How do I successfully get an appointment?

Posted by bomo @bomo, Nov 28, 2022

I have Sjogren’s disease, have managed Type 1 diabetes for 47 years, and have had Graves’ disease and Graves’ ophthalmopathy. I was recently diagnosed with breast cancer (surgery in 2 weeks) and am having another biopsy on my neck. However, none of that even comes close to the anguish of two years of gastrointestinal distress that includes random vomiting and constant diarrhea (10 episodes before noon today) despite high dose anti-diarrheals. I have nearly passed out many times over the past month and my blood pressure was 88/56 at the radiologist. (And I haven’t even started radiation.) I have lost 19-20 pounds from my normal healthy weight. I also have nerve pain, intermittent numbness in extremities (not diabetes related) and my voice is impaired. As you might imagine, keeping up with my job running a business is challenging to say the least. When I got rejected by Mayo today, I was really deflated and not sure what to do next. Can someone please tell me how to successfully get an appointment?

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Welcome @bomo,
It must be so disappointing to get that letter that there are no appointments available at this time. You might find the helpful tips in this related discussion useful:
– Can't get an appointment: Any tips on what to do? https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/cant-get-an-appointment/

Unfortunately some departments at Mayo Clinic have more requests for appointments than available openings. May I ask which department at which Mayo Clinic location you are trying to get an appointment with?

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@colleenyoung

Welcome @bomo,
It must be so disappointing to get that letter that there are no appointments available at this time. You might find the helpful tips in this related discussion useful:
– Can't get an appointment: Any tips on what to do? https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/cant-get-an-appointment/

Unfortunately some departments at Mayo Clinic have more requests for appointments than available openings. May I ask which department at which Mayo Clinic location you are trying to get an appointment with?

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I filled out the online form after talking to someone on the phone. The person on the phone told me I would need to start with Internal Medicine, so when the questionnaire asked me if I was trying to get an appointment with Internal medicine, I said yes.

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@bomo

I filled out the online form after talking to someone on the phone. The person on the phone told me I would need to start with Internal Medicine, so when the questionnaire asked me if I was trying to get an appointment with Internal medicine, I said yes.

Jump to this post

General internal medicine and GI departments are in high demand. With the complexities of managing multiple chronic conditions and now breast cancer, I can imagine that you are looking for comprehensive care that Mayo Clinic offers.

Have you considered getting a second opinion with respect to your cancer care? It sounds like the cancer is the highest priority right now and that it needs to be considered with all the other symptoms and conditions you manage.

There are a few options you might consider:
– Mayo Clinic http://mayocl.in/1mtmR63
Reapply online to the Breast Cancer Clinic.

– Mayo Clinic Health System: https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/
Mayo Clinic Health System is a family of clinics, hospitals and other health care facilities with physical presence in 44 communities in four regions in southern Minnesota, western Wisconsin and northern Iowa. Mayo Clinic Health System provides patients with access to cutting-edge research, technology and resources through collaboration with Mayo Clinic.

– Mayo Clinic Care Network https://www.mayoclinic.org/about-mayo-clinic/care-network/network-members
See facilities across the country who partner with Mayo Clinic to bring Mayo's expertise closer to home.

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@colleenyoung

General internal medicine and GI departments are in high demand. With the complexities of managing multiple chronic conditions and now breast cancer, I can imagine that you are looking for comprehensive care that Mayo Clinic offers.

Have you considered getting a second opinion with respect to your cancer care? It sounds like the cancer is the highest priority right now and that it needs to be considered with all the other symptoms and conditions you manage.

There are a few options you might consider:
– Mayo Clinic http://mayocl.in/1mtmR63
Reapply online to the Breast Cancer Clinic.

– Mayo Clinic Health System: https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/
Mayo Clinic Health System is a family of clinics, hospitals and other health care facilities with physical presence in 44 communities in four regions in southern Minnesota, western Wisconsin and northern Iowa. Mayo Clinic Health System provides patients with access to cutting-edge research, technology and resources through collaboration with Mayo Clinic.

– Mayo Clinic Care Network https://www.mayoclinic.org/about-mayo-clinic/care-network/network-members
See facilities across the country who partner with Mayo Clinic to bring Mayo's expertise closer to home.

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After more than 70 medical appointments and tests since 2020, I am completely baffled as to why Mayo won't take me. It is hard to articulate how frustrated I am and how alone I feel.

My highest priority is diagnosing why I've had constant diarrhea and occasional vomiting for more than 2 years, and how that might relate to unexplained nerve pain, numbness in extremities, nearly blacking out over and over. I have a plan of action for the breast cancer and am completely satisfied with my doctors and my surgeon, I do, however, think it will be tough getting through surgery and radiation with the violent GI issues I have, so diagnosing that issue seems like the priority to me.

Are any of the options you have recommended focused on diagnosis?

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What does your cancer surgeon say about this? The Drs will surely have to address this since you will be under their direct care during treatment. I would have to believe they have a plan or else they would not be able to proceed.

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I was also turned away by the mayo clinic. I have sever GI issues and now weigh 101 pounds. I am losing one pound per week. No Dr seems alarmed by it.

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I feel so badly for you…….I wonder if you have been checked for POTS? You have some of the flags for it……I have it slightly, but you may have it full blown. It’s worth looking at! There is an old book of great strength called Love, Medicine and Miracles . It has gotten many many folks through their hell. You might want to check it out. Best of luck!

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Thanks so much. My nieces have POTS, so it definitely runs in the family. I have a conversation with a
POTS specialist next week, and am looking forward to learning more. Appreciate your concern. It's just nice to know that people care. I've been turned down and turned away and ignored by so many medical professionals that it can get quite disheartening. Thanks again,

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Since you have Sjogrens, try getting in through the rheumatology department?

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Regarding your constant diarrhea – I have been in that situation. I could not keep up drinking fluids and always felt as if I’m going to pass out. One loses a lot of electrolytes
too- such as potassium.
Have you had a colonoscopy for diagnosis? I did and found out that I had autoimmune colitis. With treatment, the diarrhea stopped.
Check with your doctor if there is a place where you can get IV fluids- urgent care maybe.
I agree with another member that you should talk to your breast cancer team how they will manage you. The breast cancer definitely is a priority now and as I see it you are not alone in handling treatment and your GI problems.

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