Back early October, I was feeling so lethargic and tired. My energy levels were plummeting and I just felt horrible. Plus my weight was going up. Having been hypothyroid for 26 years, I figured my thyroid was off so I booked an appointment with my Doctor of 10 years to ask him to check it. Appointment was October 10th. I will refer to my Doctor as Dr. Dick, not his real name, but Dick does rhyme with his real name. Dr. Dick is also a fitting handle…
A little history about Dr. Dick. I always thought he was a nice doctor however he frustrated me over the years. For example, if you ever had an urgent medical problem you could never get an appointment and often it would be 3-4 weeks out. Countless times, I had no choice but to go to Walk-in clinics. Over the years, I tried a few times to change doctors. Dr. Dick’s secretary convinced me to stay and said she would try to squeeze me in if she could. Well, that rarely happened. I had a few meet and greets with other family doctors over the last 10 years. However, I found that none of them were any more accessible than Dr. Dick. Plus the good thing about Dr. Dick was he never rushed you and was pleasant. He would always ask what he could do for you and always asked if there was anything else he could help you with before your appointment was over. So, if and when you got an appointment you would have to be prepared with a list of items because you never knew when you would see him again. I should also mention I have some other friends that I found out inadvertently are/were patients of Dr. Dick. A very good friend of ours was misdiagnosed by him and had Stage 4 Esophageal cancer found by another practitioner. Thankfully, he is doing very well.
Doctors are called practitioners…because they are practicing. Most Doctors are only as good as the info you provide them and only if they consistently see and get to know you. OR as my sister-in-law Bev says, someone has to graduate at the bottom of their class.
Prior to doing my blood work, I preemptively booked my next appointment with Dr. Dick for November 7th…it was the earliest date I could get. Knowing this, I did my blood work on October 20th and is the same day I accidentally felt a bump on my right boob. I first thought, a pimple!? It was small, probably pea-sized. Then I looked closer and realized it was under the skin. I tried to squeeze it…nope not a zit and ouch!
By the way, October 20th was my 27th Wedding Anniversary. Some people get roses, well I got a stress bump. I had my husband take a look, he is only allowed to look once a year. He just confirmed it was a bump and I just said I would have Dr. Dick take a look.
I must add, I also routinely check my blood work online and saw my results on October 22nd indicating an issue with my thyroid. Needless to say, my Doctor never called to advise of the results nor arranged to book a follow up appointment. This was typical Dr. Dick and I wasn’t concerned because I had already had an appointment. I was right, my thyroid was off, and figured it explained my exhaustion. I feel I missed my calling into medicine..
So I made my list and was prepared for my November 7th appointment. Thyroid medication was adjusted. When I got to the stress bump, Dr. Dick briefly looked and I mean he did a half glance, didn’t examine me and said and I quote “that is 100 percent a cyst”. I tried to interject and he said, “that is definitely not cancer and don’t worry about it, nothing needs to be done” I am thinking I don’t even want a cyst… So, that was the last day I saw Dr. Dick because I think he thought he had x-ray vision.
I had a strong feeling that I needed proof that my stress bump was a cyst. I also think knowing some of my other friend’s experiences with Dr. Dick, I needed to make sure. A week or so later, while looking for a Christmas present for my husband, I saw a Walk-in Clinic that had opened up. I felt almost to tired to walk over but decided I should really inquire if any Doctors were taking on new patients since I was only a couple of units away. They promptly said yes and would arrange a “meet and greet.” I said I probably should know if the Doctor is a man or a woman and their name. The girl said the Doctor was a woman and a name that was inaudible and after repeating it twice I said “Can you spell it?” The first two letters of her name were “O, K”. I stopped the secretary and said sign me up if her name starts with OK, she is OK for me. Best thing I ever did… Not only did she examine both breasts at my meet and greet she arranged an ultrasound. My records were transferred Nov 17th to Dr. Ok and my ultrasound done on Nov 27th, 2017.
My point to this is not only do you need to listen to your body, you need to be pro-active, and also be persistent if you think something is wrong. I consider myself fortunate to have found a doctor so quickly because I had no luck previous times. It makes me wonder what would have happened if I didn’t pursue this. I could have been “tit-less up in the rhubarb”. I do believe it was a call from the universe and the stars aligned.
Doctors are only human and do make mistakes. Some Doctors are just not thorough or dismissive when they should be just the opposite… This situation is only one of many I have encountered over my life with our health care system. Needless to say, I have trust issues… This is the “Neurotic Nettie” personality..