Has anyone here ever been kicked out of a Doctor's practice for non compliance by refusing a statin drug?
I got a phone call today from the nurse at my doctor's office telling me that my lab appointment for tomorrow has been changed to a fasting appointment. The GP has ordered a diabetic labs including A1C and fasting cholesterol.
I asked why the cholesterol test when I am intolerant of statin drugs because of some side effects? The nurse reminded me of the fact that my LDL level was out of control and my A1C at 6.1 wasn't very good either.
She then insuinuated that when a patient's levels are out of control that it makes the doctor and the practice look bad. I was told that 'they' (whomever they are) are putting the pressure on the doctor for all patients, especially diabetic patients, to be under control, and perhaps if I wasn't under control that I would be kicked out of the practice.
So.......now in addition to worrying about managing my diabetes, blood pressure and cholesterol - I have to worry whether I will be kicked out of the doctor's practice too? I thought this was America, where we have freedom to choose what medicine we want to take? :(
Zoe - At this point I just want to "get it over with" as my courage is ebbing rather quickly. I feel like the doctor has 'thrown me under the bus.' I wish desperately that I had your courage.
Understood, Mayumi; it's a difficult situation. I think it's a hard balance between being respectful (or at least polite) and getting your needs met sometimes. Some doctors just need to "have their say" and we all have learned the "smile and nod" routine which works well if you don't like confrontation (or know it's futile). I don't necessarily say things like I wrote above, ("You work for me, Doc, so take that!") but I do keep them in mind. And if a doctor fails to have compassion or understanding for your particular issues (like not being tolerant of statins) then he is not a good doctor for you.
But sometimes it can help to let them know you've heard them, ("I know my cholesterol is too high, doctor") and ask for what you need, "But I really can't tolerate the statins, because...can you help me find a different solution?" For many doctors, they have a strong desire to help, to feel useful, and so if you can let them do that but redirect them to a different option, it might work for you both.
Ultimately you choose what you ram down your throat. One option is to accept the Rx and somehow forget to fill it. Don't discuss it unless you feel assertive enough to prevail. The best option is to tell him that you aren't going to take them because of what you consider to be valid concerns. As in any health matter, you have the final veto vote. If he is a good Doctor he will support your decision. But it's a failed relationship if he then turns around and commands you to take them. Best wishes with this one because being under this kind of pressure is not something that you need.
It also pays, sometimes, to pick your battles. I have a PCP I don't rely on for much, but I need a doctor in this small town I live in so I don't have to drive an hour over the mountain for care. Recently I mentioned my nighttime foot and leg cramps. He said "sounds like you have restless leg syndrome". I then said, "Isn't that when you feel like pins and needles and can't sit still? I don't have that." He still said, "I think you have restless leg syndrome, I can prescribe you requip. I took the prescription which of course I didn't fill, because he obviously couldn't admit he was wrong.
Another time he had his nurse call me and ask me to come into the lab to get an A1C. I'd already used the second of the home box kit I had and told him the results. I wasn't about to pay for a lab test to make him happy. I left the blurb from the box which says its reliability rating at the front desk with my results written on it. She didn't call again. Recently I noticed my pain meds which always had 3 refills, had none. I just called the office and they said to have the pharmacy call them and ask to ok refills. I wasn't going to pay my $20 copay for an unnecessary office visit. One more example: He suggested kidney protection meds. I said, "no thanks, I take enough meds for things I already have". He nodded. I went home and researched it and told him I changed my mind.
He tries/I either agree, push back, or appear to agree. Like I said, I pick my battles. I'll keep at this unless I decide I need a better doctor in which case I'll drive over the damn mountain. He's probably got enough records on me that he'd see me in an urgent situation where I wasn't into mountain driving.
It can be like a chess game. Then of course you always can take your chess board and go home (or to another table).
I agree that what you have is NOT restless legs (I'm an expert, I've had RLS since childhood, and it's genetic in my family). RLS causes an unbearable feeling of ants crawling in your bones and muscles, and can only be relieved by moving -- I've spent hours pacing around my house!
On the other hand, if you're having cramps, there ARE things you can do about it. If you were lucky, you'd have a doc who would test you for magnesium, potassium or other electrolyte deficiencies. In my case, taking magnesium has helped immensely, but that's ME, and may not apply to you. Try researching what might help -- I know you're smart enough to be a cautious consumer.
Good luck mi amiga! :-)
My husband also has restless legs. The Blood Bank where he donates regularly told him at one appointment that he had low iron was was not acceptable as a donor at that time. He went to the doctor, had a blood test and it showed very low iron. Took iron supplements for 3 months, was retested and he was fine.
We actually had to buy separate beds as his RLS gets so bothersome at times that he has kicked me in his sleep and left large bruises on my legs. I am not an authority, just sharing what worked for my hubby.
Interestingly enough, low iron in the brain has been shown to be one of the causes of RLS. It's not known whether iron supplementation helps, because they're not sure of how iron is transported into the brain, but if hubby has low blood iron, then I hope the doc started him on supplements. I'd be curious if it helps the RLS!
Hubby was started on iron supplements for 3 months and then retested by both the doctor's office and the blood bank. His levels were back to normal so he was given permission to stop the iron supplements. Sadly enough the iron supplementation did not lessen his RLS that much.
I just noticed this reply; thanks Natalie! I do take potassium. When I posted about the cramps before someone suggested magnesium but it doesn't seem to help. They've actually all but stopped, so I'm not worrying about it. If they start up again I'll try the magnesium again or request the tests. He is able to write lab slips!
Arrrgh! The doctor "wants to speak with you" is worse than being summoned to the principal's office. Of course, an appointment results in cash in pocket.
Jeez, I agree with everybody else! If the nurse gives me results, particularly w/ diabetes, I'm going to take the numbers and look up what it means myself. If the doc is so hot to trot, why is he waiting until January, at least a couple of weeks away, before making whatever recommendation he has. When I ran into my heart thing, I went along with the tests b/c I was curious about the results but I also went to the library and got a couple of books to read about cardiac issues in general so I wouldn't be going in blind. There's probably lots of stuff online but, given that it was something I didn't have any familiarity with, I figured a book would be handy so I read a couple.
It may not be the doc throwing you under the bus though, depending on the clinical environment, I think that a lot of docs, despite their geniusy docishness, are really "run" by their administrators, given flow charts for medical situations and directed to adhere to them.
But why this change in attitude on the GPs part all of a sudden? She has known of my cholesterol issue since before September 2012 and said nothing beyond "you need to watch your cholesterol". But now I'm being summoned??