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Health topic OT i suppose
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ddnos posted:
Some of you may know that about a year ago, I had some issues with my pcp (Cathe) - she wasns't as competent as normal and her memory was declining. She has been my PCP for 20 years, and during a majority of that time, she's been brilliant and my biggest advocate. But she's getting older, and I believe that she's at least a year overdue of retiring. She's not totally incapable of doing her job because it seems to come and go - but you don't want a doctor who's skills come and go, you know?

So starting about 2 months ago I've had some medical issues. At first she seemed to be handling it appropriately, then slowly downhill, but nothing major, but neglecting to explain things that she normally would and when I'd ask her (sometimes via email) she would never reply (not like her) Btw, I'm allowed to email her, so I"m not overstepping boundaries by doing so.

So I've had 2 blood tests, both of which showed that my blood is low. When she first saw those results, she reacted totally inappropriatly, i.e. in call caps, HOLY CRAP! YOU NEED A COLONSCOPY RIGHT AWAY!" She told me that I was losing blood and the intestines are the first logical place to look. So I've had 3 different tests to seach the intestinese for internal bleeding, ie. colonoscopy, upper endoscopy, and capsule endoscopy. The first 2 tests results were fine, but we're still waiting for the results of the last one. So I asked Cathe, "Could you please clear this up for me. You said the blood tests showed internal bleeding, but what if all the intestinal tests show no bleeeding, does that mean there is internal bleeding somewhere else in my body?" She said, "no" She said that when one's blood is low, it could indicate internal bleeding, so they rule that out first with the intestine tests. If my last test is normal, then she will refer me to a Hematolgist, blood specialist, to try to figure out why my blood is low.

Well, in meantime, I had to suggest to Cathe to wait to see Hematologist till I've been taking the poly iron for at least a month, then get blood retested to see if maybe my blood levels are normal. To do that rather than just seeing the Hematologist without re-checking my blood. I would have NEVER had to think of something so simple as that because she would have.

Then, in same time frame, I saw cathe for increaed body pain. For the first time in 20 years, she looked at me and said i dom't know what to do. I don't know who to refer you to. That's it! End of appt! So I did research on my own adn found a rheumatolgist who was also covered on my insurance, then emailed Cathe to ask for referral to that perosn. I ended up emailing her at least 8 times and leaeving vmail 3 times; but she ignored me! I was not happy, to say the least. I assured her that I was not TELLING her what to do, but that I was ASKING. I didn't want her to think I was being disrespecful. FInally yesterday she called when I was out and she appologiized and that she had no answer as to why...said this was not like her....said sorry again...seemed almost to be getting choked up toward the end. I emailed her back to thank her and encouraged her to see her doctor if she needs help. She also has bipolar.

She did give me the referral for the Rheumatoligst. I want a complete evaluation because havent had one in well over 15 years. I have new and worse pains and just want it to be reevaluated.

I will soon be asking Cathe for a referral for someone else to replace her to have someone before she retires.
Sorry I talk too much. I'm going to try to edit and get rid of some of these words lol
Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown
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lexismom11 responded:
It's a valid concern to be worried about the level of care you are getting. If you don't do anything about it, she may just get worse. You can't afford to let this go because it is your health on the line. It's good that you are going to get a referral to someone else to eventually replace her. She's been your doctor for 20 years? That's a long time so I know she has done a lot of good things for you. That's the only way I would stay with a doctor for that long. Good luck with the rheumatoligist. It's probably time for a new evaluation because things change over the years.
 
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slik_kitty responded:
I hope she gets you a new doc soon. you've stuck it out long enough and need to take care of you. hugs
 
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ddnos replied to slik_kitty's response:
Thanks lexismom and kitty - yes, she's been an excellent pcp for me over the years, but unfortunately, it's time to move on. It's more difficult with her because she has done so much for me and was biggest advocate. But there is a time for everything to end. I will soon be asking her for a referral and probably just saying that I want to start with someone new while she's still working rather than waiting till she retires. We'll see.

Thanks for your encouragement

Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown
 
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bpcookie responded:
Hey Doodles, Wow, glad you will be seeing another Dr. once she retires. I know that she has been a wonderful Dr. to you for a very long time. I hope your next Dr. is just as good.

Good luck honey. hugs
The world is round and the place which may seem like the end may also be only the beginning. ~Ivy Baker Priest
 
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ibex7 responded:
Debbie,

Remember that when you see a physician (PCP, too), you deserve the highest level of professionalism the specialty can offer. Saying "I don't know" is not an acceptable answer.

You should already have a referral to see the professional that "Cathie" deems more knowledgable than herself. Statistically, we bipolar folks are more likely to complain of symptoms, yet that does not mean that Dr.s should ignore our symptoms. Many doctors will respond bruskly to our complaints in order to "call our bluff" then comment in their notes that they suspect our upset has a "neurotic" cause.

I am impressed you are already acquainted with "ASKING"
questions and avoiding ego related replies from your docs.

Keep asking until you get a course of action that seems logical to you. And talk to your trusted friends who will give you their support.
-goat
 
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ddnos replied to bpcookie's response:
Cookie, yes, she has been THE best PCP for me - she's been an all in one doc in that hse has taken care of my regular needs as well as been my med management doctor. She has been an advocate for me more than anyone else. Having said that, it's making me hard to leave. I know she's not the same as she used to be, but I guess I've been trying to extend my time with her as much as possible. I guess I"ve already done that. I have a physical with her toward the end of the month and maybe during that visit, I will ask her for a referral for another doctor. I will just tell her that I want someone in place before she retires.

Thanks for your concern.

Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown
 
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ddnos replied to ibex7's response:
Hi Goat, I"ve never been one afraid to ask questions or to question doctors - I figure it's my body and so need to know what's going on rather than just accepting what they do.

Cathe did finaly call me and appolgize for her neglect of replying to me and said she had no answer for it, but admitted taht it wasn't like her. She seemed almost in tears and embarrassed. I know that wasns't easy for her. Maybe it was a good thing in that it brought her closer to realizing that she shoulda be retiring soon - like 2 years ago!

I will for sure be asking for a referral and she has alreadyd started taht she will come with me to my first appt so as to explain certain more difficult aspects of my case with the new doctor. I would rather this happehn before Cathe retires than after.

Thanks for your concern
Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown


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