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Thread: Doctor Question

  1. #1
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    Default Doctor Question

    Forgive me for posting in this forum but I simply didn't know where else to ask my question. This is in regards to my mother not myself. She has been ill for a couple of weeks now. Long story short there have been 4 GP visits and 2 ER visits. All testing thus far has come back negative expect for low potassium levels which triggered, they think, an SVT. And that her blood pressure medication is now too strong for her...another long story. Okay to my question. Shouldn't the GP have run the CBC, thyroid and Vitamin Deficiency tests all at one time? Or am I wrong for being so aggravated? I realize they want to take it a step at a time. But this just seems odd to me. My own GP will run the blood panels he needs to and the A1C I always ask for and so has my other Specialists. I don't know, I guess I am just aggravated that she has had to return 4 times now for different blood tests. Oh, and I am not upset with her at all so don't get me wrong. I would take her anywhere she needed to go no matter how many times. But it seems like this is a lackadaisical approach. Am I wrong?
    C3/C4 ACDF - 2004, C5/C6 ACDF - 2006
    L5/S1 - Facet Degeneration
    Lumbar Facet Rhizotomy L4, L5, S1 (left side) 2007
    Retired - DOD/Defense Finance & Acctg/IT - 2005

  2. #2
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    Kathy49 no, IMHO, with the price of gas and our time, plus the fact that 4 sticks hurt more then one, yes i would be aggravated too. If it were me, i would try and have ONE doctor coordinate her care and i would be asking lots of questions - my suspicion is that insurance company's are behind this. I am not saying I am the Obama plan is good, i don't
    know enough about it, I am on Medicaid, but i saw in the paper that under the plan, insurance co. have to spend 80% of the premium on health care for the patient and keep only 20% and have to refund the rest. I wish you and your mother the very best.
    Blessings
    Alex44
    Skypilot
    Last edited by alex44; 07-05-2012 at 10:18 PM.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for responding Alex. :) Okay, the gas and time isn't really a problem since her GP isn't all that far away. But God help the person that is. She is a "hard stick" but she deals with that. But what you said about insurance companies is something I was thinking about yesterday. THAT is what started the debate with her GP and when my fuse was lit! Before I get into that just know she has Medicare A&B and BC/BS Standard under the FEHBP. The same thing I have. Anyway, I asked two questions. One, why weren't these blood tests (other than fasting) ran at one time? And two, why weren't other possibilities discussed at her FIRST visit? He explained the process of elimination which I do understand to a degree. But I asked again why wasn't her thyroid mentioned, why wasn't blood pressure medication mentioned? He got annoyed. Told me that Medicare wouldn't pay for all of these tests at once. I don't know if that is true but I DO know that BC/BS as her secondary will definitely cover anything she needs done. Then he actually said to me, "If you are that worried about it, why don't you take her to your own doctor?" I lit up!!! What in the world do my questions have to do with MY doctors?! It went on and on until I finally just told my mom I would wait for her in the car. Anyway, not sure what is actually going on because I never run into this myself and neither has she. But she did laugh at me in the car...said I was too outspoken but that she understood where I was coming from. She could see both sides in other words. I don't know Alex, something is going on but I just can't pinpoint it. I just wish he would have stated these things in the beginning and then run the labs. By the way, checked his ratings too...not good! Perhaps as my friend told me, she needs an elder care doc.
    C3/C4 ACDF - 2004, C5/C6 ACDF - 2006
    L5/S1 - Facet Degeneration
    Lumbar Facet Rhizotomy L4, L5, S1 (left side) 2007
    Retired - DOD/Defense Finance & Acctg/IT - 2005

  4. #4
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    Kathi, the only way a process of elimination would be effected by doing all the blood work at one time is if he were changing her medication after doing the blood work. I don't get the impression that anything was going to change based on the blood work so yes it should have all been ordered the first time so she only had on stick to deal with. This experience may be why he doesn't have a very good rating and I agree that your mom could benefit from an elder care doctor.
    1979 spinal issues, 1993 lumbar microdisectomy L3-4, 1996 360 3 level lumbar fusion L2-5, 1999 open thoractomy fusion T8-9,
    2002 C3-7 herniations and T4-7 herniations, 2004 total disability, a new limited life

