Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Big Decision -- postponing Surgery

I have been coming up to my hip surgery and have become increasingly anxious....First, I am still dealing with the tooth extraction and titanium screw implant in my mouth, 1/2 my tongue feels like sandpaper. And, I am still having troubles with my UTI.

And, most importantly, I am unhappy with my new surgeon, Dr Maloney. Since the first time I met him I have never had a comfortable experience. He was so dismissive and waved away any concern that I had. When I complained of swelling and pain in my knees, after looking at my Xrays, he simply said I was sensitive to pain and sent me to the Pain Management clinic. When I saw them, they said....oh, we should put you on methadone.....(Well that is interesting, because that is a pretty heavy duty long acting pain killer, and it is used to help people get off of heroin). Who the heck is Dr Maloney to judge or even know me. He has only seen me two times and has not even looked at the MRIs of my knees. 

I have been so used to excellent care with my orthos in Vail, that this current experience really drives my anxiety. I lay awake at night blaming myself somehow for how the doctor reacts to me. Of course it must be my fault. Then, I go through periods of anger. Ultimately I am frustrated.

I am tired of the whole doctor experience thing. I have a GP that isn't very helpful. A new ortho, who is very insensitive. Through this process I have realized I have no good medical infrastructure close to home. and, I sorely need that. In my frustration I checked out a book from the library called, "How Doctor's Think". I highly recommend this book for any chronic patient. It helps frame the thought processes of doctors and how those processes can impact the doctor patient experience.

After reading the Introduction I realized I needed to break ranks and cancel my surgery to take care of my fundamental medical issues and develop a proactive medical infrastructure that addresses managing more core issues before I go off fixing my hip.

And, that is what I am doing now. I cannot tell you how much less burdened I feel by making this decision. Before I felt like a cow going off for slaughter. There is no reason why I SHOULD NOT HAVE caring doctors around me that can help me manage my condition....

I encourage anyone out there who is frustrated with their medical care to be proactive, not be afraid of doctor's feelings, and get the care you or your love one deserves.

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