We live in Port Saint Lucie, Florida so I will look for a teaching hospital. Since we are getting our tax return soon we are thinking that we should just go ahead and purchase some type of insurance since something is better then nothing. It breaks my heart to see him this way and not able to do anything about it. Our children are starting to noticed that he's allways tired and the oldest are asking is their Pappi sick. At this point I don't kow what to say. But I just want to say thanks for all the information and will put it to use.

Denise
 

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Brenda
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In a lupus chat with a cardiologist, someone brought up a question about insurance. They didn't have any. She suggested this:

To learn more about insurance resources, please contact the LFA Health Educator at 202-349-1159 or [email protected].
 

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sorry

i am so sad to hear that sick people who have no insurance cant get help i live in sydney australia i dont work am on disability due to lupus and i see my gp 3 to 4 times a week she runs blood tests every few weeks and i see one of my specialists at least once a fortnight who also does bloodtests all this is covered by government medicare i feel so lucky knowing that i can have all this treatment for free i feel so bad for all the people who are in need of assistance and have to wait for insurance i will say a prayer for you all
 

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Belinda -
Is that just for people who are disabled, or does Australia have a health insurance program for everyone, like canada? If so, does it work well? I've heard horror stories of long waits for important, necessary procedures in other countries with insurance coverage for everyone. As much as I love my country, I would honestly consider moving if I lost my insurance.
 

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brenda

brenda everyone can be what is called bulk billed by medicare if your doctor bulk bills but our health insurance is fantastic here i know when i was working i joined a insurance fund which not many people do but i paid like 30 a month a we could claim glasses dentist treatment and all sorts of physio but thats just extras if you want to but evryone has free doctor visits and specialists do charge around 100 dollars to see them but you can claim some through medicare which is free most people i know just become out patients in the hospital which is free also as for medication because im on disability i only pay 5 dollars a presciption until ive spent 260 dollars in the year then its free australia treats its ill and injured great ive heard about people in the us not having a major life threatning operation cause they ahve no insurance well every person here gets treated fairly
 

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It's true that we do have a very good health system here in Australia, we are very spoilt. Not all doctors bulk bill though, especially around where I live but now I am on disability my GP does :)

Most other services are heavily subsidised by the government with a small co-pay same with prescriptions, blood tests, doctors visits etc. Disability they subsidise it even more which is just as well I don't know how you would survive otherwise, I know I wouldnt.

The only problem we run into and it's surfaced more lately is that there is a long wait for some operations in public hospitals. Unfortunately that's not limited to what we call elective surgery anymore - it used to be. I know quite a few people that have had to wait ridiculous amounts of time for essential heart operations, knee replacements etc. in some cases endangering their lives. I'm sure you see that on a huge scale elsewhere in the world though, it's just surfacing here. If you have private insurance however then that heart operation can be done in two weeks in a private hospital rather than the public system.

Unless you have private insurance dental care is very expensive though and that's not good for Sjogren's patients :rolleyes: I am sure I have financed my dentists next two yachts and paid for half his house :wink2:
I was lucky enough to have the money to have my teeth attended to but many don't and it's silly really because oral health affects the rest of our health.

love
Lily
 

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hi lilly,
we are very lucky:) here in australia my gp has told me briefly that the government has introduced some sort of dental plan for disability patients to help with cost of dental prices im not sure about it yet but my father inlaw was saying between his gp and centrelink they have arranged for his teeth to be fixed at a private dentst i will find out more and let you know where in australia are you lilly? and hopefully kevin rudd will start helping more with medical and dental and also pensioners that would be a good thing but i dont think we will ever be as bad off as some other countries that really will let you die if you dont have insurance thats horrible anyways have a nice day and i hope to chat with you soon:)
 

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Sorry Denise I didnt mean to hijack your thread here, I hope you can sort out some means of health care for your husband, it is a great expense having Lupus :( :foryou:

Thanks Belinda I had forgotten about that....... there is some plan where they co-ordinate your other needs............I wish I'd remembered that or my GP had mentioned it prior to me spending about $2000 in the last few months :eek:

love
Lily
 
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