Finding Good Doctors – It ISN’T a Myth!

First, Do No Harm has a list of fat-friendly professionals (those seemingly mythical folk of healing) to search and I am pleased to find that I now have 2 names that I can add to the list.

Just yesterday I had a very quick and quite pleasant visit at the doctor’s office.  This was actually a yearly check-up and comes at the end of a couple of other pleasant visits with a gastroenterologist last month.  There are, more often than not, stories available about unpleasant experiences that people have had with doctors; I have plenty of my own as well.  However, having had so many visits for various reasons lately and not having left any of those visits completely PISSED OFF has really made me think there might just be some hope out there. 

This post was triggered after reading in article in USA Today “What Doctors Don’t Tell You“, in which this quote jumped out at me:

[D]octors don’t like to admit that many test results are not as black and white as they appear. Communicating shades of gray is harder, he says, and not taught in medical school. And while patients assume doctors rely on science, “it’s not uncommon for the decisions we make to be entirely based on opinion,” Newman says.

But doctors should know, he says, that patients are just as satisfied when physicians take a few minutes to listen, explain why antibiotics won’t help and suggest some symptom relief — relief that won’t come with side effects such as diarrhea, yeast infections and allergic reactions.

That statement seems to jive very well with a lot of what those of us who have complaints against doctors, or who have finally just gotten so fed up with that we no longer GO to the doctor, are most irritated with:  that they are making assumptions and/or even entire decisions relevant to ones path of medical health, based solely on their own preconceived notions.  When really, what people (at least me and likely others) really want is ANSWERS!  TALK to us!  Let us ask questions and consider them honestly.  You don’t need to HAVE all the answers right in front of you but allow us patients to speak with you person to person.

Not all patients, and I suspect not even MOST patients are simpering idiots.  Yes, even those of us who happen to be fat can be interested in our health beyond advice to join the latest diet craze.  Yes, we KNOW we’re fat.  We’re not unobservant of the fact and thus incapable of understanding OTHER medical information that is actually pertinent to our health.  Perhaps some of us are actively trying to eradicate this “surplus” adipose tissue because we’ve been duped by the media’s incessant hounding of fat as the ultimate harbinger of untimely death.  Perhaps not.  However, if a doctor is unable to move BEYOND that little snagging point to discuss other, likely MORE PERTINENT information then perhaps it is another case of a doctor being a medical bully and jumping to make a snap decision based on their opinions (such as the opinion that fat is a symptom of sloth, ignorance, overeating and lying).

Now I must say that my Gastroenterologist has been a fabulous doctor and she is very much into patient education.  I have spoken with her (and the emphasis is on WITH; it wasn’t a case of being lectured TO) on any tests I have taken or symptoms or medications that might be used.  She answered my questions about my health issues and was honestly concerned with finding the problem and in the interim making me feel BETTER.  What a freaking pleasure to be ill and not thought of as an inconvenience but rather as a person with an actual need for healing and understanding; to have my symptoms and problems ADDRESSED instead of summarily dismissed.

It was honestly such a pleasant experience that reading the above referenced article really made me think upon what a rarity such an occurrence actually IS!  Especially when it was followed just yesterday with an equally pleasant head-to-head with my gyno. 

So the point is that decent human beings DO exist and some even go into the medical fields.  Unlike the Yeti, a good doctor is not a myth.  Although they may be so rare as to make you THINK they are!

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