Telemedicine and My Pressure Sore
During the coronavirus crisis it seems like the world is standing still, but even now we have medical issues that arise. Recently, I noticed that I had a small pressure spot and was worried about it getting bigger and causing a major issue. Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus pandemic, I can’t just go to my wound doctor’s office because it is closed. I called the doctor to ask what I should do. Her office asked me to attend a virtual visit with my wound doctor. My first thought was how am I going to do a virtual visit about a wound on my upper thigh? Do I conduct the visit in bed having somebody hold the computer up to my wound? I decided that I should take daily pictures of my wound instead. I agreed to the virtual appointment, which was two days from when I called the office. Each day I took pictures of my wound so that my doctor could get an idea of exactly how it looked.
The morning of my appointment I made sure to download the virtual app for my meeting that the doctor’s office asked me to use (I suggest testing the app or other means of video chat/video conference that you’ll be using before your appointment). I then emailed the pictures of my wound to my doctor. Once we were able to get on the virtual visit together, she opened the email and was very appreciative of being able to look at not just one picture, but several pictures taken at different times. She said that usually when she does virtual visits, the patients don’t think to take pictures, so they have to start from scratch. Because I took the pictures and sent them in advance of our appointment, she was able to look at them in detail and prescribe the correct wound medication for me, which I received in two days.
It’s been five days since my appointment and three days since I began using the medication. I’ve already seen a big difference and the wound is almost healed. I think it’s healing so quickly because I didn’t hesitate to call my doctor, even though I was worried about going to the office. I was so relieved to get the help from my doctor without going to the office and potentially exposing myself to the coronavirus.
As we all know, pressure wounds are worrisome and can be very dangerous. Please don’t take a chance of trying to treat a wound or any other problems by yourself out of fear of going to the hospital or doctor’s office due to the coronavirus. There’s a good chance your doctor will be able to do a virtual visit with you or at least give you the correct information over the phone so you can start to address the situation.
Written by TJ Griffin, Peer & Family Support Program Coordinator. To obtain a peer mentor, please go to www.ChristopherReeve.org/peer.
For more resources on the coronavirus, visit the Reeve Foundation COVID-19 Information Center.