Let's talk GERD **part TWO**

If you read previous post, you know where I am in the treatment process so I'll just start from there.

Almost a year after my first EGD I went back to SK and asked for a referral to a gastroenterologist.  I get a name and phone number (they offered, to call, but I like to set up my own appointments so I can ask questions) and head home to make an appointment.

When I call the place they tell me it will be a four month wait if I want to speak to a doctor, or I can see a PA next week.  Well obviously I'd like to get in as soon as possible and PA's are usually just as knowledgeable and will consult with a doctor if needed, so I set up the appointment.  I'll admit I was nervous/excited about this because I was anticipating a nice PA who would go over my medical history (that is still in a word document, just expanded and includes my lab work and EGD results since SK's office copies them for me for free!) and we would figure out the best solution together.

The night before my appointment I print off my medical history, print off a copy of my food diary (yeah, I know it was a year old, but the same foods still bother me!), and put everything in a nice neat folder.  I realize how anal retentive this all sounds, but I THOUGHT doing this would speed up the process.  Do you see where this is going?  *sigh*

I get to my appointment and wait.  And wait.  And wait.  I understand each patient should be given as much time as they need at each appointment and a doctor can not anticipate that.  BUT, when your drug rep comes strolling out 45 minutes after my appointment SHOULD started shaking hands and cracking jokes I will get suspiciously agitated.  Then when I go back to your office and you have half your sandwich from lunch on your desk and your newest swag from the rep I am slightly put off.  Yes it is important to learn about the latest drugs available.  No it is not necessary to take an extended lunch break to do so when you have a patient waiting.  If it was another patient I could understand, but you blatantly blew me off!  

Actually, I never mind waiting for a doctor, dentist, etc.  I get agitated just because I don't wait well, but if a proper apology is issued, or I see that it was just a case of running late no big deal.  This did not fall into those forgivable categories though.

So I sit down in the PA's office and she starts asking the basic questions.  Why are you here, what are your symptoms, how long have you been having them.  I hand her my file after answering all her questions and explain that I came very prepared and if she would like to look at my latest test results, etc they were right here.  She does take the file from me... and then tosses it aside with her drug rep swag.  Seriously??  She couldn't just GLANCE at it??  Okay, so I'm irritated from waiting, she's obviously not listening and she just completely disregarded my file.  Fine.  

She THEN proceeds to tell me that she'd like me to try Nexium (as she's writing out the prescription), keep a food diary for a month and reschedule for another appointment.  As she starts to get up I grab my file off of her desk (the one I brought) open it and show her that a.) Nexium doesn't work, b.) here is my food diary... for a 3 month time period, and c.) I've already had an EGD that showed ulcers that I'd like to have discussed.  

 She looks at me like she had no idea who I was and why I was there.  Then she was like, "well why don't you go see Dr. T who is a surgeon.  Let's set up an appointment for you."  And she disappeared from the room (I think she may have been running). When she came back, she told me I was supposed to go to Dr. T's office immediately after (it was across the hall) and fill out paperwork.  

What was this paperwork for I finally asked.  Oh, she wants me to have an EGD done to see if there is any damage.  Seriously?  Seriously?!?  I leave because I am upset and frustrated.  I walk across the hall and fill out the paperwork (why?  I have no idea really.  Sometimes when I am that upset I just do what I'm told while my brain shuts down and goes on a quick vacation.)  

Needless to say I never ended up seeing Dr. T for that EGD.  I admitted defeat and figured I would just deal with the problem like I had for the past couple years.  *sulking*  Why was the only person that would listen to me my primary care physician, SK, who couldn't do anything other than refer me to doctors who wouldn't listen to me and prescribe me the medication that at least kept the reflux somewhat at bay??  

I'll end this with a plea to anyone suffering from a medical condition (no matter how big or small) - not all doctors will listen to you.  Sometimes it takes several before you find a good one, but do NOT give up.  Little things can turn into bigger things if left untreated.  As you can see at this point in my story, I am on primary care physician 2 and specialist 1.  Not to spoil the story per say but my surgery on Friday is with specialist number 3.  Some doctors will not listen and some will not have the knowledge to help you.  You need BOTH to come up with a successful treatment plan.

*hugs and kisses*

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