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Open Minded Doctor, Open Minded Patient

Posted May 21 2010 2:14pm

Because I often talk how wonderful Dr TL is, sometimes people ask me his contact info. I’m just a messenger in between. If the contact becomes his patient, I will not know about it unless the contact tells me.

Since he doesn’t want to give misguided expectation, I was asked to advice the contact that Dr TL will always begin at the beginning and exclude all other possible diagnoses first. This is time consuming but can be fruitful.

I hope I’m not making the contact’s expectation high. What I tell them through this blog is that Dr TL listens to us, open-minded and would try his best to treat us. He cannot give us cure because it is researchers job, not GPs’. He is waiting for cure with us.

He joked I was acting like his agent. LOL. Well, I can assure you that I don’t receive commission, and I’m not advertising about him. As I mentioned before, I will not know if/when you become his patient.

Recently, someone contacted him. She didn’t become his patient because she is too ill to travel to his surgery. I don’t know what they discussed, but I can tell Dr TL has troubled mind about her situation.

He was having difficulty understanding why her local GP cannot help her.

We briefly talked about severe sufferers’ difficulty of visiting GP surgery. I mentioned that some of us need place to lie down while waiting for the appointment, and some people need a transport that they can lie flat.

Transportation can be an issue for most of us. His surgery is an easy 2 minute drive for me. If it is not that easy, I cannot maintain current appointment schedule. He organises hospital transport for me, but I need to come to the surgery to organise it. He informed me that there is transport service that we can organise by phone.

If he cannot examine the patient in person, he cannot find anything or give treatment.

Then, he wondered why we prefer him while any GP would do the same; start from the beginning and exclude all the possible diagnosis. I told him that is not happening. Most doctors don’t give us tests.

He asked me “Why?” I didn’t have the answer. He was disgusted and said “That’s a bad medicine!”

Dr TL remembered he had a patient who came with the diagnosis of ME/CFS. But as soon as he listened to her chest, he diagnosed her with asthma and gave treatment. Her condition improved and she got her life back. She was house bound for 10 years from 25 to 35 and was furious that no doctor checked her lung condition for that period.

Although I couldn’t get rid of ME/CFS diagnosis, lung problem happened to be my other chronic condition. My previous GP didn’t use stethoscope, either. He didn’t send me for blood test.

I hope Dr TL is starting to understand why many of us are so desperate to find a doctor who would treat us…

Dr TL also treats his patient as a person, not a combination of symptoms regardless of what condition/illness we have. That is also making him very special GP.

When we find a doctor like him, I believe patients need to be open-minded as well. It is important to give the doctor chance to prove what he/she is really explaining to us. If we want to be treated as a person, we need to treat them as a person, too.

Good doctor/patient partnership doesn’t happen over night. We both need to have patience, open-mind, respect, and so on. Once the teamwork is happening, the effect of each meeting would be priceless.

And I really hope everyone can have a doctor like Dr TL at their convenient locations. Because it makes a whole lot of difference in our health and our lives.

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