How much do you trust your doctor?
Or better yet, how comfortable do you feel with your doctor?
These are really important questions to ask yourself.
We trust doctors with our lives, they help us take care of our health and overall wellness.
I want to share a little bit of my experience with doctors while stabilizing my Dad’s health.
We were recommended to go see a Dermatologist who from the beginning had great bedside manners.
He was attentive, he listened to us and asked questions about my Dad’s medical history and current condition at the time of his first appointment.
This was back in October of last year.
We have seen this doctor about 6 or 8 times since that first visit (I can’t remember anymore).
We loved the staff and felt comfortable with him from the beginning, especially my Dad.
Last December, my Dad had an episode that landed him in the ER.
Per the ER doctor’s recommendation, we went to see an immunologist/allergist.
My brother had also been pressing us to see another doctor because my Dad’s progress was really slow at that point.
So we did.
We arrived at the immunologist/allergist office, signed in and were directed to one of the examining rooms.
When the doctor walked in, he stayed away in a corner the whole time (note that my Dad’s condition is NOT contagious).
He then proceeded to recommend us a $37,000 a year treatment that will make him feel better (without even examining my Dad).
The immunologist didn’t even ask my Dad to remove his shirt to see his skin condition.
I then asked a key question I feel many of us forget to ask:
Is this treatment going to CURE him?
Doctor’s answer was: No, this is just to improve his condition, and this treatment is for life.
So my Dad and I walked out of the appointment feeling so disappointed. $37,000 annually for a treatment that is not going to cure him seemed so impossible to do.
But then my brain started going 100 miles per hour, thinking about my grandfather, who was also diagnosed with psoriasis over 2 decades ago, a disease that has NO cure, but he actually did get cured.
My grandfather completed his treatment and never for the next decade that he lived had any skin issues or another psoriasis episode. (At this point my Dad and I believe this is more of a genetic condition and not so much psoriasis per se, even the doctors that have seen him won’t fully diagnose him with psoriasis).
Hmmm, this made me wonder even more.
Then I remember that first visit to the dermatologist back in October, who after examining my Dad very thoroughly said to me: don’t worry we will cure him.
He then turned to my Dad and repeated the same words: don’t worry we will cure you.
Why am I sharing this?
Part of our health and well-being journey in life is to surround ourselves with people we trust.
Many times I’ve found myself sitting in a doctor’s office frustrated after the examination because I didn’t get my questions answered.
Yes, you have the right to ask questions and also you have the right to find doctors that you trust.
Remember, your health is so valuable, it is the core of your life, don’t settle for anything less than great!
This is why I wanted to share with you a few tips and recommendations of how to create a healthy relationship with your doctors.
As patients, we all have rights and responsibilities.
Here are my top 7 recommendations when building a relationship with your physician:
- Write down the questions you have for your doctor before your appointment
- Don’t be afraid to ask for detail explanations if you don’t understand what the doctor is explaining
- If you don’t feel comfortable with a doctor, find a second service provider, this is your right
- Create a healthy relationship with the office staff, especially the nurses as they can be a great source of information and support
- Ask about side effects of any medication that you are recommended to take
- If you are going through a difficult health condition, ask if the treatment is the recommended path to being cured or just a maintenance treatment
- Ask if there are any lifestyle changes you can apply to improve your health condition