Doctoring Reflection

Thanks for getting better…

I would like to tell you the details of the patient I saw today. And she’d probably be good with it.

But I can’t tell you anything specific, and that’s sad because the story approaches that too-often-used word, “epic.”

It all began a couple years ago when she was first diagnosed by a nurse practitioner. First of all, I like that part of the first chapter. Don’t you?

Yep…there were indeed major problems.

But the good news for most heart patients is that we are really quite good at tackling major problems. The fixing part is our sweet spot.

Here’s the privacy-compliant scenario: First, and always first, education, then some medicine, and then multiple procedures.

Nearly two years later, a woman that was within days to weeks of death is exercising daily, losing weight, helping our young people and no longer taking medicines. Really, she doesn’t have heart disease anymore.

As we shook hands and said goodbye, she held on longer than normal. I felt that surge of emotion. Now I wished we had hugged.

Whenever such goodness happens, our patients want to thank us. That’s understandable, but what I want people to understand is that doctors want to thank them back–for getting better, for responding to medicines, for not having a complication during the scary procedure.

The wonderful sensations of doctoring goes two ways.



4 replies on “Thanks for getting better…”

D**N that’s nice, John. That’s got to be so rewarding – for both of you. nice to hear some good news . . . .

John, don’t forget your associates. My cardiologist’s nurse associate is one of those wonderful, thorough people who has put up with my endless phone calls and questions, and somehow manages to juggle everything else as well. Every doctor’s office should have a Susan. I wish she could be cloned.

Your blog just reminded me that I have some big thank yous to express at this week’s appointment. Too often as patients, we don’t thank enough.

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