Robert A Hunter
- Cowdenbeath Fife United Kingdom
My name is Robert Hunter. As of writing this I am 60 years young.
I have several health problems over the years. I suppose the main one is Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and from that comes the others, though the diagnoses of MS didn`t come first.
Optic Neuritis was the first main health problem that had (or should I say that it was the first that I knew about at the time).
The second health problem I had I didn`t know the name of until years later, just after I had my Large Bowel removed and they had Biopsied my Large Bowel that I was informed that it was Ulcerative Colitis that I had, and it was that that had which had been causing me over the last 5 or so year to spend a lot of my time on the toilet sitting on the pan or cleaning the poo that had filled my pants, running down my legs, socks, shoes and floor. I think this could be what has destroyed my sense of smell for later in live (mind you it came in handy years later when changing my children and grandchildren nappies).
Having my Large Bowel removed meant I now have to wear an ileostomy bag for the rest of my life. I had the operation in April 1980.
I have had a few different bags over the years and the one I used the longest was one from Salts called light White. For a lot of years I used a belt that came with the bag along with a cover that went over the bag. I can`t remember just how long I used this bag but it must be over 20 years.
The reason I changed was that my stoma was getting bigger along with my waist and near the end there seemed to be a smell coming from the bag even though no leaks could be found, but evenwith my poor sense of smell I was finding it quite bad to the point I had to speak to my local Stoma Nurse at the Victoria Hospital Kirkcaldy, whereit so happens I had the operation that removed my large bowel.
I tried a few different bags before I started using Pelicans Platinum Contour Drainable Ref: 220415. I get the bags delivered to my house via Salts Medilink which is a free service I have used most of the tie I have had to use bags. You place the order with them and they ontact your GP to let them know you had placed the order and the Doctors send the company the prescription for the bags. Though you will have had to see a Stoma Nurse before you had told your GP that you are starting to use that Manufactoers bags. You can`t just change bags and expect your GP to write a prescritption for them, it doesn`t wirk that way any more.
When I first started using the bags all you hd to do was speak to your GP and if he or she was ok with it you could put in an order for the bags you wanted, but as I said it doesn`t work that way anymore certainly not in Fife.
The Third health problem I have is Multiple Sclerosis which after reading up on it I found that Optic Neuritis and Ulcerative Colitis can be symtoms of MS. I was told that I had MS in 1994 I think and that 3 parts of my brain and 2 parts of my spine was damaged.
I had left my job about 2 years before I was diagnosed with have MS. I have memory problems which should maybe say is more like I am very forgetful which I think is one of my main problems and had caused me a lot of problems while I was working and has in no small part lead to having depression.
Over the years since this I was told I have MS I have went from walking without a walking stick to using one, then to using 2 crutches and a wheelchair. I also use a mobility scooter. I had been told at the Smart Centre at the Astley Ainslie Hospital when I was sent there years ago that I should be using a powered wheelchair but I like my rambling and I didn`t think a powered wheelchair would be able to let me go where I like to go rambling so I kept on using a mobility scooter, but I still use crutches and a manaul wheelchair when I have to.
In recent years I was also diagnosed with fibromyalgia which can also be a symptom of MS.
A couple of years ago my wife was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer in her left hand pelvis, Chondrosarcoma which can only be removed by surgery, which was done about 2 years ago now by a Mr Patton in the Edinburgh Royal Imfirmary.
During her recovery in the Victoria Hospital Kirkcaldy more cells were found so they had to go in again to remove what was left of the bone in the left hand side of her pelvis.