The idea of “wellness” being a bad thing is such a strange concept. It’s all about being well – where could the harm be?
The problem comes with how this trend – popularized online primarily – is impacting the relationship we have with our doctors. After years of relying on medical science and seeing life expectancy climb to hitherto unseen heights as a result, suddenly we’re questioning everything.
[photo by congerdesign]
The idea of your doctor being incorrect is a terrifying one. This is a person who, in a very literal way, has your life in their hands. We are all taught to respect and trust doctors, to check things with doctors, to take their word as the law when it comes to health. So if you find yourself in a scenario where you think you have reason to doubt them, it’s terrifying.
Check Your Bias
Say you have a health condition and, like most people in the modern world, that means you have taken control and read up about it online. You have found many people with your condition saying how well The Amazing Pill (as an example!) works, or saw a recommendation on WebMD.com. You go to your doctor and say you would like The Amazing Pill, but they refuse.
It’s at this point you might begin to think that they’re wrong. There’s a goldmine of information online, some of which can only exist by telling you to question your doctor at every turn. Perhaps to even suggest that doctors refuse to prescribe treatments and medications because they can’t get money off “big pharma” for them.
So while you might be right and your doctor is overlooking The Amazing Pill for unacceptable reasons, also try and remember that they know better than you. Just because something works for someone else doesn’t make it a good fit for you; there might be good reasons it’s not beneficial for you.
Always try and check the bias of your position when you suspect your doctor is incorrect. Do you really think they are incorrect? Or is there a part of you just hoping they are, because it will mean you’re one step closer to a cure/treatment/whatever that you have already decided on?
Seek A Second Opinion
[photo by DarkoStojanovic]
If you pass the bias check, then don’t fling yourself at the nearest alternative medicine guru or Trulaw.com in search of recompense. It’s important to remember that honest mistakes happen, or a misdiagnosis is made because of legitimate reasons.
It therefore stands to reason that your next step is to seek a second opinion. And that’s a real second opinion, not one you find at the bottom of “wellness” blogs after a bit of Googling. Go and see an MD who doesn’t know your existing doctor. Don’t tell them it’s a second opinion; just present as if you’re a new patient seeking a diagnosis or a medication – whatever your concern is. Present everything in the same way you did to your original doctor.
If this doctor agrees with the first, then you might need to go back and examine why you thought your original doctor was wrong. There might be a dent in your thinking that you need to solve.
If they do come to a different conclusion, then you can proceed with them as your new doctor. Depending on the severity of the mistake of the first doctor, you have numerous options in front of you. The most important, however, is that you’re now on the right track for the healthcare you need.