Thursday, September 25, 2014

My experiment in consulting with a doctor

Even though I am sure you, my readers, think I am an expert user of medical care, I am not.

When they told me I had atrial fibrillation--irregular heartbeat--I went eek, heart trouble, and dutifully took the pills they prescribed in the ER. For nine months I was deathly ill from this medicine and almost died after finally getting hospitalized.

They they put me on a blood thinner--you must have this to prevent a stroke. My dad died of a stroke. So I was on thinners for yrs--monthly tests--got a bad bleed inside, then my retina detached and four operations later could not be reattached because of clots. I quit that on my own.

At the beginning of the summer, I could not breathe. Pneumonia. The ER doc spent about 10 secs with me and said you have pneumonia and probably congestive heart failure. CHF? What? I took the diuretic pills like a good girl.

Every morning for months, I was sweaty, nauseated, dizzy--for hours. I got up six times a night. Awful.

My doctor said my kidney numbers were bad--maybe kidney failure--Stage Three Kidney Disease. He referred me to a kidney specialist.

BUT--I called the place and asked for the office manager. I said I wanted to TALK only. She said, "A consultation?" I said yes. She suggested a doctor in the group who spoke perfect English.

The staff was bossy and nervy and I almost walked, but the doctor was breezy, pleasant, and shrugged off my numbers. She said I did not need the diuretic and certainly not TWO of them. She said come back in three months to repeat the blood tests (the other office, OF COURSE, did not send them all) and to do an ultrasound.

I dropped the heavy duty pill, spaced my BP pills and aspirin through the day, and feel normal!

Don't be afraid to question the system. Talk! See were you stand.

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