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    Thank you Mark. :) Forgot to say earlier that the 2nd ER visit was when my brother took her. They are the ones that said to "hold" her Losartin (sp?) until she had a chance to talk with her cardio doc. She heard from him yesterday afternoon and yes, her cardio doc wants her to stop it. So, that's the latest. My point being the GP never mentioned any of this...meaning he didn't even suggest or discuss any blood pressure issues/medication could be a problem nor thyroid nor vitamins...no nothing! We were wracking our brains because the ER blood tests weren't showing anything other than low potassium levels which she quickly able to get up. It was more of a "Well it could be a virus so run along home like a good little girl." That kind of attitude. My mom is very astute for 85 and she did ask a lot of questions from the start. But he still kept up with these kinds of comments. Ugh! Anyway, yes Mark, I agree. I thought he should have done these tests from the start. But again, when HE brought up Medicare, it triggered me to think okay, what's going on here? Not generating enough revenues or what? Fear of not being paid? I just didn't understand it! On a lighter note, before we left, I just told him...see ya next week for yet another blood test you haven't done yet! Okay, okay, so I was a smart aleck. But I will fight or rather advocate for her...I just need to watch HOW I say things...oops! Oh, as for those ratings. To be fair there were a couple of good ones. The majority weren't and one even mentioned the same things I discussed above. When the time is right and she is feeling stronger, I hope, I am going to try to talk with her about seeing someone else. That will be tough because she has had a lot of confidence with this guy and still does.
    C3/C4 ACDF - 2004, C5/C6 ACDF - 2006
    L5/S1 - Facet Degeneration
    Lumbar Facet Rhizotomy L4, L5, S1 (left side) 2007
    Retired - DOD/Defense Finance & Acctg/IT - 2005

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    Kathy49 - from your description of things, you are right, she needs a new doc that specializes in elder care. Getting stuck is no fun and it sounds like the doc. is whining "I did'nt get my cut'. I admire your mom for being so stoic, but i used to go to the VA and FIRED five doctors until i got one that would be honest with me. I got my SSI and I ran, not walked to my S/O'S doc at the local medicaid clinic and get SO much better care - i am using this to illustrate a point, sometimes the grass IS greener on the other side of the hill. like changing doctors. I guess I am lucky, as if i have/need a very,very urgent need or question, i can leave a message and if she is on duty, she will call me to see whats up - not a nurse - Her - a great doc i hope i never lose. I truely hope this finds you and your dear mother well - I went through much the same with my DAD (RIP) so i have an idea what you are going through.
    Many blessings and prayers
    Alex44
    Slypilot

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    Thanks Alex, I was thinking yesterday that since my Niece is a PA perhaps she could talk to her. But I want my mom to get stronger first. She seems to be doing a bit better now that she has stopped that one med. But still a tad weak and shaky as she puts it. That's been a problem too...she eats the right things just not enough. But then again I realize older people tend to eat little. So, I bought her Ensure and well, went to the grocery for her. And I completely understand about the VA. My husband just received his VA Disability earlier this year. Off topic a bit, but as you know he had to go through their doctors for several tests. One of them, I had to laugh, diagnosed him with carpal tunnel in both arms by using a cotton swab! Say what??! So, he said to heck with that and went to our Neurologist who did the EMGs. Anyway, he has lit a couple of them up. We were talking yesterday about how these docs are and what went on with my mom. And I told him, as an example of travel, "Can you imagine if I had EVER told a Colonel or a General, that I don't know what's wrong with his travel reimbursement claim?" Oh geesh, I would have been jerked up and my head on a silver platter LOL! I know, I know, I am comparing apples to oranges. But there is no way I could have ever said I don't know. Okay, well I know that medicine doesn't always have an answer but again, things should have been ruled in or out. So, back to the insurance. Medicare Part B will pay up to 80% then BC/BS picks up the rest. And there are no co-pays involved since that is one of the incentives. What I think and I could be wrong is that he wanted to charge for multiple office visits. Or it could simply be that he doesn't want to run what he might think are unnecessary tests. Again, I don't really know. I just felt sorry for her having to be drug around in this intense heat while growing weaker by the day. And I forgot to mention that my entire family was calling me all the time. I am the only one that is really around most of the time since I am retired. But my brother found out fast too and told me he was running into the same thing with her. What I mean is they were quickly getting as aggravated as I was. On a funnier note though, my mom said I have been married to a retired SGM too long since I really used to be shy and quiet LOL! Well, she's right, hubby has taught me to be too outspoken I think. :) But again, I told her, I will fight...just sorry if I caused her anxiety levels to skyrocket. But someone has to speak up.
    C3/C4 ACDF - 2004, C5/C6 ACDF - 2006
    L5/S1 - Facet Degeneration
    Lumbar Facet Rhizotomy L4, L5, S1 (left side) 2007
    Retired - DOD/Defense Finance & Acctg/IT - 2005

