Describe the approach you think is best when it's time to move on to a new doctor. The following are times you should leave. 1) When they don't return your phone calls. 2) When you have to do their office work for them. 4) When they diagnose by just looking at you. 4) When they give diagnostic orders opposite of the what test result are. 5) If they accuse you of behavior you know you're not doing. 6) If they refuse to run a simple blood test.* 7) When they lie to you. 8) If they don't stop when you tell them that what they're doing to you hurts. Yes, these are all personal experiences.
I was told that I was drug seeking... for prednisone (laughable in itself). I was told, "Nobody can be that sick!" by the doctor who has been my family's doctor for generations, and knew me before birth. I was told not to make a follow-up appointment on several occasions, with the line, "I'm sorry, we have nothing left for you..." Which really means, "I'm sorry, we have nothing left we're willing to give you..."
*I had a doctor who refused to run a cortisol test on me. If he had done that, I wouldn't have nearly died from an adrenal crisis. And I would have been diagnosed, and put on treatment 3 years earlier. I would have gone through 3 years less of suffering and struggle. I wouldn't have reached any of my miracle cures sooner, but I would have had to endure less in the meantime. Hell, they probably could have made me functional enough to keep working, but because of the combined arrogance and the War on Drugs (read: War on Patients), I ended up disabled and on government assistance.
However, my caveat to number 6 is, don't just go in there and order blood tests every week. That looks like a villain that doctors are told to ignore: "Googleitis: I read it on the internet, so I must have it." If you think you have something, don't go in there with a print out and say, "I have all these symptoms." Not unless you absolutely know you can trust your doctor to believe you. Instead, if you think you have something, first tell your doctor the story of what your day is like. Describe what going through the symptoms is like and how it impacts you. Then you might say something like: "Now, I was doing some research out of curiosity, and I came across this diagnosis that seemed to match. What do you think?"
I've written number 9 before. It's a tough topic, so I don't mind putting it out there more than once. It helps with my healing. With one doctor (a surgeon, go figure...), they almost needed a pair of pliers, he had driven the needle so far into my skull. He assume I was lying to him when I told him it hurt. He'd aimed wrong. He had a live Xray on (not just a snapshot, but a here's-what-you're-doing-right-now-Xray machine), but he misjudged anyway. The needle was supposed to go along the top of my skull, without touching the very sensitive tissue that lines it. He took that needle and drove it into that tender area, and drove so hard, that they almost needed a pair of pliers to get the needle out of my skull.
This doctor was so arrogant, he didn't believe is own senses! He had to push to drive it in. That's no small matter, putting steel into bone. He managed it. He ignored the resistance he was meeting. He ignored what I was telling him. I screamed so loudly, they heard me 3 floors down. That was also the surgeon, under whose care I didn't receive enough anesthesia, and woke up, post surgery, but still on the operating table. I woke up because my chin was burning. My chin was burning because they had infected me with MRSA. The MRSA that almost killed me multiple times. Unfortunately, he was the surgeon assigned to the study, so I had no other choice.
How do you fire a doctor? Just don't make a follow-up appointment. It's that easy. What's not so easy is explaining to your Primary Care Provider (PCP) why you needed to fire that doctor. In my experience, if you can give your PCP any of the reasons listed above, you'll find your provider will agree, "Run, Forrest, run!!!"
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