Sometimes I get so flipping mad.
I’ve been at home for 2 solid days, doping myself up on motrin and flexiril, because I sustained a back injury about a year before I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease.
So what is it about this injury that makes me so insane? It’s the fact that I didn’t have to be in this position if it wasn’t for some glib medical advice.
About a year before I was diagnosed with Lyme and it’s counterpart co-infections, I saw a new doctor. He was a DO, and I thought maybe he’d be more open to listening to my vague list of symptoms. Symptoms like low grade fevers, inexplicable aches and pains, debilitating fatigue, and fogginess.
His diagnosis was flippant and his attitude dismissive. He said that I was just getting depressed and that I needed to lose weight. Like, immediately. He didn’t hear me say how I fell ill, and then the weight began to creep on. He didn’t ask me about all the activities I used to be involved in, like hiking, horseback riding, dancing, and even running. He just assumed I was another lazy, depressed, fat chick that didn’t know how to put down a fork.
He gave me a script for some antidepressants (which I promptly tossed out), and urged me to start exercising.
So out of stubbornness, I joined a gym. And I worked hard, despite always feeling worse after every work out. I refused to listen to my body when it was screaming at me to treat it gingerly. Until about a month in, going 3 times a week and doing some light weights and low impact aerobic exercise, I was in the middle of a squat and I felt my back pull.
My gym visits ended before they ever really got started. I was in physical therapy 3 times a week for 2 solid months, with no improvement. I also tried months of chiropractic visits. And to add insult to injury, I was still responsible to pay my monthly dues for an entire year.
That was in 2012. And I still have back problems because of it. Once a month, to once every six weeks, my back decides, “nope, you’re not going anywhere or doing anything today. Park your ass for a few days.”
Maybe if that D.O. just listened… If he just delved a little deeper, asked a few more questions… maybe I wouldn’t be in this situation.
And he still has the bedside manner of a cold, dead, haddock. I went to him recently for a refill on my asthma meds, I updated him on my medical situation, and he completely shrugged it off. I showed him test results and explained what meds I was on, and he still took no interest.
Some people have no business being in health care.
Lesson I will take away: When I begin seeing my own patients, I will follow Doc C’s example, and listen to every little detail a patient shares. I will dig into their history with the tenacity of a pit bull, and I will not dismiss any of their concerns.