Doctor’s Limitations

Back in the day, I think patients placed blind faith in their doctors, taking comfort in the belief that most doctors were acting in their best interest. Today, I’m not so sure this level of comfort exists.

The economics of practicing medicine has changed dramatically – from health insurance restrictions to increased medical malpractice premiums, as well as the pressure to “keep up with the Joneses” by acquiring high-tech medical equipment. Bottom line: doctors aren’t making the kind of money they used to. As a result, many are looking to unnecessary surgeries and testing (on their new equipment, of course!), and are even peddling supplements and other moneymakers.

Am I saying that all doctors are bad? Absolutely not! Not by a long shot.

What I am saying is this: don’t sell yourself short. Remember, YOU are your body’s expert, and YOU play an important role in restoring your health.

Regardless of what doctor you’re seeing, he or she may go home to a restful night’s sleep while you’re tossing and turning with discomforting mysterious symptoms. Today’s doctors are more powerful, more specialized, and perhaps more deaf than those of years gone by. Find a medical practitioner who will listen to your symptom picture, and work WITH you in developing a treatment plan. Above all, take an active role and a proactive approach at your next doctor’s visit.


Using the Internet as a Healing Tool

We all know that the Internet is a great resource for shopping and current events, but have you considered using the Internet to research mysterious symptoms or chronic illnesses? If so, then you have crossed ranks and are now a member of the ever-growing population of e-Patients.   There are a number of ways to harness the power of the internet for medical research:

  • Diagnostic Tools – Although it isn’t a good idea to rely exclusively on online tools, they can offer assistance in finding the outlying symptom. For example, identifying a symptom that doesn’t quite synch with the rest of your symptom profile can help with a diagnosis, or rule out certain illness categories.
  • Blog – Writing is therapeutic, and a confidence builder. When you put thoughts into written words, you’ll strengthen communication skills, which will make asking your doctor questions or voicing suggestions and concerns a much easier task. Plus, when you keep a written record of your health journey, you’ll have a road map of your successes as well as of the potholes and bumps in the road.
  • Read, read, read! – (Did I mention that reading is important?) The Internet is filled with articles, blogs and sites with valuable information that may provide a clue to solving your medical mystery. If you’ve recently been diagnosed, learn as much as you can about your ailment as well as what measures you can take to prevent future problems.

With a little patience and diligence, you’ll learn to master what the Internet has to offer and will  be able to use the information you gather as a steppingstone for moving beyond your illness and regaining freedom and control over your life.