pinkpuppy9

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Minnerbelle

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There was a recent thread on this, and there is a member here who is going through fourth year clinical rotations with a condition that causes physical weakness and autonomic issues as well. You should connect up.
 

dyachei

vet robot pirate zombie
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I have a connective tissue disorder, so the main issue is that my joints aren't held together properly, causing subluxes, dislocations and a ton of pain.
I have EDS and am a GP vet in FL.

I won't lie. It's difficult to be a GP vet when your joints fail often. I can't kneel on the ground with my patients (I used to) until it started causing meniscal tears. So I make sure I have a stool in every room. That I have well trained techs that I can rely on. And that I'm not the only vet in the practice (in case I have a bad day and can't perform surgery).

My biggest fear is having an accident with an animal and not being able to recover. I love what I do. I can't see myself doing anything else. I have considered transitioning to more admin or hands off veterinary work, but decided I wanted to do what I currently do for as long as possible.

I'd be happy to answer any specific questions.
 

wheelin2vetmed

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But my condition will likely get significantly worse, and I have no idea how idea how disabled I'm going to become (it's possible I will wind up using a wheelchair). So what do I do? I'd be happy doing research or many other of the jobs you can do with a vet tech license, but I have yet to do my large animal training, and that simply would not be possible for me. I love both the animal and medical components too much to be happy doing just one or the other.
Hey there,

I'm a non-trad 28 y/o male who just finished applying to vet school. I was injured in a catastrophic accident back in 2012 that paralyzed me from the waist down. I know our disabilities are different, but if you ever want to talk about disability within vet medicine (granted I get accepted somewhere), or how I'm dealing with certain situations, I'm here as a resource; more than willing to chat on the phone as well.

I'm very much a "figure something out until I can do it" kind of guy, and a realist as well. So you're probably right, certain aspects of large animal is probably out of the question, but I believe you can have a very fruitful and rewarding career.

A lot of things are up-in-the-air regarding your disability at the moment: the extent of it, if it'll get worse, etc. Nothing you can really do except play it by ear, and maybe think ahead to tools and equipment that could help you if you end up in a seated position like me. I'm interested in surgery, so I've begun researching options for standing wheelchairs and other equipment that can get me upright at the OR table.

It's going to take ingenuity and resolve, but so does anything in life that's worthwhile. You got this :).
 

dyachei

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I'm lucky in that my boss (our only vet, and the practice owner) is extremely supportive, and I have no doubt that he'd make any accommodations I need.

I guess the big question right now is: do I bother trying to find a way to get my tech license without having to do large animal and see if I can find a level of hands-on work that I'm capable of right now (knowing I may not be capable of doing it for much longer) or do I go for a degree like veterinary management, and resign myself to the business side of things? I've also considered getting a zoology degree, and focusing on research.

Dyachei- I have EDS too. And all of the lovely things that come along with it like Dysautonomia, DDD, Scoliosis, Arthritis, Chiari, Urinary & GI issues, etc.
I think you know this, but the more you can protect your body, the longer it will last. I didn't find out I had real issue until I was in a car accident (there were signs before, but I didn't really know it wasn't normal). Since then I've had no recourse because I'm trapped with student loans. It's extremely nerve-wracking to know that if I can't work, we can't make ends meet. I'm mostly dealing with the DDD/arthritis/joint disease side of things. Though I have other symptoms as well.

Dysautonomia tends to create dangerous situations for you and those around you (particularly when working with large animals). But only you know how it affects you.

Personally, I think the challenges that EDS presents make it easier to be a practice manager or research. It isn't a matter of finding work-arounds. Every stress you put on a joint puts you closer to permanent disability even with them. That said, if you know that this is all you want to do, go talk to a tech school and discuss your concerns about your disability. Most will work with you (though the various societies require certain tasks for you in order to be accredited).
 

dyachei

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Dyachei- Thank you so much. I've known those things for a while now, but sometimes I feel like I'm overreacting (partially because my parents don't exactly believe there's anything wrong with me)...and hearing it from somebody else who not only knows the condition, but knows the field really helps reinforce the realities of the situation. In a bizarre way, it's comforting. Now to just figure out what to major in!

I hope you don't mind, but I shared parts of this conversation with a new-found EDS friend who is in exactly the same situation at her clinic!
I have absolutely no problem with that. Always willing to talk to anyone about it. I'm also available by private message if needed
 

Minnerbelle

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Eds as in ehlers-danlos? Small world, as I have it as well. Pretty mild so it doesn't affect my day to day all that much at this point, but i do notice things a bit more each year.
 

dyachei

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Eds as in ehlers-danlos? Small world, as I have it as well. Pretty mild so it doesn't affect my day to day all that much at this point, but i do notice things a bit more each year.
Yep. I'm hypermobility type. But the car accident was really awful in furthering the issues I have from it. It's basically every joint except most of the small joints now.