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I felt invisible at doctors appointment :(
5 Replies
ptalana - March 11

Yesterday I had a doc appointment, I had the intention of discussing the extreme cramping in my groin and the fact that my numbness and tingling in hands, legs, and feet have gotten worse. We were also to discuss how the dilaudid was working.
I had been keeping a diary of when and how much of my meds were taken on a daily basis, as per request. So I gave this to my doctor, he glanced at it and handed it back to me. Then told me it was too extensive and only wanted me to write columns and tick off how many percs were taken, o.k no big deal. But honestly he hasn't even really looked at me so far??? He had a nurse practitioner shadowing him that day and seemed to only look at him and it seemed like he was talking to me through him.
For the past few visits I've noticed a marked difference in my doctor. I feel rushed through appointments, and pretty much ignored. I leave feeling like I have just been wasting his time. It seems that only when my hubby is able to come to my appointments with me do I feel like I'm taken seriously. Unfortunately this isn't always possible.
I'm not sure if this is because he is so rushed, or that he truly doesn't take fibro seriously????
I truly thought of my doc as a partner in not only diagnosing but treating fms. I think I've been very compliant and have been willing to follow all suggestions.
At the end of my appointment as the doc and nurse practitioner were leaving, the nurse asked if I needed help in getting into wheelchair. I was very touched by this, as my doc not once had ever asked if I needed assistance.
Not sure if what I've been feeling is all in my head, or that I really am a inconvenience to my doc. It's such an empty feeling :(
Thanks for listening to me go on and on......
Hope today is a good one for all, Patty

 

Canada17 - March 11

Regardless of whether or not your doctor actually feels inconvenienced by you, he is acting that way. It is good that he recognized Fibromyalgia and was able to diagnose you but if you aren't happy with the treatment you are getting from him, you need to be vocal about that. There is no shame in not "meshing" with your doctor.

Maybe there is a personal reason why he is acting so rushed and he doesn't even realize that it is affecting the care of his patients. That doesn't make it acceptable though, he is a doctor and trained for years to learn how to put everything else aside when he walks into a room to treat a patient and deal specifically with that patient.

Maybe he was forced to have this person shadow him and he feels inconvenience by HIM and not by you. I urge you to discuss it with him.

When I was pregnant, I went in to my doctor worried that I had high blood pressure. I had all the signs and symptoms of it and was quite concerned. When I made the appointment, I did so at his office with his receptionist and she gave me a card with the date and time. When I arrived for my appointment, I had to wait an hour because she forgot to write my appointment down in the book and had to "squeeze me in".

I was agitated (as is one of the symptoms of high blood pressure) and that was made worse by the receptionist who I already didn't trust (she was a bit of a flake - like the hair twirling, bubble gum chewing kind). When I got into the room with the doctor, he asked me what was wrong; I told him why I had come in. He said that I looked upset and wanted to know why, so I told him what happened. I had sat for an hour trying to calm myself down because I knew it wasn't good to get myself worked up and I had done a pretty effective job, but talking about it again made me more upset. So, instead of trying to calm the pregnant lady down who came in worried about her blood pressure being too high, he decided it would be more appropriate to lecture me! He told me that I was lucky he saw me at all and that most doctors make their patients wait upwards of an hour an a half for their appointments. That sent me through the roof. I had expected him to not understand but he could have waited until the end of the appointment, after he had calmed me down, to basically tell me doctors don't give a damn about making their patients wait and insinuating that they actually do it on purpose.

I ripped the blood pressure cuff off my arm and walked out. I've never looked back. I spent four years visiting walk in clinics before finding a doctor who was accepting new patients and it was the best decision I made for my own health and peace of mind. But, this doctor was a real piece of work, he was the same doctor who refused to sign insurance papers that would have allowed me to continue massage therapy because he thought the pain was "all in my head" and wanted to perform hypnotherapy on me instead.

I hope that if you do decide to speak to your doctor about how he makes you feel during appointments he is more understanding and compassionate than the old quack who I was seeing.

 

Fantod - March 11

Hi Patty - I'm sorry you had such a negative experience during your doctor's visit. He is probably every bit as frustrated as you are by the never ending parade of symptoms you experience. But that does not give him license to ignore or not discuss your issues when you have an appointment. It should not be necessary for your husband to be there to receive the same standard of treatment. You need to let him know how you feel about what happened yesterday.

It is also possible that he is simply burned out. If that is the case, he either needs to take some time off or retire. Those of us who are chronically ill must have doctors who are going to be supportive and listen. You are not an inconvenience and you should not feel that way. I know through reading your posts that you are a cooperative patient and that you respect your doctors. The same courtesy should be extended to you.

Try not to dwell on this situation too much today. It will only pull you down and he doesn't deserve the energy you could be using for more pleasant and productive things today. Take care and KBO!

 

tnichel - March 11

Ugh! I think it may be time for you to find a new doc. I have never had a doc tell me my journal was too extensive to look at. He could have at least perused it. All my doctors ask to make photo-copies of my journal. I'm sorry you had to go through all that but thanks for sharing your feelings. We've all been there so know that we support you here.

 

ptalana - March 12

Thanks for the advice guys, and responding to my venting. I've had the same doctor for over 20yrs, up till my accident I rarely ever saw him. So I'm not sure if this is just that I've caught him on off days, or if he's always been this way. I've been holding off finding a new doctor as my hubby and I are planning on moving in about a year.
I'm not sure if it's worth trying to find a new pcp, I may just have to suck it up.
Thanks again, Patty

 

Canada17 - March 12

If you didn't just catch your doctor on a bad day and this is the real him, a year is a long time to "suffer through it", we all suffer so much as it is.

A year of living with the stress of not being taken seriously could really take a toll on you. If you talk to your doctor and he doesn't have a good explanation then it can't hurt to look for a new doctor.

I agree that it was unconscionable of your doctor to request that you keep a log and then not read it. I could understand if he looked at it quickly and then handed it back to you and asked you to have the front desk photocopy it for him. But to say it's too much and not give it the time of day...what did he except you to do? Obviously you are more intelligent than he gave you credit for because we all know the more info we can give our doctor the better able he is to treat us.

I wish for you strength to confront him and, if necessary, find a new doctor. You deserve it.

 

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