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Old 04 March 2015, 06:13 PM
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Twankydillo Twankydillo is offline
 
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Default My doctors don't believe me

In December I went to the doctors with sharp pain on right side, under my ribs.

After several scans they've determined that there are no gallstones but I have a tiny polyp and my gallbladder is 'distended', though I don't know what that means.

I was told to come back in six months for another scan. Six months of daily pain and nausea. I made another appointment to ask if there was nothing I could do, to explain that the pain is there and that I don't feel I can go on like this for six months. I made the appointment after a nasty throbbing started to happen and the pain was joined by another, slightly to the left (possibly where my pancreas is?).

I've just come back from the doctors a second time time and I'm shaking and crying because of how dismissed I felt.

She first got shirty and told me "it's only been a month!" before I could explain myself. This wasn't the same as the first doctor who saw me - so I felt a little defeated that a second opinion wasn't really any better.

She just told me I shouldn't have pain. That I couldn't have pain. It's in my head. Do I take recreational drugs? And so on.

I was shocked and started to cry in frustration. This made her tell me that she wouldn't prescribe me stronger pain killers - that she initially offered. "Because of how you're crying I do not feel I can do this".

Then she wrote down a referral for me but told me I'm wasting my time and nothing will come of it.

I just don't know what to do. I am genuinely worried that I have some weird notes about me, that I'm a druggie or a hypochondriac or something. I had enough fight in me to ask her why I first made the appointment, why I went through the scans (that did find something) if not for the pain? How can it just be in my head if it wakes me up when I'm asleep?

If it's muscle pain even, as she tentatively suggested, is that not worth looking at since I've had it for months every day?

Sorry about this post. I'm just wanting to type to alleviate some of the frustration and hurt I feel. I just don't know what to do but know I can't go back. Nobody will believe me and I don't know why. I just want the pain to stop.

Last edited by Twankydillo; 04 March 2015 at 06:18 PM.
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  #2  
Old 04 March 2015, 06:24 PM
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Psihala Psihala is offline
 
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Is it a pain when you breathe, or a constant pain? I had the former during most of my 20's and every time I went in to see a doctor, no one could find anything physically wrong.

Then I found a doctor that had seen others with the same problem before. It went away years ago, and I don't remember what the specific condition was called, but he explained it by comparing a couple of soft plates that are supposed to slide over one another as we breathe, and they were getting stuck on each other on one side.

~Psihala
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  #3  
Old 04 March 2015, 06:30 PM
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Lainie Lainie is offline
 
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Psihala, was it precordial catch syndrome?

Twankydillo, I have no advice except to seek another opinion if you can. I hope you find relief.
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  #4  
Old 04 March 2015, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psihala View Post
Is it a pain when you breathe, or a constant pain? I had the former during most of my 20's and every time I went in to see a doctor, no one could find anything physically wrong.
It is worse with breathing. Sometimes I can't cycle home because the heavy breathing has an answering stab of pain with each breath. It's just a small area, so could be the gallbladder (and the scan did find something) but I have wondered if perhaps it's something else and the scan results are a red herring. It's worse when I stand up after sitting down and sometimes when I laugh or do any sudden movement like that, which could be muscular except it really doesn't feel like muscle pain and it's not in band, more like a small ball. It is usually a burning achy pain that comes on a wave and sometimes it's a sharp stabbing that lasts a few seconds.
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  #5  
Old 04 March 2015, 06:36 PM
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Psihala Psihala is offline
 
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Quote:
Psihala, was it precordial catch syndrome?
Yes! That was it!

It may not be what is going on here, and I agree wholeheartedly about seeking a second opinion.

~Psihala
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  #6  
Old 04 March 2015, 06:43 PM
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Twankydillo, can you go see another doctor entirely, not connected with these first two?

I would be concerned that the second one might have referred you to somebody who will have similar attitudes.
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  #7  
Old 04 March 2015, 06:59 PM
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Little Pink Pill Little Pink Pill is offline
 
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I'm sorry this is happening to you. Pain is bad enough, having it dismissed is upsetting and unhelpful.

Did you even ask for medication? It would be normal to under the circumstances, but you may need to avoid it the next time you go in. Maybe say you're looking for answers, not pain killers? That may help them to take you seriously.

Are you allowed to ask to see your own chart in the UK?
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Old 04 March 2015, 07:08 PM
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No, I never asked. I just said that I wanted to explain that the pain was still there and I wanted to know what could be causing it, if the polyp wouldn't be, and if there was anything I could do.

After asking what I was taking I said paracetamol but that it didn't really do much good. She then offered stronger painkillers herself, only to take that option away.

She also kept asking "well, what do you want me to do?". I'm not sure if she was trying to goad me into asking for meds but I didn't say anything except "I don't know, I just want to know what options I have". I was tempted to say "I don't know because I'm not a doctor" but I was feeling more defeated than angry at that point.
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Old 04 March 2015, 07:12 PM
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Little Pink Pill Little Pink Pill is offline
 
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Wow. Honestly, she sounds like she behaved unprofessionally, as well as rudely.
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  #10  
Old 04 March 2015, 07:23 PM
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Psihala Psihala is offline
 
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Quote:
It's worse when I stand up after sitting down and sometimes when I laugh or do any sudden movement like that, which could be muscular except it really doesn't feel like muscle pain and it's not in band, more like a small ball.
In my case, it hurt most when I breathed while sitting or lying down. It was always local (rather than in a band), sometimes a dull ache between breaths and often sharp.

Toward the end, I would sometimes feel a small "pop" right below the ribs where the pain was greatest, followed by almost instant relief. Getting it to "pop", though, sometimes took days and usually involved me taking a deep breath - but it didn't always work.

