Location: Cheshire, Connecticut, United States

devilishly handsome, screamingly funny, overly modest

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


The subject of tonight's blither is doctors. I currently employ a general practician, an endochronologist, an oncologist, a surgeon, a dermatologist, and a couple of osteo guys. If I could find half an ounce of common sense among them I'd consider myself lucky.

The main problem seems to be in their income level. Like Tevye in "Fiddler" we tend to ascribe wisdom to people who are rich. I can tell you after years as a stock broker that there is absolutely no correlation between wealth and intelligence. Unlike most of the rest of the world, US citizens are willing to shell out obscene amounts of money for medical opinions, no matter how idiotic they are, if the opinionator is an MD. Most physicians have been forced, through specialization, to concentrate on one tiny area of learning to the exclusion of all others, which makes his thinking on any other subject less than mediocre. Nonetheless, because he's paid a lot of money for giving an opinion, any opinion, he's somehow validated even outside his medical field. Even if he starts out as a reasonable guy, it's easy under these social circumstances to slip into a morass of supercillious assininity. Poor them. Poor us . Poor healthcare system.

The narrowness in the view of the American doctor leads him to consider only his aspect of a patient's case, sort of like the three blind men describing an elephant. A great example of this was my endocronologist pontificating his recommendation that I do a lot of walking for exercise. Had he either (1)listened to me or (2) read my charts, he would have discovered a series of operations on my knees, a condition of osteoarthritis that has left me with no cartilage in either one,
and a failed series of knee injections attempting to correct the problem. I had previously told this stellar example of medical education that I was finally going to give in and have two knee replacements. To this the response, less than two weeks later, "I really think it would be a good idea for you to do a lot of walking". Idiotic blither. On the other hand, he seems to know a lot about endocronology.

My oncologist's office has a phone system which makes it virtually impossible to talk to a any human being, much less the doctor himself. When I brought this to his attention, he told me it was "inappropriate" for me to want to communicate with him. Unsurprisingly, the turnover in his admin staff is about three times that of McDonalds.

Believe me , Icould go on endlessly on this subject, but you wouldn't listen. I don't have an MD.


Blogger Brett said...

Don't underestimate your blog worth Bill. You've got a lot of interesting things to say. How dare MDs suggest that they are somehow better than us and it's "inappropriate" to want to communicate with them. This elitist bull needs to stop in the medical field immediately. A good dcotr is a good doctor, regardless of their specialty.

5:30 PM  
Blogger Nile said...

Isn't there just something holier than thou about many drs. offices? It's apparently not as much of a service industry as say...most other things. Grrr.

P.S. We're trying to mount a movement to go out for drinks (hard or soft) after class on 11/10. Spread the word.

6:35 PM  
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