Thursday, October 20, 2011

Who To Trust?

I have trouble trusting doctors because I've been dealing with them all my life, privately and professionally. It is annoying not to be able to trust a doctor when he/she supposed to help you treat your ailments. I need to know that he/she did the best he/she could for my well-being. I need to trust him/her.

Sadly, I have this gut feeling that some doctors are not to be trusted that they act for our best interest or they have bad bedside manner.

I have this feeling that some (especially Indonesian) doctors have more trouble acknowledging that they have limited knowledge about certain thing. The most annoying part for me when this happened was they made it sound like I was crazy/psychosomatic, and they talked condescendingly. I have more respect when they acknowledge that they know little about it and will try to find out about it more. I feel safer to put my life in such person's hands.

I was rather annoyed when sharing my experience living with trigeminal neuralgia to a bunch of Indonesian doctors, one doctor's immediate comment was, "there are psychosomatic patients, and it's difficult because they will pilling up all symptoms." Seriously, out of all comments, he chose that! It is 180 degrees different approach when minutes later I told M about it and his reaction was genuinely wanting to help me by asking a lot of questions to figure out what to do but he couldnt because it was too late to do anything about. Why it was too late? Because my Dutch doctor refused to believe me when I said something was terribly wrong, he kept saying I had to wait for my body to heal until it was too late to reverse the damage. In the beginning the only person who was there for me was my orthodontist. He put me in contact with Prof. K. I still remember how relieved I was when Prof K said that I wasnt just acting up, I was really in pain.

A pregnant friend also had her share with doctors. She went to two doctors and was told that she also has a myoma. I told her to see a friend of my family. She went and was told that she has a myoma and due to the location she will need a caesarian. My friend called me up after her appointment and complained why the previous two doctors didnt say anything about caesarian?

I have a friend who during his medschool made a mistake of pulling a perfectly good tooth in stead of a bad one. His excuse to the patient was, "that's the procedure of getting to that bad tooth." He was lucky the patient didnt press charges. I'd have sued him if he did that to me. I get that people made mistake, but it's what you do afterward that counts.

I wish the next doctor I'll be seeing is able to say, 'well, my first impression is good, but I don't want to offer you anything that is not true.'


colson said...

I'm sorry to read about the awful experience of medical errors you suffered ( suffers) from. It indeed isn't an exception.

One of my daughters in law had similar experiences. Six years ago she was diagnosed as a serious rheumatoid arthritis - but only after about eight years of terrible pain due to wrong treatments.

I guess it is partly due to the sometimes God-like status of doctors and sometimes to lack of interest ( maybe due to fatigue).

triesti said...

@colson you are right, in Jkt, it is also because they want to see as much patients as possible. They are not interested to answer patients questions.

Poor thing, she must be suffering so much. Was it in NL? Because I have this feeling they try not to give out painkiller too easy fearing people get addicted to it. In USA they give out painkiller a bit too easy methinks.

Fingers crossed we'll be ok and meet a good doctor;)

colson said...

@ triesti: She actually was lucky to run into my son - and of course he was even luckier he ran into her :). When she arrived in the Netherlands for the first time suffering from an acute active RA phase ( the diseasein spite of her specific physical complaints had not been detected in the many years before!), she, via my wife's ( great) GP, got to a gentle, wise, old specialist in the UMC (Utrecht).

Thuogh RA still is incurable, it is pretty well under control now and with the medical help "her" medical staff she has given birth to a perfectly healthy baby-girl (the light of my life, by the way :))

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