Monday, September 12, 2011

View On Doctors Part 2

I hope everyone had a nice weekend. While most of the country spent the weekend in reflection, for me it was time to move. Now all my stuff is in the new house (still in boxes) and my mother and I have the joy of unpacking.

Over the weekend I received a comment on my post "My View On Doctors" that I felt needed a new post to give an appropriate response.

It was mentioned by someone (I'm sure there are more people who feel this way) that they are hesitant to question the transplant doctors for fear of not being listed do to "non-compliance". It is intimidating dealing with a doctor (or team) who ultimately make the decision on whether you get to live or die. That was my fear when I first met my transplant team. I know I can be argumentive, opinionated, and just plain stubborn. I didn't want them telling me that I wasn't a good candidate for a transplant just because we can't agree on how my health should be handled.

If you've read my posts about that initial visit, you know that it did not go well. I tried being nice and "compliant". I wound up in the ER (severe allergic reaction coupled with severe dehydration due to the tests). I had notified them that I had a contrast allergy and that I dehydrate quickly. The doctors said that there was nothing to worry about. That arrangements had been made to keep me from reacting. When I was told what precautions were being taken, I felt that it wasn't enough, but didn't say anything because I didn't want to be non-compliant. That was a big mistake. I was rushed to the ER, they thought I was going to start coding. I was in the hospital for a week before I was stable enough to go home.

So when I encourage you to take the reigns when it comes to your healthcare, I'm encouraging a proactive role in your healthcare. Research your disease, meds, nutrition, exercise and any other treatments. Prepare yourself for a conversation with your doctor. I'm not telling you to undermine your doctor. I'm not telling you to be rude and call him all kinds of profane names. They do deserve respect. But if you feel uncomfortable about something please speak up. You are a key part of your health care team, you know your body better than anyone else.