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to wonder why people dont question drs?

(114 Posts)
biddysmama Mon 25-Jul-11 12:29:45

i was talking to a woman in my 'due in' groups and she said she didnt want certain tests but had to ... i told her i refused those tests (downs and diabetes tests) and she said she didnt know she was allowed to refuse..

she was shocked when i told her i refused iron tablets (upped my iron in food instead),downs,cervix exams,diabetes test,induction,injection for placenta after labour..

is it not normal to question and/or opt out of things you dont want or really need?

GeneralCustardsHardHat Mon 25-Jul-11 12:31:28

I think that it is a dangerous thing to be encouraging people to turn down tests and medical intervention at such a dangerous time in their life. But that aside I do agree with you and do worry about people who blindly follow medical advice without question.

squeakytoy Mon 25-Jul-11 12:32:55

I agree to a point, but I do think that doctors do have more knowledge than us, and if you are unsure it is sensible to perhaps question the need, but not ignore their advice out of pure awkwardness.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 25-Jul-11 12:34:54

If it were normal to question doctors, GP Harold Shipman wouldn't have done so much damage.

jeckadeck Mon 25-Jul-11 12:35:40

Agree with GeneralCustard: I wouldn't ever recommend a marginal point of view on medicine to someone if it goes against medical advice. Having said that I think you're right that a lot of people are pretty supine about what the doctors tell them. I think older people in particular treat doctors with quasi-religious respect. My parents think doctors are incapable of putting a foot wrong and never question anything they do or say.

otchayaniye Mon 25-Jul-11 12:35:59

And you are qualified to dispense medical knowledge to strangers?

biddysmama Mon 25-Jul-11 12:36:17

i wasnt saying she should just refuse, but to make sure its the best thing? like the iron tablets, diets better than tablets so i did that, i refused the diabetes and so did my midwife who is also pregnant

RitaMorgan Mon 25-Jul-11 12:36:45

Doctors don't make it clear that you can refuse things! They should be getting informed consent but I guess many don't have the time/inclination.

I tried to refuse IV antibiotics after my ds was born and the Dr basically implied I had no choice - luckily a midwife piped up that it was my decision ultimately.

biddysmama Mon 25-Jul-11 12:37:47

ive made it sound like im just being awkward. its not supposed to.

biddysmama Mon 25-Jul-11 12:38:35

informed consent!!!! thats what i mean, thankyou, im blaming pregnancy/baby brain

squeakytoy Mon 25-Jul-11 12:39:13

Very true Jeckadeck.

My dad would possibly still be alive today if he had questioned his dentist and pushed for a bit more investigation. sad But he had faith in the incompetent twat man, so kept going away with painkillers..... the dentist just kept taking teeth out because he wasnt sure what was causing the pain... over a period of 3 years.... by which time the tumour in my dads upper jaw had grown sad

AMumInScotland Mon 25-Jul-11 12:40:50

I think there's a lot of polarisation - some people would never think to question a doctor, or even to "waste their time" by asking for an explanation. Others will automatically question everything the doctor does, as a matter of principle. And lots of course are somewhere between the two.

There is certainly a generational thing - my granny would never bother the doctor. But then she was brought up at a time and class when a doctor was hugely expensive - you either got better on your own, or you didn't, and either way a doctor cost too much.

I don't think you should encourage people to refuse the "standard" tests and treatment just because they can, but encouraging them to look into things and ask questions is fair game.

GeneralCustardsHardHat Mon 25-Jul-11 12:41:24

But sometimes too much information is a bad thing and the patient can go into information overload.

By all means become an "expert patient" about your condition but do so in conjunction with the medics. It shouldn't be a case of one or the other but should be a case of working together for the good of your health.

likemotherlikeson Mon 25-Jul-11 12:41:26

If you question what a doctor is saying should be done to you, they will be angry.

In an ideal world, we would all have advocates who would stick up for us, as the midwife above did.

