Monday, November 14, 2005

Apparently we are all idiots.......

Today has been my final straw in defending the medical system. It always drove me nuts to hear of others complain about the waiting rooms, a doctor's bad advice or how long it would take to get surgery. I would always chalk things up to doctors are human and make mistakes too or if you had to wait forever, that is at the fault of the government and our social system. Maybe you just happened to have a bad day -who knows, but I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Call it ignorance; call it naivety, but whatever you want to call it, it no longer exists with me. I am now a proud cynic of the medical system and doctors in general.

Kaelen has been to numerous doctor appointments in his young life already. Everytime we go somewhere for something, I feel like a narotic mother putting my child through pointless exercises, however, I am too scared not to do them because that shadow of doubt has been created by the doctor. I know that it is always better to be safer than sorry, especially when it is your precious child involved.

Why is it though, when the parent is convinced that there is something wrong with their child, the doctor always puts it down and never truly listens to the issue at hand?

Case in hand: I am absolutely convinced that Kaelen suffers from reflux. And, I knew right from the start that he likely would have it due to his prematurity. The wonderful, brilliant nursing staff at the SCU at the Rockyview (and that is a true and honest statement) even gave us the heads up on it because of the way that Kaelen would act after being fed. He would puke right after being fed, writh in pain whether it was to burp or pass gas. So, we would ensure to hold him upright for at least 20 minutes after being fed, elevated his crib so he was angled upright while sleeping and honestly - it worked perfectly. At four months, Kaelen developed a very stuffy nose and started refusing to breast feed. One doctor told me it was a sinus infection, another doctor told me that some babies just self ween. At six months, the projectile vomitting became apparent and continues to this day. As does the stuffy nose, restless sleeping, the constant little puke burps that get swallowed again and stinky breath.

Through out all of this time, I have been told that it is normal and our concerns were brushed off. Feeling helpless, I started researching on the internet to read more about reflux and GERD in babies. To my luck, I found this website:

Instaneously I knew that this is what Kaelen has been suffering from. So, I booked yet another doctor appointment. After suggesting that this is maybe what he had, the doctor agreed and sent Kaelen off to get an Upper GI test done on October 20th at the Children's Hospital. The two ladies that were there, that did the test were wonderful. One I was told was a doctor, the other a tech. Almost immediately, when they gave him the barium, they both simultaneously said "Yep, he's got the classic reflux" and proceeded to ask me what happens to cause the projectile puking. I explained and they both confirmed that is exactly what he had and to continue giving him the Zantec and feed him smaller meals.

This now brings us to today. We went back to the original doctor who had ordered this test done for the "official" results and to what we thought, to get a new prescription for the Zantec. To our surprise though, the doctor said that the doctor who analyzed the test claims that everything was normal and there was no evidence of reflux. Being stunned, I ask her how that could be when the two ladies doing the test, said that he did have it and were explaining to me reflux and how it happens by pointing to the screen while Kaelen was refluxing. The doctor then said that she wasn't sure but he definitely did not have reflux.

Now fuming and having the knowledge that I did from reading the website, I proceeded to ask her then why did Kaelen have immediate successful results when we put him on the Zantec? She had to look to Paul for confirmation. We both patiently explained that as soon as Kaelen got his first dose of Zantec, he did not projectile puke (he did it at least once a day) and after three days, his stuffy nose was gone as was the smelly breath. You know what her answer was? Well, then Kaelen definitely has reflux.

Okay, like what the f#@k? You just sat there and told us he didn't, because some doctor who wasn't even at the Upper GI test said that he didn't. But now you are telling me that he does? How can she just change her medical assessment just like that? And, she said, "Hopefully he will grow out of it one day". When I asked her about the constipation that is a side affect from Zantec, I was told that it is not possible. Okay. Well Kaelen has never had problems pooping, but has been since taking Zantec. Sweetheart, if you did your homework, you will find that constipation is a direct result from Zantec in infants.

I am convinced that he has reflux and has had it since day one. I have done my homework and am not a narotic mother. But why can't I just find a doctor who will really listen to what I am saying and say: "Yes, mom. You are right. That is exactly what Kaelen is suffering from." Or, will seek out a second opinion to give Paul and I the reassurance that we need.

So in short, I am beginning to jump on that bandwagon of belief that doctors truly have no clue in diagnosing health issues. They go to school for years to learn the basics, but when it comes to complicated issues, they just pass off mumble jumble in hopes that you don't question their opinion. I am one pissed off mother at the moment - is it obvious?


Megan E. Pratt said...

No Allie, you hide it really well. I would have had no idea you were a pissed off mom. ;)

Auntie C said...

Hmmmm...I think that I have the same doctor as the little man. Feeling a little worried now...:-)

As someone who grew up with this mommy - I can tell you for sure that she hides her anger well - NOT!

Shae-Lynne's grammy said...

I agree, we need to raise awareness so that doctors will diagnose sooner. E-mail me and I will send you some brochures. Help us spread the word! Best wishes, I love your website.