Since we don't know the cause yet, I'm not advocating trying the above, it just sounded so familiar that I thought I'd mention my experience.

~Psihala
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  #11  
Old 04 March 2015, 07:30 PM
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Seaboe Muffinchucker Seaboe Muffinchucker is offline
 
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Twankydillo, can you find out if there is a medical advocate nearby? This would be someone you can explain the issue to who is good at communicating with the medical professions, and who knows what services are available.

You need to find a doctor who believes you, and believes IN you. Being told you shouldn't have pain and therefore she won't do anything about it (not even investigate) means she is a bad doctor and not deserving of your time.

Seaboe
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  #12  
Old 05 March 2015, 02:17 PM
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I agree with what others have said, T. You need to fire this doctor. In the mean time though, you may want to go with this referral, because you may not have to wait as long for an appointment if they see you have been referred.

BTW, Is this referral a specialist, or just a pain management doctor?

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  #13  
Old 05 March 2015, 05:32 PM
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"I know I shouldn't have pain, that's why I'm here!"

I've gotten the medical brush off myself when I was told that I was too young to have heart problems you have my sympathy and hopes for a better experience next time.
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  #14  
Old 05 March 2015, 06:08 PM
overyonder overyonder is offline
 
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I do not know if the UK's NHS transfers patient files & data between different doctors (I have a hunch that they do), but I would still recommend that you see a new doctor.

(I'm sure that some will disagree with my views below, but these are just that, "my views"

When you see that new doctor, do your best to be objective and tell your doctor where it hurts, and do your best to not become emotional. Use words like "It hurts here when I do xyz", or "I feel more pain when I do abc". Try to avoid words like "I feel like it's coming from under my abcdef".

Generally speaking, doctors tend to be concerned more about psych issues when the patient is emotional instead of being factual.

OY
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  #15  
Old 05 March 2015, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Pink Pill View Post
Wow. Honestly, she sounds like she behaved unprofessionally, as well as rudely.
In other words, unfortunately, she behaved like 90% of the doctors I have seen in my life.
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  #16  
Old 06 March 2015, 06:57 AM
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I'm sorry. It's incredibly hurtful when doctors treat you that way, especially when you're already in pain and worried about your health.

I had to deal with a doctor being rude and dismissive when I came in with a lump under my arm. He pinched the spot, hard, and when I cried out in pain, said something like, "it wouldn't hurt if it was cancer. You just have extra breast tissue growing there. Get over it." And then marched out of the office. I'd never seen him before, and he spent all of about 30 seconds with me. I'm not worried about the lump anymore, but I don't know if I'll ever get over that.
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  #17  
Old 06 March 2015, 08:51 AM
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Twankydillo Twankydillo is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overyonder View Post

When you see that new doctor, do your best to be objective and tell your doctor where it hurts, and do your best to not become emotional. Use words like "It hurts here when I do xyz", or "I feel more pain when I do abc". Try to avoid words like "I feel like it's coming from under my abcdef".

Generally speaking, doctors tend to be concerned more about psych issues when the patient is emotional instead of being factual.

OY
I'll bear this in mind. I'm trying to recall what kind of language I've used previously and I don't remember saying anything like "I feel like it is [blah]" but I could have unthinkingly.

How would I say "I do not think it is muscular" if that is brought up again without it being emotional language? I don't know how to say that one because what it is is for the doctor to decide, isn't it? I want to be able to say something on the lines of "if it is muscular, it's unusual for me because of the localised pain, the burning and stabbing pains and that it's been daily for nearly 3 months." I don't want to sound like I think, which is that they're dismissing it as a mild thing I've had many times before and know the difference from.
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Old 06 March 2015, 02:34 PM
RichardM RichardM is offline
 
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Pain is something doctors have a hard time diagnosing. We get asked to describe our pains on a 1 to 10 basis, yet that is very subjective. I don't know what a 10 pain is or at least I don't think I do. I have had stiches put in without any painkillers. I have not taken proscribed narcotics for my last 2 shoulder surgeries. I once broke my knee cap and then walked on it for 2 years. This causes problems such as when I had another rotator cuff tear only this time in my left shoulder. The doctor tested me and told me I had good strength in the shoulder since I could push up against him without it hurting too bad. I told him it felt just like the right shoulder started out feeling before he had to operate twice on it. So he agreed to an MRI. That showed I did indeed have a tear but that it was only a partial tear and rehab should let it heal. Without that MRI, I probably would have kept abusing the shoulder until it needed surgery.

This is a long winded way of saying hang in there and try to figure out exactly what movements cause the pain, what time of day it occurs, etc. Write this down so you can keep it clear in your discussions with the doctor.

Also when a doctor asks what you want them to do about a pain, don't tell them you want them to make the pain go away, tell them you want them to make whatever is causing the pain to go away.
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  #19  
Old 06 March 2015, 03:17 PM
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Seaboe Muffinchucker Seaboe Muffinchucker is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twankydillo View Post
How would I say "I do not think it is muscular" if that is brought up again without it being emotional language?
"I do not think it is muscular," then follow up with why: "because it does not hurt when I do this" or "because I've had a pulled muscle before, and this is not the same pain."

Seaboe
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  #20  
Old 06 March 2015, 10:14 PM
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Also, in my experience, muscular pain often benefits from physiotherapy, or even simple exercises and stretches that GPs can recommend. "I am going to ignore this problem and not give you any suggestions on how to improve it" is not the natural conclusion from "I think you have muscular pain". A better approach would be something like "go and try this (do these exercise/see a physio) and come back in a couple of weeks and let me know how you got on - we can work out then what to do next"
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