by catherine (2832 Posts), Wed Nov 26, 2003 09:48 pm
Don't doubt yourself Jen. I think that when a patient's symptoms don't fit a recognizable pattern two things happen. The patient begins to feel like a hypochondriac because the vibe is "I'd don't recognize this, is this a "real" disease syndrome I'm seeing?" So you feel as if you're making things up, which is entirely untrue. The second thing is that the Drs seem to become defensive. No surprise really, it is probably difficult to admit to a patient that you haven't a clue as to what is causing their problem, whether you're seeing one thing, or a group of things overlapping etc.
I think the best thing you can do is deal straight, look the relevant OB in the eye. Remind him or her that is your precious baby that you are carrying and you want to do the very best you can for him/her. At the same time point out that you are not whiny, needy, acting out or seeking attention. Furthermore, that you do understand that the OB may not have all the answers right now. I would also explain what your major fears are, eg. preeclampsia. I think that some doctors have a standard "bedside manner" sometimes vague, usually cheery etc. Just say that this particular style doesn't suit you, you would like to be considered a partner in bringing this baby to full term but that you understand that you are not a peer. So, "you're fine" etc. doesn't reassure you, you'd be more comfortable with a concise description of where you are healthwise.
Before you start thinking.. "get off your high horse woman, did you do that?" The answer is not entirely. However, I did tell the OB the two things that scared me most, a)being as sick again as I had been in the previous pregnancy... and he promised that he would do his very best to prevent that happening (with no guarantees), and b)that it would come at a point in the pregnancy where the baby wouldn't do as well as my daughter did. I think that is when I realized that the man was being as honest as he could be because he straight away told me that it was possible that those two things were incompatible and that he would be concerned for my health first. If I wasn't willing to accept that, perhaps I should look elsewhere for another OB. It made me a little sad to acknowledge such a possibility but at that point all the cards were on the table.
It's hard to deal with Jen but stick to your position, ask your questions. Keep reminding your OB that you want to understand what is going on, after all you're altogether for only one reason.... your baby!
DH, Dave (40)