Thursday, October 20, 2011

Dear Doctor...

Dear Dr. [name redacted because I'm not that mean]:

It's been more than a year that you and I have been trying to solve my issues. It's been a long, painful, arduous journey that has effected several aspects of my life. I've done everything you've asked me to. Been to many appointments, tried all the remedies you've required, and even endured surgery, only to be left in pain.

I've felt as though you have not really listened to me when I explained my situation. I know that you blatantly ignored something that I asked you to address, actually telling me that you believed it was "much better now" after you "fixed" it. (I don't believe that for a second.) Many times you acted as though you were grasping at straws, just trying to placate me and expecting me to deal with it since I was just the dumb patient and you were the all powerful doctor. You never really seemed to know what you were doing and more than once caused me pain that I know was unnecessary.

And so, when I decided to seek a second opinion, I didn't think you'd be surprised. After all I have done, with very little relief, why would I continue to see you? I'm pretty sure it was Einstein that said "Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity." Guess what, I'm not insane. (Although I will admit that I do have my crazy moments.)

So I asked my primary care physician for a referral. That very first appointment, without any prompting from me, the new doctor told me what he believed was my problem, which is exactly what I had been saying all along. Do I expect him to be able to fix all that I believe you screwed up? No. But I do expect to be in a lot less pain.

I find it ridiculous that your nurse called me to make me feel bad for seeing another doctor. I have no contract with you, verbal or otherwise, that says I have to continue to go to your office. I had no idea that this other doctor was in your "call group" or that they needed to call you before I had my first appointment. I told them that I had been your patient and, the last time I checked, I'm not his secretary. Yes, it may be awkward to run into you after this, but I'd rather take that slight risk if it means I could no longer be in pain.

If I felt any hesitation before today about seeking a second opinion, it is most definitely gone now. I'm very happy that I trusted my instincts and made a choice that I believe will help me. Could I be wrong? Of course. But I will no longer have to continue seeing a doctor who I do not trust and have lost respect for.

I'm doing what is right for me, and that is all you should be concerned with now.


Amanda, a very unhappy patient

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