Diagnosis ~ what seems to be the matter?

Naming health problems is important for lots of reasons: in identifying treatments, establishing eligibility for welfare support and funding through government health schemes, providing an overview of likely recovery phases and times, and in giving us a point of reference when it's necessary to explain long term disability or indisposition.  We can then undertake our own research and become more fully informed.  

But getting a diagnosis isn't always straightforward and indeed may prove immensely frustrating.

Problems can arise when a range of symptoms is common to a group of health disorders.  Symptoms associated with trauma such as sleep and memory problems, difficulty concentrating, irritability and outbursts, depression, susceptibility to over-stimulation, fatigue (which may worsen with exercise) and headaches are also indicators for depression, burnout (which isn't recognised as a medical condition by authorities here in New Zealand) chronic fatigue syndrome/M.E., the long term effects of head injuries and post-concussion syndrome, as well as post-traumatic stress disorder. If you are female you may even find menopause suggested.

That cures are elusive and treatments often limited to 'managing' these conditions can compound the situation.

Furthermore, one's state may fluctuate inexplicably but not seem to change much overall.   Some of the time we are likely to be fine, at others not at all.  And since it's natural to make an effort when relating to others they are likely to get the impression that we are absolutely fine - another handicap in terms of being understood. 

I am sure that any chronic health disorder is likely to be caused by a cluster of factors.  This certainly seems to have been true for me. (Refer earlier article.)  Had these health challenges occurred singly they might well have been overcome. Although I am long past the acute stage various symptoms persist often in a seemingly random fashion.

Contributing factors may have accrued from much earlier in our lives: when reading up about post-traumatic stress disorder I was interested to discover that those who have experienced trauma earlier in their lives, particularly in childhood, are much more likely to develop this disorder than those who have not.  Motor vehicle accidents, assaults and the sudden, unexpected death of a loved one are all statistically very high stress factors.

In the area of trauma there are no easy answers, but I do encourage others to persevere in finding a doctor who recognises disability and loss of normal function and puts pen to paper accordingly.  Hopefully robust good health will reassert itself over time.  

To go to the next article click this link:
Diagnosis ~ medical terminology  

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