Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Round 2 underway but not without issues

OK first off, I'm officially back at Queens for round 2 of this chemo regiment for the next 4 days. All checked in, PICC installed, juices starting to flow, got the PC card for the laptop and a few DVD's to keep me occupied , but my hope of having as uneventful an experience as last already spoiled and I'm still somewhat in shock at the experience.

As I've had a lot of feedback from many of you, pro and con, regarding the "issues" I have had with my Doctor and his office, I'm sure this will creates some chatter. Let me tell you, everything prior pales in comparison to this morning and I apologize up front as I foresee a lot of this blog being used to hash out this situation during my stay here this time.

So I check in at 10 and breeze through, get my room assignment and make my way upstairs to my home until Saturday. The nice thing about round 2, is I know what to expect and possibly how to expedite the process, so I start making myself at home and while unloading some of my goodies, my Doc walks in. He seems cordial enough, no mention of the new hair style but shakes my hand and asks if I'm ready to get started. I reply the sooner the better as the quicker I'm out. I go on to touch on the topic of the phone tag we played last week and express my hope to get on the same page on this over the next 4 days as he has rounds this time so we can talk. (You might recall I never saw him once on my first visit which I thought was odd)

BAM! His entire demeanor changes and he almost seems to rush me wagging his finger in the air telling me I need to stop screwing around and do what he says and get the port. This takes me completely off guard and I try to respond. He'll have none of it and again accuses me of cancelling the procedure twice prior to last week. and he's had enough. Again I try to get a word in and explain what transpired and he cuts me off and goes right into how he has had to accommodate me for the Super Bowl (he's been hung up on that as we had a joking conversation about not screwing up SB weekend in our first meeting the Friday prior-or at least I thought we were joking, ) a trip to Houston (that second opinion that obviously so irks him) and whatever else is bothering him about me. I'm sitting in a chair with my laptop on my lap and he again comes right up to me, leaning over with the finger wagging and pointing while telling me he is trying to give me the best care possible but I'm screwing with him. however this time he'll administer my treatment using the PICC and continue to give me the best care but "don't piss me off." He backs off but continues by telling me if I don't comply and get the port by next time I would be looking for a new doctor.

"Don't piss me off" and "comply" all while in my face? If I didn't have the laptop I would probably have been on my feet as this could be construed as an out and out threat the way he came at me but fortunately I do not react and do finally get an opening to fire back at this assault.

"Excuse me Doctor? Now you have pissed me off and first of all, I do not appreciate your tone, I am the patient here and are you even aware, or care what happened Wednesday to create this problem? Your nurse, whom I spoke with Monday after our appointment per your instructions, was making an appointment for just this procedure. As she was too busy, as seems to be the case too often, she was going to call me with specifics for Wednesday. It wasn't until 3:30 Wednesday afternoon that I again heard from your office. No one had the courtesy to call me prior to that yet it was on that call I am told that I needed to be here at 7:30 the next morning. I'm sorry Dr, but I do not see that as a cancellation on my part, but an error by your staff. Further, I arranged my schedule accordingly and blocked out Wednesday for this, so therefore no, I could not, nor would not drop everything to now loose my Thursday and quite frankly you can't honestly expect that." He just shook his head and gets all worked up saying "you needed it installed"

I try to pacify the situation and agree that I will need these things and will get them but I don't see the need to restrict my activities and subject myself to these procedures 6 weeks out without knowing exactly what the next step truly is. Further ,to have his staff make schedules on my behalf and not communicate such with me, yet expect I can just jump when they say, is not only inconsiderate of me and my time but as the patient, I would expect some courtesies and respect to be extended by you as to the situation. Instead, you choose to disrespect me by not considering what I am being subjected too, and continually blame me for what are staff issues on your end. Further you choose to not only insult me by that but stress me out with this confrontation before a major chemo treatment? That is unbelievable and I am simply appalled. I refrained from using the terms unprofessional or ethical but was close as that is what this is. He comes back with a comment that it needs to be done as it needs to heal and you will do it when I tell you too.

I start to reply and am cut off again -"Forget it, I'll go ahead and administer this cycle but after we'll be finding you a new Doctor."

He turns and storms out of the room-I have not seen him since.

I am absolutely in shock-I hadn't even noticed my new nurse had come into the room during this confrontation and is against the wall, jaw agape as well. We are both quiet for a moment and I finally ask are you Karen -Yes and what just happened? I wish I knew. Another nurse comes in to take vitals and she just tells her to come back as probably not a good time to take BP-for either of us.

I don't know what to do here-I'm still in shock as you sure as hell don't talk to a patient like that much less one about to undergo what I am. I will be contacting my primary on this as she needs to know but whether to file an ethics type complaint or not I'm just not sure-believe me I've already had some opinions sent my way but I'm just blown away right now. If this was my first round, I'd be so out of here-fortunately, I know what needs to be done and could care less if I see him again.

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