I had active birth attendants at all my births, and they were invaluable. I could do with one to defend my rights at my doctor's appointments now, too.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 25-Jul-11 12:43:44

I think people should absolutely question doctors. The doctors do not always have time to read case notes thoroughly and in some instances may be 'trying this and trying that' to see what works.

I didn't used to have this opinion but my mum reminded me how she nearly lost my brother to pneumonia because she was back and forth to a doctor who kept saying it was a childish cold... he was eventually rushed in but even now, as an adult, as a very much weakened chest and that would have recovered if he'd been treated straight away.

Doctors are not gods... good ones know this.

BartletForAmerica Mon 25-Jul-11 12:45:18

Some people seem to think that doctors are out to get us all, when actually we are trying to help people get better/live longer/prevent complications.

Take the diabetes test for example. I don't understand why anyone in the their right mind would not have it. We know that high sugars in pregnancy cause more stillbirths/malformations/delivery complications, so why not have the test?

Same for induction. Some people just want to avoid any medicalisation for the sake of it. Yet we know that babies born more than 10 days late are at higher risk of death.

Yet, around here, there is no discussion of the evidence, just warning against those 'nasty doctors'.


GeneralCustardsHardHat Mon 25-Jul-11 12:45:58

If you're not happy with what a dr says you are more than entitled to a second opinion, so seek one.

catsareevil Mon 25-Jul-11 12:46:13

Of course people should feel able to question what doctors tell them.
If you dont understand what is being suggested and why, then why would you agree to it?

hocuspontas Mon 25-Jul-11 12:52:02

I don't question 'giving' stuff, blood, urine etc but I always ask the provenance (if that's the right word) of drugs and injections. Doctors don't always know but are happy to look it up. I don't like drugs from animals and they are usually happy to prescribe a plant-based equivalent if available.

Scrutler Mon 25-Jul-11 12:55:35

Why on earth wouldn't you want diabetes test? That's just crazy! If you had unknown and uncontrolled sugars through pregnancy, could cause numerous problems for baby and increase risk of things going wrong during labour!

DeWe Mon 25-Jul-11 12:58:59

Squeakytoy, when I was growing up I had a dentist who had the opposite problem. He found a tumour and the person refused to believe it, and kept coming back saying "if you just take that tooth out then it'll be fine." Dentist was really distressed by it. Not sure what happened in the end, but I know the chap wasn't helped by people kept telling him of times when they had found doctors/dentists wrong. sad
I know doctors can often be wrong. My db and ds are both doctors and I couldn't even begin to count the number of times they're wrong. (It was mine!!!!)

Marjoriew Mon 25-Jul-11 13:02:11

when I was in care, we had our own resident doctor, and just like the nuns and priests, he couldn't keep his hands [or other parts of his anatomy] to himself
A few years back, my muscles were hurting really badly and I went to the doctor. He referred me to the consultant at the hospital who, after doing various tests, told me I had polymalgia.
I'd never heard of it, so I said to him ''You just made that up, didn't you?'' He said, no, but I can see from your medical history why you might think that. He prescribed me with steriods and other anti-inflammatory stuff and it started to ease . But I do still question any diagnosis/results I am given, but they are used to that now.

Allinabinbag Mon 25-Jul-11 13:09:40

Having tests for prenatal abnormalities is supposed to be a choice! All medical interventions are supposed to be a choice! That's why if someone refuses to go to hospital and they just die on the street, that is their choice. I'm not sure it's always wise to assume doctors are being malicious, they are usually very well-intentioned, but many things have been routinized (e.g. injection for placenta) that you don't necessarily have to or want to have if you don't want to, though that may place you at a disadvantage (if you indeed do have diabetes or end up bleeding a lot after birth).

Kladdkaka Mon 25-Jul-11 13:10:23

I don't take any prescription medicines until I've run it past my husband, but then he's a chemistry professor and I trust his knowledge of chemicals more than the doctors.

RitaMorgan Mon 25-Jul-11 13:11:09

The medical evidence for things like induction aren't that clear cut though, and just because induction at 40+10/12/14 (or whatever it happens to be at that hospital) is protocol, doesn't mean it is the right course of action for you as an individual.

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