Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Dear Doctor...

Thought I'd share the letter that I wrote to our former pediatrician.  I thought he might be interested to know why out of the blue 5 of his patients switched practices...I sent it last Saturday...I don't expect a response, though I do wonder if I'll get it goes!!!
Dear "Doctor" (I won't use his name for the sake of it...),

I really felt like I wanted to express my reasoning for switching practices, as it was not an easy or fast choice. I have always loved having you as a doctor, and felt like you have treated me and my children with care. I was especially impressed with the care you gave Oakley when she went through so many UTI’s, and your persistence in finding some answers for us. It meant so much to me!!!

When we had Romy, I felt like she didn’t get quite the same treatment. When I had concerns, I felt like they were not addressed, but brushed off. This is not entirely your fault because many times I called in and could only speak with your nurse. On one occasion I had called in because Romy had been overly fussy for 5 days straight. I had tried everything it seemed. Chris suggested that maybe she had gas, and needed me to play “motor boat” with her legs amongst other basic suggestions. If I am calling in, this means that I have tried EVERYTHING else, and I am out of ideas. I also called in about her anisocoria, and was told it was not a problem she needed to be seen for. It wasn’t until I had an actual appt that I was able to bring it up and get her to a specialist.

It was beginning to feel as though my concerns weren’t being addressed, and my biggest concern had yet to happen. In July, I began noticing that she wasn’t using her right arm. She moves it, but she doesn’t use it. When I spoke to you about it, you thought that maybe she was showing a hand preference. I was disappointed when you didn’t examine her. I was so torn. When seeing some of her specialists, I brought up the symptom with them, and they told me that children do not have hand preferences until about the age of 2, and that I should bring this up with my pediatrician. Imagine my discouragement when I had already done that. Our ophthalmologist decided that it was concerning enough along with her anisocoria that she wanted to find out more. She went on to order an MRI on her head and shoulder. Thus beginning a battle between offices for me.

When central scheduling called me, the tests had been changed from MRI’s to CT scans. I was frustrated. Why put my child through anesthesia and un-necessary radiation because it was “cheaper” as Chris explained to me. I tried to explain that if we DIDN’T find something wrong, I would demand an MRI to find more information because I felt like my daughter had a real symptom going on that needed to be addressed. If the CT scans DID find something, you would want an MRI done for her to find out more…so either way, she would have ended up in an MRI and it would not be cheaper. Chris proceeded to tell me that you did not feel like it was necessary, and that you had no ability to change the tests. So I called the ophthalmologist back and discussed my concerns with them. They agreed, and called and talked with you. The test STILL remained CT scans.

The decision to leave finally came down to feeling that my intuition and concerns did not matter. I needed to find someone that would listen and validate. I understand that you may deal with some moms that are new that will jump at everything, but I have been doing this for nine years, and feel as though that should earn me just a little credibility. I have children that were never even seen other than shots…so it isn’t like I have made a reputation of un-necessarily seeing the doctor.

I really didn’t want to leave. I didn’t. It was such a hard decision. You really were a good doctor, and I really wanted you to hear me. It took four months to make the decision to find another doctor, and took having someone I knew to make that decision. I didn’t just go to anyone…they had to be just as good.

I just wanted to let you know that Romy did have her MRI’s done. We got the results back yesterday, and found out that she has had either a stroke or a brain bleed (corona radiata) on the left side of her brain explaining why her eye and arm are affected. They aren’t sure yet how much damage there has been, and we will be seeing a neurologist to begin her journey.

I don’t want this to be a hate letter, or a finger-pointing letter, but maybe just an eye-opening letter for you. Please, please just listen. Sometimes it may be nothing…and sometimes it may be something. I thought it would feel good to be right about this after everything that had happened…but sometimes, you don’t want to be right…because it’s not about being right…it’s about being heard.

Thank you for all that you have done for my children. I really appreciate it all. I really do. I think you are a fine doctor, and I really wish that things would have been different.

Take care,

The Lords Family…
Sweet Romy Lin at the hospital getting ready for her MRIs!!!


Kristina P. said...

Powerful letter. I hope he listens.

Missy said...

WoW! I am so sorry you had to experience this frustation. You did the right thing. I will be praying for Romy.

Deborah Austin said...

That was so good! I am glad you sent it and I know it was so hard to switch.

I am anxious to hear how your visit with the neurologist goes.
To answer your question about dance. I just go to the YMCA it is month to month and all the other place want you to commit and how can I commit right now for a year with Kayelee we would miss so much and she loves it so for now we are doing it there and the girls love it. If we get to a place where we can commit to a long period of time like that there is a place in Middleton I like a lot. If you want more info on her studio I can let you know and I know Jenna has baylee at a place there in caldwell that she likes.

A.Lee said...

That letter is awesome--you make your point without getting mean or hostile. You were very diplomatic and I agree that you needed a change seeing how things have gone recently. Good for you!

Em said...


The Yearsley's said...

Wow Tamra! That letter couldn't be MORE perfect!