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Getting a handicapped parking placcard before Summer arrives


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Okay, my cardio wouldn't fill out my paperwork to get a handicapped placcard for my car. With the warmer weather approaching, I really was hoping to have access to the handicapped spots this Summer. It's been really hard for me to go to the store, bank, etc. in the Summers--and I told my cardio I would only use it when I was feeling badly and/or in the hot weather, but he said he didn't think I needed the tag (it's not a license plate, but a hang tag that goes on the rearview mirror when you park).

So, I have my pain management appointment coming up, and am thinking of asking him. Anyone with a good idea of how to effectively argue my point? If it doesn't work with him, I have a neuro appoint a few weeks from now... I'm thinking the neuro is my most likely option of getting a "yes" because the paperwork does have a check book for a "neurological condition that limits my mobility or requires patient to rest after no more than 200 yards."

Your thougths and suggestions are much appreciated <_< Nina

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Nina,

I have a handicapped tag, but I'm in a wheelchair whenever I leave the house. I got the wheelchair first, and then asked my cardio for the tag. I suppose already being in the chair sold him.

I'd just tell your doc the truth about the situation, and tell him you only need the tag for the summer. Here in MD, doctors can give 30 or 90 day temp tags, so maybe they have those where you live too.

Best of luck,

Lauren

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Guest tearose

Maybe the cardio didn't consider it a "heart problem"?

You could ask the Neurologist....

I would ask my general pcp and think you must have one, right?

Your internist/pcp KNOWS that in the heat or a relapse you may be able to manage a short distance and that having to overdo would cause you serious problems.

Good thing to start thinking about the heat now Nina!

Maybe by July you'll have the tag! <_<

good luck, tearose

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They do have temp hang tags, but they'd have to be renewed every month. Also, b/c I have days when I'm symptomatic and it's not hot out, I'd really prefer to have a permanent version. I can't imagine that I'm going to get better -- as the years have progressed I've gotten somewhat more impaired.

Nina

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Nina,

you have EDS, if you have painful joints that are made worse by walking long distances as well as the blood pressure problems, if your pain management doc doesn't feel the tag is needed by symptoms from the blood pressure try the eds angle.

As EDSers have days where walking any distance is painful this might work as well.

depending on your symptoms.

good luck

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Nina,

I got mine filled out by the allergist on the basis that in winter the cold air hurt my lungs before I could get inside a store unless I parked close. Also I am so heat and sun sensitive I can't walk across a parking lot without getting heat symptoms.

The doctor has to sign that one of the qualifying stipulations is true. You can read what qualifies on the application. It pretty much came down to my not being able to walk more than so many feet. She picked that one.

Mine is not temporary.

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Mine hangs on rearview mirror and is good for 5 years.

But my being disabled and on premature Soc Sec and semi housebound made my situation very easy to get one. <_<

I went to the DMV one day and they even told me to sit in a chair on the side rather than wait in line (VERY nice as most folks that work there are very cranky)

But I don't know if it varies from state to state but I am pretty sure my temp placard is good for either 3 or 5 years....I think it's 5.

But here locally, docs are accused of giving them (Handicapped tags) out too easily so maybe they are cracking down and you need an ANS doc to explain the fluctuations.

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I just took my social security award letter to the dmv and got one for 6 years.. Hope it helps..

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Nina,

I got mine when I was still working full time. We talked to my family doctor, and he said it was a good idea, as I can not walk very faw with out needing to take a break. So I got mine under the DNV for being in a heart class for not being able to walk more then 200 feey without taking a break. Also I would think if you have a good relation ship with your reg family doctor I will beat he would give you one, and hopfully he would know how hard it it for people with POTS to be outside. I was really surprised how easy it was for me to get mine, in fact hear in Iowa they even gave me two so I have one in my car, and one in my husbands car. They where really nice at the DNV too. Good LUck I hope you are able to get one!

