Turn Your Head and Cough

19 Oct

I went for my annual checkup with my general physician today and it was the non-event that I expected it to be. Besides some persistent nasal congestion, I have had very little to complain about health-wise recently. The check-ups have been reduced to a series of rote exercises; take a deep breath, turn your head and cough etc. and as well as the usual questions, sunscreen?, seat belt?, smoking?, exercise?, which I usually give them the answers they want to hear.

While this may at times seem like a pointless activity, it is still important and I am fortunate enough to have insurance that covers this annual affair. In 2008 I was extremely lucky to have had a previously scheduled physical when my first and mysterious symptoms of my non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma began to surface. Unexplainable pains in my groin and back might have gone untreated for months if not for quick action by my doctor. He didn’t know what the hell they were either so he scheduled some CAT scans after I returned a couple weeks later with the same complaints. It seemed drastic at the time, but it helped detect my cancer very early, which I believe led to a speedy recovery.

I was lucky that he also took me seriously. This should be a lesson for all doctors, if a middle-aged guy is complaining about some health issue there is probably something to it. Most guys I know hate going to the doctor and hate spending money even more. So don’t forget to schedule your check-up this year. Sometimes you have to do what you have to do even if it involves turning your head and coughing.

 

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