I got a call around 1pm today from the Appletree Medical Group, the place where I go to see this doctor I like.
“Ma’am, you need to go to an AppleTree medical clinic immediately.”
I wasn’t awake yet,
“Yes, Ma’am. It’s about the results of your imaging studies.”
Oh shit. They gave me the results of my breast imaging studies on the spot, but they didn’t say anything official about my pelvic study.
Listen to the urgency of the caller’s voice, I suddenly flashed back to the ultrasound tech zeroing in on something in my uterus, worried,
but when I asked for further info she shuffled a little and said I had to talk with my doctor. Because I was so nervous about my breast problems that day–and relieved when they said that was okay–I kinda forgot about my pelvic stuff.
“Do I have to go today?” Now I was starting to wake up a little bit. Shit.
“Yes, ma’am. Please check the wait times on our website, and go to the clinic with the least amount of wait time. When you arrive at the clinic, please mention this call at the front desk.”
Okay…this call was starting to sound more and more sucky.
“You’d like to me to go to the clinic today.”
“Anytime before 4pm.”
I’ve been around the block enough in the medical world, to know I do **not** want to go just to any Appletree Medical Group, but I want to go and see my doctor at the clinic where he is working.
Doctors are not all made the same, and due to the complexity of my medical case, there is *no* way I can catch up a new doctor easily–I’ve spent over 4 hours so far talking with Dr Chapman. (He usually spends an hour with me every visit.) We’ve covered a lot of ground (and we haven’t even finished yet).
Especially if it’s bad news, I was in *no* mood to play the getting to know you game with a new doctor. Most doctors don’t impress me, period. If it’s really bad news, then my bullshit tolerance level will be even lower than normal.
I checked the website, and I saw that Dr. Chapman wasn’t working today.
I called Appletree Medical Group back to confirm and yes, Dr. Chapman wasn’t working at any of their clinics today.
It’s a call center, so the woman who answered the second call didn’t know me and I could tell from the tone of her voice she wasn’t the same person I spoke with a few moments ago.
“Um, I got this call a few minutes ago…something about it being urgent I come in today…is it really urgent?”
“Name and birthday please?”
Type type type.
“Do I really have to come in to see a doctor today? Because I’d rather just wait and see Dr. Chapman when he works again on Tuesday.”
“Um….” I could tell the woman on the phone wasn’t totally sure how to answer my question. After a moment of thought, “yes, it can wait until Tuesday.”
“Are you sure it can wait until Tuesday?” The last woman was so adamant I went in immediately, I just wanted to make sure.
“Um, yes, it’s okay until Tuesday.”
She sounded a little more confident the second time.
Ok good. Because unless she was telling me I was about to drop dead on the spot, I was going to wait until Tuesday no matter she said.
Contrary to what these urgent care (and hospitals even) like to believe,
all doctors are *not* the same–they have *huge* variance in talent and expertise (not to mention bedside manner),
and I was now *definitely* in no mood to pick a name out of a hat–especially for bad news, when I’m going to need to come up with a plan.
(And that ‘plan’ could involve getting on the next flight back to Los Angeles, depending on the diagnosis.)
The problem is, almost every time I’ve taken a random name out of a hat over the last ten years,
I haven’t liked the doctor.
Especially if it’s something serious. And even if I have liked the doctor, I’ve learned the hard way it’s *very* difficult to get to know a new doctor–even if you like him–in the midst of a health crisis.
A health crisis is the *worst* time to play the getting to know you game, so if it’s really serious, I’m safer with the doctors I’ve known for ten years.
In the meantime, here in Ottawa, no matter what I do now my experience have taught me it’s better to wait and talk with the doctor who I’ve had at least some time to get to know–even if it’s only been a few weeks, it’s better than starting from scratch…
(New doctors and me don’t mix very well–I’m probably batting at less than 5%. I’m just toooooo much patient for most MDs–they can’t hit the ball 🙂
So I’ll just wait until Tuesday–I’m reeeeeeally hoping it’s just a being problem, like uterine fibroids, but given her tone, and the fact I’ve already been on the verge of so many different gyn cancers I’ve the years, it wouldn’t surprise me if it was some funky cancer too.
Fibroids. Hopefully, it’s just fibroids.
Or non cancerous polyps. I’ll take that diagnosis too…