Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Meeting The New Doctors, Part One

I have been referred. It was time to meet the new doctors. I was pretty excited. The cardiologist was first. My family doctor gave me a gentle warning that this doc doesn't pull any punches. He tells it like it is. Ok. I'm ready.

Before I go on, I want to be clear. It will sound like the whole visit went south. It didn't. Not at all. This doctor's manner is very different than what I was used to. Keep in mind, I have really only had, or needed, one doctor to this point, he even delivered my kids. I have been very lucky. I'll explain why I have chosen to stay on this cardiologist's roster, even though the question of 'why?' might run through one's mind.

First impression, he's impatient. I can live with that. He asks a question. Don't think about it, just answer it. Well, I guess you're going to have to wait till I get the words out. For me to tell my, albeit, short story. Wow. He's got a lot of questions to ask me--cardiac family history, my cardiac history to date--very lucky on both fronts, there's not much to tell. 

Now my diabetes history, he's got a lot of advice about that...well, I guess he's supposed to know all of this. Aw, he's diabetic too. In terms of my visit, that's a good thing. No. That's a great thing. He gets it. Even told me what my endocrinologist will do, what meds he will prescribe etc. LOL. I'll hold that part of his advice aside. How could you possibly know what my endo will do when I haven't even met him yet?? The endo I will be seeing is his endo as well. OMG! I really don't know what to think. An all seeing, all knowing cardiologist.

He asked me about stress. I briefly told him about the journey with my parents. He had the same journey with his mom. On a personal level, he shared how things will get better for my parents and what the path from here will look like. Wow, didn't see that coming. I really appreciated his thoughts though. 

Time for the treadmill. Paper gown. A million leads. BP 105/60. Nine minutes on treadmill. Yay! No issues. 

Now, his plan. Am I included? It doesn't appear so...I'll explain in a minute. 

The medication review and changes: 
1. Add Aspirin 81 mg, ok, standard practice, cardiac protective
2. Cholesterol med, increase the dose, double what I'm currently taking to get me into the diabetic range...I have a concern, tells me outright he doesn't believe the concern I had with a higher dose of a different statin med--could it happen again is my question, tried to explain my concern, clearly doesn't want to hear it, (here we go again, I'm not only not part of the plan, he doesn't believe me!), added a different cholesterol med instead, I'm still trying to explain, not hearing me. I stop talking. 
3. Add an ACEi. I didn't ask what this med was because I was still trying to process the cholesterol discussion. (More about this later.)

Asked him if I had questions do I go back to family doctor to ask or call him...wrong question to ask..."your family doctor sent you to me because he didn't know what to do"...I almost laughed out loud...no ego there... 

I left feeling uneasy. Sitting in the parking lot, I ruminate. I didn't mind the addition of the aspirin but the cholesterol was a different story. I hadn't been heard. Wait. No. That's wrong. He did hear me. Rather than double the med, me returning in 3 months and tell him I have issues, he just gave me a second med that was not a statin and would do the same job. Well, isn't he a smartie pants. 

I found out after I got home what an ACEi was. A blood pressure med. My BPs have been low since my parents are safe. Hmmm, that one will require the input of both the family doctor and the endocrinologist before I start that one. 

I'll be seeing my new cardiologist again in a year. 

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