Managing the doctors

Managing the doctors

diagnosis and testing, doctors and practitioners
At a certain point in your health investigations you'll discover that the majority of doctors will do the same time-wasting things over and over. This is especially maddening when dealing with a complementary/alternative medicine (CAM) practitioner not covered by insurance. Here is a list of suggestions for getting the most out of a doctor's visit. 1. You're the boss, or maybe the department head I suggest you treat appointments like you're running a business meeting with the head of another department you know nothing about for a project you'll both be working on. You have no reason to be embarrassed by the fact that you don't know a great deal about his subject, and the other person has no reason to be surprised if you do not. You both have…
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The summer of my frozen shoulder *

diagnosis and testing, doctors and practitioners, symptoms and conditions, treatments
In 2014 I stumbled on a staircase, reached out to balance myself against the wall, and was rewarded with a breathtaking pain in my left shoulder that I tried to ignore for a year. For all that time I was unable to raise my hands over my head to wash my hair, but because of the chronic exhaustion that colored my life for a good two decades, the idea of simply arranging a doctor's appointment was overwhelming, never mind a series of physical therapy sessions. By the summer of 2016 I had moved out of my moldy apartment and regained enough mental and physical stamina that I felt I could tackle the issue. I went to the local pride-of-the-town clinic -- globally-recognized, POTUS-praised, and nicknamed "The Machine" by my acupuncturist…
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My year with a concierge doctor

doctors and practitioners
In 2017, I spent $1,400 for a subscription to a concierge doctor, one who charges extra to offer better access for her patients and has far fewer patients than the typical hospital system doctor. Other terms for this type of practice are concierge medicine, boutique medicine, private medicine, retainer medicine, and maybe subscription medicine. The doctor I ended up choosing had 350 patients, which she said is 1/10th of the usual caseload. Doctors in larger and more affluent metro areas might have more patients. Your health insurance is used wherever applicable, but not for the annual fee, obviously.  Long story short, if you can afford it and are not particularly attached to your current doctor, I would recommend a concierge doctor. I found that having one reduced my anxiety about…
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Three months of reiki

doctors and practitioners, treatments
More and more health writers and bloggers, including the Low-Histamine Chef and Donna Jackson Nakazawa, author of The Last Best Cure, have found stress reduction to play a big part in their health recovery, and since my stress tolerance is pretty much in the toilet and getting worse, I decided to go get me some. I needed something reeeeallly passive. Meditation, yoga, and nature walks were too much for me. So were about half the service offerings at my local spa. Infrared sauna, various types of massage, and the flotation tank all require removing my contacts without a sink or mirror, or doffing and donning winter clothes in a tiny space, or showering in a tiny shower. I couldn't deal with any of that. I decided on reiki, which in…
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Annoying crap people will say re: your mystery health issue

doctors and practitioners
After you've spent a few months/years wandering through the medical system with a complaint no one can help you with -- hair loss, psoriasis, fatigue, dizzy spells, insomnia, whatever -- you start to hear the same refrains from supposedly well-meaning doctors and civilians. "Are you sure it's not just depression/stress?" Translation: "America's healthcare system is the best in the world, so I think I'm safe in saying that anyone who thinks a doctor can't solve his particular problem has some sort of mental dysfunction. Besides, I heard it on a commercial for some prescription drug." "You should try my doctor. He's really good." Translation: "You can tell my doctor is good because he's speaks really confidently. He uses medicalese I don't understand, proving that he's completely up to date on…
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Disguising nutritional therapy to defraud patients

doctors and practitioners
An older version of this post appeared on my now-defunct blog, Blessed Depth. At my last job in the big corporate world, I heard a rumor that one of our big cheeses — the one we trusted, the only one who bothered to tell us that yes, the new office in India is indeed the death knell for you all — had "lost" two family members to a cult. Eventually I got to know him well enough to ask him about it and was surprised to hear that it came about during his wife's search for treatment for depression. She had suffered from it all her life and felt horribly guilty, he said, for passing it on to their daughter, now grown. The wife had been seeing a certain doctor…
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