Thursday, March 11, 2010

Looking Back................ on into Now

Part 1

I guess I should mention I had no fear about being hurt again when I finally did climb back on a horse after this accident. I don't know if it's because I just have no sense or if I didn't hold the horse responsible for the wreck. I just know that in my mind the wreck was a freak accident having to do with the way the gate was constructed. I didn't think it was the horse's fault.

I thought what the horse did when I asked him to go up to the gate was a totally reasonable response for any horse. His reaction to the sound of the leather of my boot grabbing the gate was reasonable as well. Added to that the fact the horse only jumped one step before settling made me feel like I could trust this horse. All these things put together influence my no qualms attitude about riding again.

That's not how it was when I took that fall a couple of winters ago. Certainly the fact I was at least fifteen years older affected the fear in that case. Then there was the head trauma that pretty much scared me silly. Between those two things, I have plenty of residual fear for both accidents.

After the regional championships I continued riding almost daily when I could fit it in around my physical therapy appointments. It was easy enough to schedule the appointments after I got a chance to ride so that I didn't miss them because I was sore..... or just plain exhausted from the stress of having the scar tissue manipulated.

I continued on it PT for months and months. I continued to make progress through all of this so imagine my surprise when I was told by the PT that my therapy had to end. I was surprised because I was not 100% recovered. I still was missing the upper ranges in my mobility.

The reason for stopping treatment turned out to be my insurance company. It seems to them a recovery of 80% of my mobility was considered "reasonable" in their book. They wouldn't pay for anymore treatment than that so that's where I was left. I tried to fight this decision but got absolutely nowhere.

I was left with only 80% of my range of motion. I was (and still am) unable to put my arm up over my head. I have limited movement in the higher ranges out to the side of my body. I am also missing some of the normal rotation in that arm.
Now imagine working with horses without having complete range of motion in the higher ranges. Things like putting blankets on and off, clipping, bathing and just every day grooming are affected by this limited movement even if the horse acts perfectly fine.

The days a horse does something unexpected when I'm using that arm can result in an unexpected injury....... or sometimes breaking loose scar tissue like Legs did the other day. However, more often than not it's an injury I get instead of an unexpected gain.

Over the years I've had many of those injuries that wouldn't have occurred if I had normal movement in my arm. The unnatural movements that happen because of the frozen aspect of the joint have caused some very painful times. Most of them have resolved on their own over time.

However, sometime this fall or early winter I endured another of those injuries. This time it did not resolve like all the others had done. In fact over time, it actually got worse. I found myself going to the doctor to get muscle relaxants. Instead I got ordered to physical therapy again.

Now it's been months since I started this second round of PT that essentially was caused because the insurance company didn't see fit to pay for my completed treatment in the first place. The extra amount of time they're paying for now is already double what was projected back then............AND I am not finished.

As of my PT appointment last night, I am to go back to the doctor for an MRI. This injury appears to be complicated by the decision made by the insurance company back then. While there has been continued improvement to the injury in PT, there are definitely oddities complicating my treatment. It's looking more an more like my rotator cuff has been affected. The rest of this chapter is yet to be written.

This picture is of Aidol right after we first got him.

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  1. Too bad the insurance was so determined to settle for 80%. I have some old injuries that flare up from time to time , but sadly I have no one to blame but myself for the lack of appropriate treatment. I am wot to say"if I had known it was going to leave a mark..."

  2. Do you think you might have a provable case against the insurance company. I hate that they make decisions that are not based on the doctors medical advice.

  3. It's just too bad our ol' bodies don't heal up 100%, isn't it? Wishing you all the best.

  4. Typical insurance company bull*%&$! Penny wise and pound foolish. I know that here in California, Blue Cross is in the crosshairs of the attorney general. They also refused to pay for my physical therapy, except for a VERY small amount, not the 80% they were supposed to pay, and I'm contemplating sending documentation to him for my case. I hear 'ya about insurance companies! It IS frustrating.

  5. Penny wise and pound foolish, my Mama used to say, and the insurance companies are notorious for it. To save a penny or two, they end up costing themselves far more then a pound!

  6. Insurance companies top my list of least favorite things. I had the same thing with my PT for my knee. I basically had to continue the exercises and stretches on my own at home because they wouldn't pay for more. They are stupid and only hurting themselves in the long run when they have to pay all over again. In the meantime we pay for it with our health. I'm sorry to hear that you are having trouble again and hope this time it can be resolved fully and you're in better shape than last time.