Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Yo Dude, I'm a P-E-R-S-O-N.....Or Dude, Learn From The Good Dr. How To Actually Be A Good Dr.

So I went to my Endo Dr. J this morning.... But my labs did not.
The lab was called, the paperwork was found and faxed to the office 10 minutes later.

Next I was weighed -I’d lost 4 pounds.
My blood was tested. It was 107 - I’d had breakfast just an hour and a half earlier so I was pleased.

Then I was led to the exam room, where I was left to my own devices.

OK, I was dying to go through the cabinets and drawers – I didn’t of course, but who could blame me if I did? I was bored and nervous and needed something to occupy my time. There were no magazines and I’d already written my list of questions for Dr J.

So I waited.

And waited.

And waited.

I was nervous and I started to pace.


Finally, the Attending Intern (that's what you call the student Dr. in training right?) walked in and introduced himself, and quickly started to ask questions.

Right away, I could tell he hadn’t look at my chart.

And how did I know this? Elementary my dear Diabetesaliciousness reader.

  1. Dr. Dude asked me how long I'd been a diabetic and if I was a type 1 or a type 2.
  2. Dr. Dude didn’t know what meds I was taking.
  3. When I told him I was only taking a short acting insulin; he did quite “get it.”
  4. A.K.A. –Dr. Dude had no ideal I was on the pump, & between u & me, I don't think he actually knew how one worked.
  5. Finally, Dr. Dude asked me if my family had a history of diabetes - In my head I thought,"Your kidding right?" This was the final huge tip off that told me he neglected to read my chart.

If he had read the chart, Dr. Dude would not only have known the answers to all of the questions above, but he would have total realized what medical oddities my family & I are.
"HELLO," half of my immediate family are Type 1's, not to mention a boatload of Aunts, cousins, and a nephew!

Had Dr. Dude read my chart, he probably could have written a kick-ass paper about us and maybe even be quoted in some medical journal. He could have been considered a Rock Star among his peers, and maybe even picked up a few babes in the process. But, in his eagerness to learn and impress my Endo, Dr. Dude had dropped the ball by neglecting the simple (my medical chart,) and became just another nameless Attending Intern.

Look, D2 was a really nice guy and someday he will be a good Doctor.

, Dr. Dude needed to work on dealing with the patient as an individual. Not as a number, or some medical chart that he needed to update quickly before the real fun could begin.
Not only was I a person who had a medical issue, but I was a person who "had issues" with her medical issue. Are you following me?

I told Dr. Dude what concerns I had about my diabetes .
And to his credit, he took copious notes and was extremely polite.

He then excused himself & went off to talk with my Endo.


A few minutes later my Endo came in - followed by D2, who was looking very serious.

Dr. J gave me a big hello and wanted to know how I was doing.
Instantly I was put at ease and I hoped that D2 was paying attention.

My Endo Dr. J is awesome! He was so on was on point and not just about my numbers, but on all issues related to Kelly K and her diabetes. He knew my concerns. He remembered my family history, my fears and all the idiosyncrasies that are part of the wonderfulness of being me.

Dr. J was genuinely happy with my numbers, and wanted to know what I'd been doing to have my A1C drop to 7 from 7.6.

He also wanted to know how I was able to drop cholesterol by 24 points, now it was well below normal. FYI - On my last visit and for the first time EVER, my cholesterol had been high by about 12 points, and it freaked me out. So I made a few changes.

To be honest, those changes were simple – I just ate more legumes; whole grains, fruits,veggies, and fish, while eating less meat. I also upped my fiber, can you say WHOLE GRAINS? It worked for me and I was both relieved and glad.

Dr J also fine tuned my Altace by 5mgs and gave me a boatload of insulin samples. YES! That man knew how to make a girl happy!

When I asked him about any upcoming studies that I might be eligible to get in, he told me that my A1C was to low to be eligible for any upcoming studies– which was a good thing.

My Endo, while being incredibly book smart, is just as incredibly people smart.
He can talk me down off my "diabetes ledge of what ifs," update me on all the latest and greatest, and never treats me like a bad diabetic.

We talked a bit more and set some goals for my next visit.

Dr J didn’t want to see me until the summer and I left feeling happy.

I was a person (one who felt happy and healthy, knock on wood,) who happened to be a patient, and that’s just how my Dr. treated me.


Unknown said...

Yay! It's definitely the best feeling when you find a doctor who just gets it. It's also super-helpful for me because I'm trying to get back on track. I've never had an un-awkward interaction with a med student, but it's like you said, I can tell when they'll make good doctors once they can fine-tune how to see a patient.

Unknown said...

It's always nice when you have a good relationship with your doctor and he \ she shows genuine interest in your well being. Congrats on a good checkup

Anonymous said...

LOL @ Dr. Dude.
I am ALWAYS frustrated by the Dr. Dudes in Dr. J's office.
I love that they are learning but I just want to scream "READ THE CHART MAN!”

And to kill the time while waiting (instead of digging through the drawers which is very tempting) the Hubby and I take bets on what my A1C will be…He likes to say “If your A1C isn’t below ____ then you have to make dinner” LOL

k2 said...

Hannah -
Getting back on track is constant in life, as well as diabetes.Glad to hear your taking that journey.

Chris -
Your right it is nice to have that relationship with my Endo. Thanks for the congrats.

Stacy -
"Read the chart Dude!" should be a war cry for all of us dealing with attending interns!

Kelly K

Scott K. Johnson said...

Sounds like Dr. Dude was more like Dr. BOOB!! What a turd.

Your REAL endo sounds like a real winner though, and that is very good. Hard to find them you know!

k2 said...

Now, now Scott, Dr. Dude was not a boob (well maybe he was,) but he was definitely no turd.

I think he was just so eager to learn and impress, that he didn't take the time to examine the obvious, which was right in his hands, my chart.

Yes, my Endo is really wonderful - I'm lucky and I know it.

It took me a while to find one I clicked with.

Before him, I'd gone through a few, and actually found one that was great, Dr Ebstien.
However, he was so great that Philadelphia Medical College built him a building to study bone issues. I was crushed.

However, Dr E told me that I really click with Dr.J and that he was one of the best Endo's in the country.

Begrudgingly I made appt.

That was at least 8 yrs ago and I couldn't be happier.

Dr J works with a great Diabetes Educator Cheryl, who taught, and continues to teach me so much.

I have great diabetes "entourage" & I know it!

Kelly K

Windy said...

You're a great storyteller! I felt like I was in the office with you watching the Dr. Dude and Dr. J drama unfold. hee hee. Glad Dr. J hooked you up! Hope Dr. Dude takes notes on the PEOPLE relating part! That is so equally important to book smarts if you ask me!

k2 said...

Windy -

Glad u like the story and thanks for the great compliment!

Your right about the relating to people aspect, it is just as important.
Dr J is one smart cookie and relates to all of his patients, and I 'v talked to quite a few of them.

Now....if we could just get Dr. Dude and his posse to loosen up, my Dr's visits would be so much less stressful !