Monday, December 9, 2013

Taking care of myself

One of the items on my "to do" list is to ensure that I address all of my medical needs now, before my current fiscal year ends under my medical insurance plan, next June 30th, as all in plan expenses are covered 100% since we've maxed our high deductible earlier this Summer. Off the list as of this afternoon, was a visit to the dermatologist.

Included in my visit was a fully body exam for any possible issues with moles, as I noted several newbies this past year. Luckily, as I suspected, there are no issues, just some normal moles, some signs of sun damage from my youth (not that I was ever a sun worshiper!). Nothing of concern. I also addressed some chronic issues, and got refill RX's to mail in to our new, mail order company-again at no cost to me. I'll order now, in Dec, again in June, each time getting a 3 month supply. Half a year's worth of meds for free. Awesome. 

While I view a dermatological appointment as a consult with a medical specialist for a health issue, I've noted that this practice has become more and more like this:

Welcome to Fairfield county, sigh.  . .while I do care about how I look, how I feel about my appearance, I am at the Dermatologist for MEDICAL needs primarily, not Botox, fillers, "MD prescribed" OTC beauty regimens etc. I've learned to ask the right questions: 

MD: "You have several options: you can use our product line glycolic acid cleansers or a cleanser with scrubbing beads in it, lasers are also good at treating this . . also a moisture barrier lotion for your hands for during the day, after hand washing for instance We offer one in our Doctor's product line."
Me: "Can I find a glycolic acid OTC at a local store such as Walmart or CVS? Are there any brands that you would recommend over others?"
MD: "There are several brands out there on the market, any will do the trick."
Me (thinking to self:  -Ok, we'll not doing lasers, and a trip to the beauty product aisle at the discount grocer (thinking Xpect Discounts would be a great place to start), then trying WM before heading to CVS.) Ok, I'll try the OTC products and if I'm not happy with the results, I'll return in 3 months."
MD: "Sounds like a plan."

So bottom line, today's MEDICAL consult was a freebie.
- I will receive free RX's through the mail. 
-I will continue using my discount drug store products whenever possible. I will check to see if my HSA will cover this cost. If not, it'll be relatively minor. For instance, I use Dove soap, bought on sale, often with coupons. I use Oil of Olay complete with SPF 15 daily-on sale with coupon. Witch hazel is my astringent when needed in warm weather. So, I'll be adding some sort of exfoliant to the mix. Fine. In addition to my RX creams/ointments for ezcyma, I'll have OTC lotions, as I already do. I find there is a product in the Suave line that works well for me. 
- I have a very minor issue that will need removal (benign cyst on my scalp that just appeared. I've had them before, runs in my family. I choose to get them removed before they become painful. They are always sent out for analysis, just in case, but we (MD and I) both feel that this is again a benign, fatty cyst). I'll schedule that for Feb or April break. A quick, in office procedure. Done. Will be covered in full.

I am choosing to also address some cosmetic issues. MD willingly offered a cost per visit for these treatments, estimating how many I'd need. I know that this is considered totally cosmetic in nature, and will budget accordingly. These treatment procedures are things I've done before, my last visit for these same complaints was in 2005.  I've got this, I know what to expect.

So, I'll call tomorrow, and set up my cyst removal appointment and then what I'm calling cosmetic appointment. Just getting these things done.


Anonymous said...

My families dermatologist offers lots of services too. It's not just a Fairfield a County thing.

CTMOM said...

I've been a patient in this practice since moving to CT in 1987. It was a medical based practice when I started with them. Enter the office suite and it's been totally made over, marble "Spa like" feel decor. Once you are escorted to the back, where the exam rooms are, it's still the same 1980's decor. : )