Frustration with doctors

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Zapper
Regular Contributor
Posts: 231
Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2016 10:28 am

Frustration with doctors

Postby Zapper » Wed Apr 03, 2019 12:14 pm

Hi everyone,
It has been a LONG time since I have been active here (which is a good thing). I am coming up on my 2 year cdiff free from FMT in May!

Anyway, I came here to vent.. but also to let others know it is OK to question doctors on treatment plans. I have had a few illnesses in the past 2 years which most doctors wanted to prescribe unnecessary abx for... all of them I was able to handle without abx intervention. The last one scared me though.

I got an ingrown toenail from hell. It was awful, and bleeding. I have never experienced something like this.. I just woke up in pain. So anyway, I went to 3 doctors and all they wanted to do was prescribe abx, CIPRO specifically, before even removing the nail (CIPRO is what started my cdiff nightmare). I was distraught- all of them were not understanding- there is no need for abx for ONE day of pain. There were ZERO signs of infection. I found a doctor that was willing to remove that portion of the nail in office that day. So i ran over and got it handled- now I have a referral to a podiatrist to "kill the matrix" or whatever terminology they used.

Anyway, It is hard having other MDs understand the severity of cdiff and the anxiety that comes along with fear of infection again. I have encountered so many that basically refuse to take the time to think of alternative methods (mainly Urgent care and ER). The best thing you can do is be your own patient advocate and fight for yourself. Obviously there are going to be illnesses and issues where you may have to take abx as the benefit outweighs the risk. However, if you KNOW you do not need them- do not be afraid to say no!

I still can't believe after knowing someones case history, they still think prescribing what gave you cdiff would be a good idea! Sheesh!
I feel like some of us know more than the doctors at times!

NanciT
Long Time Contributor
Posts: 2780
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2014 12:01 pm

Re: Frustration with doctors

Postby NanciT » Wed Apr 03, 2019 1:07 pm

Unfortunately not only do physicians believe CDIFF is antibiotic induced diarrhea that is easily treated, but I know many nurses who feel the same. Unless they have actually had it, it's impossible to know how difficult it can be. Yes, there are plenty of patients who are treated once and do well...the fortunate ones. But I also know there are also those like myself who become sick for a long time with several relapses.

I still run into the GI at the hospital who told me " you may never recover". I think I was his first difficult CDIFF case, I hope he learned something.
The best we can do is educate, review our history and explain the reasons. I know the frustration, because I am in healthcare I think the doctors I have seen do hear me, the one's who know me personally and how ill I was have changed their views on CDIFF.

It does cause frustration but for years they write an RX and patients did not ask questions.

Continue to explain your case and also always ask for a culture and sensitivities if there is ANY infection. Then you will get a list of antibioitcs that will work for that specific infection.

NanciT

beth22
Long Time Contributor
Posts: 10194
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 2:23 pm

Re: Frustration with doctors

Postby beth22 » Wed Apr 03, 2019 2:37 pm

I just had a close encounter myself. I got a horrible upper respiratory infection. It started out with a sore throat that felt as if I were swallowing glass. So after 3 days I went to urgent care and they did a flu swab and a rapid strep test. About 20 minutes later they told me the flu swab was negative, but the strep was positive. I asked if it could be a false positive and they said they were sending a culture out to the lab just to be safe, but that I should start a Z pak right away. I explained about my history with c diff, but it didn't seem to matter.

Then the minute I got home, the urgent care was on the phone telling me that if the strep test sat out for too long (more than 5 minutes) it could indeed be a false positive and that I should return to the urgent care and be re-tested (no charge). So, back I went and the second test was negative, as was the culture that came back from Quest a few days later. Glad I did not start the antibiotic.

The next phase of this respiratory illness had me with the most horrendous postnasal purulent mucus that I have ever seen, but no fever. I informed my doctor and he wanted me to start antibiotics right away. So, I e-mailed my endocrinologist, who is also an internist, and he said to hold off. Hold off I did, but it kept getting worse and worse and I went to ER. That doctor gave me an RX for Ceclor and wanted me to take prednisone for the inflammation. I was about to start and decided to give it one more day - by this time it had been over a week and next day things started to improve. I did not take the antibiotic. I don't know if I did the right thing - I'm still not great and the next phase was conjuctivitis. There I did use a little of erythromycin ointment.

I have been having GI issues with loose stools for 3 months now, depending on what I eat. I suspect that it is my SIBO come back. I am second guessing myself and wondering if the Z pak would not have helped that, but then of course, there is the c diff to worry about. I feel like whatever choice I make, it is never an ideal one. But, I also see how doctors just want to throw antibiotics at you. I did have a sputum culture done and it did show some backteria, but since I got better, my endocrinologist felt I should not take the antibiotics. I made him my PCP instead the doctor that I had for years. Seems like he thinks things through a bit more.

hledgess
Regular Contributor
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2016 5:58 pm

Re: Frustration with doctors

Postby hledgess » Mon May 06, 2019 12:00 pm

Ugh I know the feeling! I am a new teacher and have been sick w some cold virus on n off since September.. the last one was intense and a sr tried to give me steroids .. then an abx in case I got a sinus infection.. I took neither .. sinus infections are usually viral anyway so I don’t understand their quick need to give these things out like candy! Feeling icky belly wise atm and at the dr as I write this .. hoping everything is ok but feeling like it’s not .. I’m 3 1/2 years out but Ive been off for over a week


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