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kathi49 View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    Forgive me for posting in this forum but I simply didn't know where else to ask my question. This is in regards to my mother not myself. She has been ill for a couple of weeks now. Long story short there have been 4 GP visits and 2 ER visits. All testing thus far has come back negative expect for low potassium levels which triggered, they think, an SVT. And that her blood pressure medication is now too strong for her...another long story. Okay to my question. Shouldn't the GP have run the CBC, thyroid and Vitamin Deficiency tests all at one time? Or am I wrong for being so aggravated? I realize they want to take it a step at a time. But this just seems odd to me. My own GP will run the blood panels he needs to and the A1C I always ask for and so has my other Specialists. I don't know, I guess I am just aggravated that she has had to return 4 times now for different blood tests. Oh, and I am not upset with her at all so don't get me wrong. I would take her anywhere she needed to go no matter how many times. But it seems like this is a lackadaisical approach. Am I wrong?
    No, you are not wrong. You are caught up in what I call the Medical Mill. The more visits the more money they get. It's very simple. I've been on it for 2 years now. A dozen trips to the ER, 6 hospital stays, dozens of test and no one can still figure out why I have constant nausea and how to fix it.

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    I used to go to a cardiologist quarterly for decades. The routine was that every 3 months he would run a CBC, chem panel, several thyroid tests, digoxin level, and a few others. Now I don't know what the deal is. These are relatively cheap blood tests that any lab can do & the doc should be checking. I don't believe I should have to be the one to tell the doc what to order since I'm not aware of any study showing the IQ of MDs suddenly dropping over the past few years. Yet it seems to be true or else they're under the thumb of the Group Practice or the insurance companies. I certainly do NOT want accountants telling me or my doc what tests s/he should be running.
    Sher
    My Life Menu: CFS probably since birth, full flavored since the 80s, with Fibromyalgia, Major Depression with a side order of Anxiety and Agoraphobia sauce, Restless Leg Syndrome with spicy Other Sleep Disorders, 11 Eye Surgeries, a generous helping of Gut Problems

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    Thanks Barque and Beader. Sorry, I haven't responded sooner but I am dragging today. Barque, I feel for you. I went through the same thing although it was fairly quick to find out what the problem was; good Gastro doc. I am just curious. Have they looked at the bile duct? I ask because my mom had a Pancreatitis attack last year and had her gallbladder removed but the culprit was gall stones stuck in that duct. Anyway, I think you are right about the multiple visits; went through that too with my neck until I FINALLY found the right doc. But it was always...we can't do much more UNTIL I found the doc that would go the extra mile.

    Beader, great post! You summed it up quite well. That is what I was trying to say but you said it better. My mom has a great Cardio doc that specializes in the electrical part of the heart and I loved her surgeon too. But what happened is that the ER and her Cardio nurse both told her to go to the ER. Then the ER said to go to her GP. And that's when we began chasing ourselves. Now, she has been wearing a holter monitor for the last 21 days. It is to be mailed in tomorrow...she's done. But I told her yesterday that she needs to set up an appointment with her Cardio doc and see if perhaps her medication needs to be really stopped or adjusted. Her BP was behaving erratic yesterday but she's better today. Anyway, something sure is going on. I might run into myself pretty soon.
    C3/C4 ACDF - 2004, C5/C6 ACDF - 2006
    L5/S1 - Facet Degeneration
    Lumbar Facet Rhizotomy L4, L5, S1 (left side) 2007
    Retired - DOD/Defense Finance & Acctg/IT - 2005

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