Thursday, September 16, 2010
Be your own detective
This is my mantra, ‘be your own detective’. Even if you have a fantastic Dr like I do you have to recognize how limiting a trip o he Dr can be. Usually they give standard 10-15 minute appointments and they see dozens of patients in a day. Just because you are really sick and have been seeing the same Dr for years doesn’t mean you can expect them to remember that a month ago you started taking CoQ10 and you stopped talking the sleeping medication. Of course all this info is right there on the screen in front of them but if you want them to help you then you have to help them!
This illness is a puzzle and chances are you spend way more time thinking about what is wrong with you than your Dr does. I think that if you help them with information then they have the tools to help sort things out, but if you want them to do all the work you will be sick forever. Your choice!
I see my Dr every 2 weeks. I always take a list of questions which are based on research I have done that I think could apply to me. This week it was about coming to the conclusion that I really do have a bad candida problem. I laid out why I thought this was the case and what I though the best approach for me would be. My Dr asked a few questions and agreed with me, he asked more questions and then slightly re-directed my approach. Fantastic result. If I had just gone in and said I feel bloated and blah blah blah he probably wouldn’t have been able to diagnose candida in a 15 minute appointment, but I had had 2 weeks to think about it and try to work it out.
The other thing I always do when I first go in is to quickly refresh his memory about where we are at. This week I said, I had been taking the antibiotics you prescribed 3 weeks ago and this is what happened, blah blah blah. It seems to save a lot of time as opposed to him trying to read back over my chart while I am yapping away at him.
The thing I am planning on doing this week is to lay out all my test results from the last year onto a spread sheet so I can easily see what I have been tested for, what was positive or negative or abnormal. Then I can perhaps see more clearly what other tests I need to get done and also maybe see a pattern of what is going on.
Seems like common sense but for some reason we just tend to leave this stuff in the Dr’s hands and I think it’s a huge mistake … they don’t have the time to put it all together and there is no reason we cant do it ourselves. The internet can give you all the answers if you just bother to have a look.
I have noticed from talking to lots of you and also people on facebook that most people don’t often see a Dr. No wonder most of us never get better!!!
I Know that the big picture is incredibly complex and so getting totally well is unlikely but I also know most of us have multiple infections and sensitivities to things. Surely we can work out why some of these are occurring and fix those specific bits and pieces? That has got to improve things!!
One last thing quickly. Going back to a previous post. My Holter tape results show my heart rate varied between 55 and 200 beats per minutes as a result of POTS. My echocardiogram showed a tiny whole in the mitral valve but nothing to be concerned about. So, regarding the POTS I have a choice of medications I can try but …. I have found something else useful instead. I googled all the medications I was on to see if any of those could be making the POTS worse and what do you know .. one of them was shown to cause a drop in blood pressure when standing. I mentioned this to my Dr and he knew that was the case but had forgotten I was even on that medication because he prescribed it long before I had any POTS issues … See, be your own detective. I have now stopped that medication and the POTS isn’t gone but is significantly improved. YAH!!!!!!!