Monday, August 6, 2007

Powerless

I hate this dance, this negotiating between doctors to try to get to see one earlier than five weeks from now. The players: my GP who is out on vacation till tomorrow, so this is really her office, my OB who is smart and quick, and concerned, and the endocrinologist my OB wants me to see. But OB's nurse could only get me listed for September 19th when she tried last week. So I am trying now. Got a hold of the endocrinologist's secretary, had my doctor's office fax over all thyroid tests since April. The secretary calls back to say that the doctor doesn't think I need to be seen before September because my thyroid is normal now. Get this, normal! No, it's not, I say. Look at T3. He was looking at TSH, she says. Yes, I say, but look at T3-- that indicates a problem (one my OB spotted at once, which is why he wanted me to see this clown in the first place). Can you have your referring doctor write an email? I will try.

This is exactly what I hate-- being more with it than medical professionals who are paid big bucks to be with it; needing to explain to said medical professional what they are seeing on the blood tests, which is their job to read; getting upset because said medical professionals can't be bothered to look at three numbers instead of their usual one, even after being told what the diagnosis is, the diagnosis that necessitates looking at three numbers because the one? It changes slower than the other two. It's called a leading indicator. Look it up in the dictionary, moron.

My OB's nurse just called me back and got an ear-full. In the end, I asked her to have Dr.B tell me exactly what he was hoping the endocrinologist would do for me. Because I don't think this one is going to be a good fit. My GP can probably refer me to someone else, or to no one at all, depending on what it is my OB wants. If it's just waiting till I am no longer hyper to conceive, I can do that. If it's something fancier than that, he is going to have to be clear on that. Because it turns out I can't deal with idiots anymore, even if they are well-respected doctors.

12 comments:

Beruriah said...

Yeah that's certainly not an encouraging start with the endocrinologist. I always feel like this kind of treatment suggests somehow that I enjoy all the poking and prodding and waiting room time. Really? Why would you, or actually, the other MD bother if there weren't something wrong? I hope all your time on the phone got you somewhere this afternoon, certainly in for an appointment before Sept. 19.

Julia said...

I got nowhere today. My OB or his nurse will call me back tomorrow to let me know what he would like. My GP is also coming back from vacation tomorrow, so I will try to go there and get another blood test, and depending on what my OB wants, I may just ask my GP to refer me to an endocrinologist she trusts. Can't be worse than this clown, can it?

Beruriah said...

Well that sucks. I hope they act fast tomorrow.

Whether the new doc can be worse - uh, no? I hope.

kimca01 said...

Oh good lord, I have the same problem - only mine is with the fact that my T4 is non-existant. I could barely get out of bed for months because of doctors just reading the TSH. Now I take dessicated thyroid and my specialist asked me if I was worried about Mad Cow's Disease... when it's from PIGS thyroid. Don't even get me started! LOL You have to be forceful with these idiots and take matters into your own hands!

delphi said...

How irritating! And how bloody common! At least in Canada, I can usually chalk it up to the fact that our doctors are overworked and our healthcare system is bulging at the seams (though I would never give up public healthcare). Here, you HAVE to be your own advocate and expect to have to explain results to your doctors. Am I some how implying that any of this is acceptable? NO WAY!!!! It's certainly not! What I am saying is that it is even less understandable when the health care professionals you are discussing are working in a private system.

Pardon the over use of exclaimatory statements, but the whole thing you have described here really bugs me!

Beruriah said...

Don't forget to let us know what happened!

Phantom Scribbler said...

Oh, for pity's sake! I agree, there's no point in even trying with a doctor who's not listening (or reading the frickin' chart!)

Too bad our endocrine guy is only pediatric -- I'd recommend him in a moment.

niobe said...

Very reassuring. Not.

I hope you can find someone who at least is able to meet the threshhold requirement of competence. But I can't say that I'm optimistic. Most doctors, I've found, aren't really paying attention most of the time.

Lori said...

Is this just a regular ol' endo., or is he a reproductive endocrinologist? I'm just not clear on that piece.

Sounds horribly frustrating, and inexcusable!!

meg said...

Yeah, I can feel the frustration. I don't know what is up with these specialists--they just make me want to rip my hair out at times. I hope it all gets sorted soon!

Aurelia said...

Once they know why you need to be seen, try calling the office and asking to be put on the cancellation list. Let them know you live nearby and are at home so you can come in at any time. (Even if it's BS and you'll be scrambling.)

Summer sucks, completely. Vacations seem to suck so much time out of everyone's schedules.

As for the T3, I'm going to be cynical and say they'll just tell you to wait til it goes down. That's what they did to me when I showed up with a normal TSH and abnormal T3 and/or T4.

After all the idiotic endocrinologists I've seen lately, I just don't believe anyone in that specialty is capable of diagnosing anything that isn't classic. They just seem useless to me.

thrice said...

Sucks, just sucks. I'm having trouble with idiots that are well respected doctors too.