Amy

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ggggggggggrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. ggggggggggggggrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. and more gggggggggggggggrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

do i have permission to come gonk your cardio doc on the head nina? to perhaps knock some sense into him? this makes me REALLY frustrated b/c i think we're in a similar category in regard to our stubbornness so i'm guessing you didn't ask for the placard lightly.

i know for me i put it off longer than i should have and it was eventually for exactly what you're mentioning - that in warm weather, particularly large lots, bad days, etc there was no way i could safely manage. i only "gave in" (or rather came to my senses) when i realized that waiting for a close "regular" spot for up to an hour (yep, i've done it) in hot temps, having to sit down in the middle of the parking lot to prevent a blackout (not sure if that was really any safer, but eh well....), etc wasn't exactly the best thing to be doing. and sometimes i just wouldn't go places or if i couldn't find parking would leave.

and all that was when i was doing "better" aka working full time.

i honestly am baffled by your doc's response. i know when i brought it up to my PCP (back in maryland) i was super nervous, hesitant, explaining, etc. and she was like "what? you mean you don't already have one? of course you should!" she assumed that i would have had one from an earlier doc or specialist.

it was SO hard for me to ask in the first place that i think i might have retreated altogether had i been told no as you have. but you DEFINITELY need to perservere. there's no reason you shouldn't have one. and a permanant one at that. like you said, there's nothing to make you use it all of the time. initially i hardly used mine at all but boy was it a Godsend the few times i really needed it. i use it more now but still not every single time, eg. if there's a non-marked spot right next to the designated spot i'll take the non-marked one & save the other, knowing i'd be thankful if i were the one to come along later with nothing left but the back of the lot.

i also have a new awareness of not taking the van-accessible spots if i'm not using my wheelchair (which unfortunately isn't too often these days :) ) b/c - even though i have a car - i cannot get my chair out without the larger "clearing distance" on the side. i've had to leave places when there were/aren't spots. but i digress...

sophia - your "temporary" card, if 5 yrs, is not technically "temporary" at all but rather the most permanant they come for the state. in maryland even a "permanant" tag needs renewing every 3 yrs; in ohio the "permanant" tags still need renewal every 5 years. temporary tags can generally be from around 30-90 days depending on the state. anything longer than that merits a permanant tag. (if a doc feels it's only for a year, etc. s/he can still specify that.)

bottom line after all of my ramblings though is that i would ask anyone/everyone who you think might be amenable. i'm guessing/hoping that the others won't be as goofy as your cardio was.

B) melissa

p.s. sophia it's always refreshing to hear NICE D/BMV stories. i had one myself this year after moving (after a good number of others that were....er...not so nice. and they made me take a driving test since i couldn't stand for long. i asked them how often people stood up while driving...)

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I got mine thru my chiropactor ---which he highly recommended since i can hardly walk a long distance, and the fair was coming up so he knew that walking from the back lot wouldn't do me any good. He is super nice, i would say keep trying...i know for me people judge and what not as i am 20 yrs old but hey when i know i can't walk too far i use it or no other close spots open.

susie

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I have my rheumatologist write my handicap tag. It is temporary, but I only have to renew it every six months. Since I have eds and pots she understands that I need it to prevent dislocations and to keep from passing out. Your pain management may do that for you. I know how you feel because my cardio denied me to. I think since exercise is proven to improve cardiovascular health it is drilled into cardio docs head not to prescribe handicap tags. I hope you can get one!

Jaime

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My pain management appointment is in an hour... wish me luck. He's a really good guy, and I give him tons of credit for convincing me that the pain meds were necessary for me to continue functioning and working. He's a really tall, hulking guy who's now greying, so he looks something like a big grey teddybear.

Yes, it took a lot for me to get to the point of asking for the tag--as hard as asking for pain meds. For some reason I find it emotionally charged, probably because it's a visual reminder of my frailties, and a acknowledgement of the fact that my disability is permanent.

I sure could have used the tag yesterday. I had to go to Target to pick up some things, and i knew I was having a bad day from the time I woke up. It was warm here--nearly 80 farenheit. I do best until the temps go over 75. I nearly passed out in the store, but I kept pumping my calves. I was in the store less than 15 minutes, but I was red, sweaty, and my head was spinning. I did make it to my car, which was in the middle of the lot and cranked the airconditioning until I felt good enough to drive.

Okie dokie... taking deep breath and getting ready to pull on my support hose and head on out for the day. Nina

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The doctor I had at the time got me one without trouble. I had fainted towards the back of a parking lot in the summer. I bruised my chest badly on the car door since I fell forward and tried to catch myself and get in the car. It was in the city and NOBODY stopped to help me, ask if I needed help or call somebody.

