Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Pediatrician Rant

I'm going to have a rant for a few minutes so if you aren't in the mood to hear me going off on one, then come back tomorrow and I'll try to be more cheerful.

We have been with our lads pediatrician, Dr. B., for 4.5 years (since just before Jack was born). We chose him because he's young, dynamic and has grown his family along with ours - he has two boys the same age as ours. Along the way I've heard a few negatives about him as far as his experience and some silly things he's come out with, and I've got at least one friend who moved to another doctor because she wasn't satisfied. But we chugged along because we liked him and I wanted to keep the status-quo. And sometimes the grass isn't greener is it.

Not that I haven't been annoyed with him over the years. Firstly, in each exam room there's a big mirror behind the examination table and when he talks to me, he actually talks to his own reflection while he talks to me. Weird I know but I thought it was just his quirk. Then when he found out that Jack was leaving his bedroom to use the toilet at night he told me to lock him in his room with a potty, for his own safety. I just ignored that ridiculous advice. One final annoyance is that every time I call the office, they brush me off with "there's a bug going round" and I feel like I have to fight to get an appointment sometimes.

When Danny was born and spitting up violently, it took at least ten visits and finally me telling them I was convinced he had pyloric stenosis before they sent him for an ultrasound where he was diagnosed with it. When Danny was in the hospital after his operation, Dr. B. called me and spent 1 minute enquiring about Danny and 5 minutes making sure we didn't blame him for not diagnosing it sooner. Craig and I even laughed about it, how he must have been terrified of us suing him or something. I should have left him then, but we persevered.

So we kept going with him - through the silly advice, the mirror consultations and the front office staff being at best dismissive and at worst downright rude. Just recently, Jack also failed a hearing test during a routine check and there's been no follow-up, when he said there would be.

When Jack got HSP at the beginning of October, Dr. B. wasn't in the office that day so I was referred to the hospital by another doctor. When I took Jack in to see him a few days later he got his medical book out and looked up "HSP" as he was giving us a consultation (via the mirror). During the visit, Jack started to complain loudly about tummy ache and actually doubled over on the floor, clutching his stomach and saying "Mummy my tummy hurts!" I bent over and stroked his back and asked if he was okay. Dr. B. continued to stand over Jack, never once spoke to him and told me that kids that have been in hospital have a tendency to make stuff up when they get discharged. I was so shocked at his behavior that I just left and went home, but by the time I got there I was hopping mad and I rang them back and told the front office staff that next time I came in I wanted Jack to be taken seriously. That afternoon, after he vomited blood, Jack was re-admitted to hospital for a few days. This time when Dr. B. called me at the hospital I ignored his phone calls.

As part of the HSP recovery I have to get Jack's urine tested weekly for protein, since kidney failure is a part of the condition. The first week, Craig took him so I didn't have to see Dr. B. The second time I took him, Dr. B was his usual arrogant self. He told me that instead of taking Jack into the office I could just have him pee in a cup (he'd give us some) and drop the pee off for analysis. Great I thought! He then wrote this down on a note, gave it to me and said each week, take the pee to an urgent care facility, give them this note and they'll know what to do. What? The urgent care facilities are MILES away from my house. The doctors office is 5 minutes away - why would I drive miles away? Then on the way out to the car, Jack reminded me that Dr. B. has also omitted to give me any pee cups. I thought, that's it. I'm done with this guy. That was last week.

This afternoon Linda called me at 4pm and said she thought Jack might have an ear infection. I called Dr. B's office and told them I needed to get him in and they said "we're full", not "Sorry but we are full for the rest of the afternoon, here's your nearest urgent care facility - take him there. I hope he's okay!" Just "we're full". I said what should I do?, and she scoffed at me and said "take him to urgent care". Children's urgent care were wonderful. They diagnosed an infection in each ear, prescribed antibiotics and they also took a urine sample to check for protein and most importantly they treated us all with respect.

So I am finally finished with Dr. B. He can kiss my ass. Tomorrow morning I am calling another pediatricians office and switching my boys over to somebody who isn't so egotistical that they have to look at themselves in the mirror when they talk to you. I truly believe this guy likes the fame and fortune being a doctor brings him, but he has no empathy for kids. As long as I live I will see him standing over Jack while my boy was laid at his feet, crippled with pain.

That's it. Rant over.

No comments: