Friday 10 June 2011

Double Standard

You can tell a lot about a consultant using one simple test : when they ask you a question, and you get the answer right, what do they do? The nice ones smile and move on to the next mumbling wreck student. The ones with a god complex keep asking questions until you get one wrong.

If they see you the next day, they're the ones who'll ask you the same question. And you'd better get it right.

My GP has known about my official diagnosis since January (and I first told him what I thought it was - correctly - last summer). He has still (evidently) failed to read anything about it. I just don't understand that mindset. I understand being busy, but to my mind being properly educated about how to manage your patients is not an optional part of the job. If he was supervising me and I suggested a management plan for a patient with a condition I'd never heard of, he'd tell me to go away and read up.

I wouldn't even mind, at this point, if he just said 'you've obviously been reading up about it, tell me what you know'. If he just showed an interest in actually managing things.


He's better than the locum covering for him last week who told me that I would get better by taking ibuprofen, having physio and losing weight.

She nearly stopped my tramadol, which whilst not being hugely effective, is certainly better than paracetamol alone (does she not think I tried that first? no?). She suggested I only take it when the pain is bad (someone's forgotten her basics of pain management). Oh, and then implied that I was lying about the fact that ibuprofen makes me wheezy. I'm not sure what I would gain from that, but whatever floats your conspiracy theory.

She was confident in her proposed 'cure', despite having never heard of my condition, and being unable to even pronounce it.

And then she told me I was depressed. I'm not.

People keep implying or outright saying that my pain is my former mental health problems in a new guise. So much so that the rheumatologist I saw diagnosed with me with depression. I'm not depressed.

The most frustrating thing is that 1) If people think I have a psychological problem, surely they should refer me back to psych services 2) When I was depressed, it took me months to persuade anyone to do anything. Months. They were so desperate not to 'put labels' on anything that I ended up in a complete mess.

I'm sick of the double standards. I'm sick of learning the art of medicine, but being treated by doctors who don't listen, don't care and don't know anything about my condition. I'm sick of not being well enough to work for the NHS because NHS doctors can't get their act together to manage my illness. I'm sick of the bloody NHS, sick of being a medic, sick of being a patient, sick of being too tired to be anything other than a medic and a patient. I'm sick of being treated like a giant pain in the arse, all the time.

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