It was a horrible experience. I just explained that to the doctor and that was enough for him to get me one. I also explained that when I am on my own, that if I need to go to the grocery store, etc. I often won't because of parking and feeling faint from standing combined with fatigue. Especially hard for me in really hot months. Having the tag helps me because I can park close to the store, people are more willing to help get my groceries in my car for me, etc. Also, if I were to faint in a handicapped spot, it's close to the store where more people would see me, etc.

I think for some of us, it comes down to safety. Now with lyme disease I need it even more, but thankfully I have the tag already and can use it when I need to.

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Hi Nina, That's awful that your doctor wouldn't approve you getting a handicapped permit! I got mine 2 years ago when I headed back to school. The parking situation is awful and I told my cardiologist that I was not able to walk 1/2 mile to class. Maybe you can tell one of your doctors you're having trouble getting to class?

good luck,

Pam

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Hi Nina,

Just curious to see how you made out today. It's funny you mentioned Target in your post, because that store gives me alot of troubles too!!! Anyhow, I hope your doc approves you getting a placcard. My mom has one because she is legally blind, so when I go out she is usually with me, so I'm all set for one. It would be nice to get one of my own however, if I decide to go to school, etc.

Best wishes!

Jacquie

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Nina, I hope you got your tag. I got mine from my PCP, he checked the box that said I was unable to walk for more than 50 feet without assistance. I have a tag that hangs from the rearview mirror since we have 3 cars and sometimes I ride with other people.

I use a cane most of the time but also use a wheelchair.

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I still don't get how you're all allowed to drive! The US authorities must be mad! If we were to pass out at the wheel, we could kill people! Prof Mathias told me I have to go at least 6 months without tipping over to even be CONSIDERED for a license!

That's actually the case here, too. And not all of us actually pass out. If a patient seizes or has a condition causing fainting, I think the doctor is supposed to notify the Department of Motor Vehicles, and then if the person spends 6 months without a seizure or fainting then he/she can drive again. That being said, it seems a lot of POTS/ NCS patients have an agreement with their doctors such that since we can generally tell when we're not going to be feeling well or have an episode come on, we know not to drive then.. so they don't get licenses taken away, but can recognize when they're well enough to drive. I hope so, anyway!

Since I don't actually pass out generally, I've not had to worry about this.. but if I don't have the energy to drive or am being too symptomatic I don't go. And on long trips my mom drives.. I've actually found that I feel worse when I'm being a passenger, though... while it would be safer at that point to ride next to someone, I generally do more poorly. Strange.

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I haven't ever fainted right out but always have warnings...the spins/vertigo/kaliedoscope of blurry vision/greying of vision and STRONG desire to be vertical.

I have POTS and even when pushed to sit or stand a couple minutes longer I just get very nauseated and hot ( but don't sweat) and have to lie down.

I spend much of my state "pre-syncopal" as do many others that don't flat out faint. We stay IN NEED of support...bed close by, for some wheelchairs work, especially the reclinind kind.

I have been known to lie back car seat and put feet on dashboard (Not to DRIVE LOL, but rest after leaving grocery store and thanfkully where I hve lived it's either been a 5 or 3 minute drive home)

So here, unless you are a flat out fainter, especially with little to no warning, folks can drive.

THAT SAID, there are many days I am just too, too lightheaded/dizzie or whatever the rotten feeling is and I will not drive. The BRAIN FOG is dreadful on these days as well. So many of us that drive know NOT to on some days...at least, that hs been my experience.

But yes, fainting can get you in trouble in the US as a driver as well. If something happens, and the courts find out you have a history of this ...I don't know how they react.

Many folks have seizure disorders and or narcolepsy and drive but have medications to avoid it.

So...but if you are totally disabled, you have to be your own watch dog...in more ways than one!

<_<

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I haven't driven in about 3 years. I am just not willing to take the chance that I could hurt someone else, because I'm too stubborn to give it up. I could never live with myself.

I stopped driving long before I started passing out. it has made things a lot trickier for getting places, but that's okay with me. I figure if i can't walk 50 feet, i have no business driving. I never thought i would be a fainter, but there you go, I am now...morgan

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