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to think DCs shouldn't try to "be brave" for GP?

(17 Posts)
NotOneThingButAnother Thu 06-Apr-17 18:29:52

Both my DDs never give a clear story at the doctors, if there's something wrong they tell me they are trying to be brave, or don't want to make a fuss. Surely this makes it impossible for the doctor to diagnose the problem?

Today DD1 who is 15 has been up all night with crippling stomach pain after a week of constipation and vomiting so we went to GP (urgent appointment). DD lay down to be examined and didn't make a squeak. GP was puzzled as I'd said it was an emergency. As we came out with instructions to come back if it got worse I said to DD "oh so it didn't hurt too much when GP pressed on your stomach?" - no says DD it was agony but I didn't want to show myself up.

So that's just one example but both DDs do this, they think they mustn't show any pain or weakness. Other DD (aged 13) was in hospital the other week (lucky family hmm) and said although she felt awful and wanted to cry she couldn't show any pain or emotion in front of the doctor as that would be bad manners in a public place! I always let DDs speak for themselves in these situations and invariably they'll say something like "oh its not too bad" (mustn't grumble?!)

Is their attitude admirable, or likely to mean no diagnosis or wrong advice?

ErrolTheDragon Thu 06-Apr-17 18:35:04

They should be encouraged to leave their stiff upper lips outside the examination room, and give accurate information to doctors or other HCPs.

Hope they're better soon despite their excess of

NotOneThingButAnother Thu 06-Apr-17 18:47:42

Thanks Errol, I think we need to have a little chat before DD has to go back tomorrow morning (although of course I would prefer a miraculous recovery overnight)

LadyPW Thu 06-Apr-17 18:50:35

You won't get the right diagnosis because the doctor will think 'there's no pain there so it can't be x'. Honesty is the best policy

corythatwas Thu 06-Apr-17 18:52:24

Obviously, it is good if they don't scream hysterically or refuse to let the doctor touch them. But refusing to give accurate information is not being brave: it's just a different way of showing inability to handle the situation. It's what my dd would do and she is on medication for extreme anxiety. Try to make it clear to them that the really mature approach is giving factual information, so the doctor can treat you like an adult, rather than have to try to second-guess you like a child.

BellyBean Thu 06-Apr-17 19:29:24

Maybe encourage your DD to give a rating out of 5 or 10 depending on where he's pressing? She can be neutral but accurate.

NotOneThingButAnother Thu 06-Apr-17 19:30:02

That's very insightful cory I think it is anxiety rather than stoicism.

Lady that's exactly what has happened, GP couldn't understand why there was no pain so has assumed something completely different sad

TeenAndTween Thu 06-Apr-17 19:33:59

I went to a few medical appointments with my MIL for this reason. The doctor would ask her questions and she would underplay things (war generation). My being there would mean I could interject with - 'but it hurts when you put your cardigan on' or whatever. Absolutely they need to give accurate information.

CauliflowerSqueeze Thu 06-Apr-17 19:34:10

Get them to write it down and take in the note to hand to the GP on another occasion. Or keep a log and give it to her to give -
10:30pm - serious pain under ribs - 4/5 pain

It's much easier for the GP to then ask where the pain was that she felt, rather than her having to feel worried about identifying it.

NotOneThingButAnother Fri 07-Apr-17 12:12:03

well we had a chat about explaining things more clearly, and then she got worse so we ended up in A&E last night. Maybe because she was in a lot of pain at the time the A&E doctor spoke to her but she was much clearer however, I did still have to intervene, I queried the painkillers he recommended and that turned into him asking a lot more questions and changing his diagnosis. Had I not said anything it might have actually made things worse.

I'm not sure what conclusions to draw from this - I was really shocked when I realised how wrong the original GP had got it, based on her only wanting to talk to DD and DD not being able to give all the details. I'm not sure, if it was me, if I would have explained it clearly either.

booellesmum Fri 07-Apr-17 12:14:33

Hope they have found the problem and she's ok soon.

NotOneThingButAnother Fri 07-Apr-17 12:26:11

Sorry just to clarify - I said in OP that I always let the DCs speak for themselves, and then in my most recent post I said that the GP only wanted to talk to DD - so what I mean is that I find now they are teenagers, HCP usually only want to talk to DCs and that I usually let that happen trying to be respectful, but I am thinking now that isn't really going to work.

puddingpen Fri 07-Apr-17 12:46:19

As a teenager I fainted at school and my mum made me go to the GP. She came in to his room with me and when he asked me what was wrong I said 'Absolutely nothing. My mum made me come because I had my period and felt a bit dizzy'. The doctor thought it was hilarious. Mum clarified that I had actually lost conciousness and he suggested a blood test, which made me almost faint again. 'Ah,' he said, 'I think we just don't like blood...'

Luckily I've got better with periods, but I still come across all funny at the thought of a blood test!

Anyway, my point is that teens can't really be trusted to speak for themselves if, for example, they want to avoid a blood test or unpleasant treatment.

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Fri 07-Apr-17 13:24:17

As an ex-nurse, I think you need to be blunt with her - once she's better - and say that, unless she is absolutely honest with the doctor, they cannot properly diagnose what is wrong - and they might miss something serious.

Obviously, whilst she is ill now, you'll want to be a bit more tactful, and to make sure you are there when she sees the doctor, to add the info they need, if your dd isn't giving it readily.

BarbarianMum Fri 07-Apr-17 13:36:58

Some people can't be trusted to be open and honest with doctors. I think it's quite common really.
Equally, some teens will not be honest in front of their parent, if present.

user1467976192 Fri 07-Apr-17 14:52:29

When I was a youngster I was almost sent home from a&e with a broken leg. The doctor said it couldn't possibly be broken because I let him touch it. An X-ray confirmed it was in two places

Porpoiselife Fri 07-Apr-17 15:03:41

I have always told mine to make sure they answer the Doctor when he/she asks them a question and to give an honest answer, so if it hurts, say it hurts etc. I have never really been with the whole brave talk, more a 'make sure you speak up and answer when Doctor speaks to you' sort of talk. And usually afterwards i'll say how brave they were, speaking to the doctor (we are talking little tots here, older ones obviously have already had that talk a few times and so automatically speak up and say exactly whats the problem)

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