Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Doctor Concerns

I know I said my last post would be the last before my surgery, but I am feeling pretty upset and wanted to get some feelings out. Before I talk about those feelings, I just want to say the following. The surgeon we selected to do my surgery has done over 4000 lap band surgeries without complication. He has given talks all over the world and is considered an expert in his field. Every person who has written about him on message boards has said nothing but wonderful things about him and his bed side practice. 

With that said, I am somewhat upset with him right now, and while it may just be nerves talking, I am not 100% confident in him. Here are my issues. 

1) When I went to my initial consultation, he refused to believe that my weight gain could be related to anything other than the fact that I eat too much. I tried to tell him that we have always been diet conscious in our house (we have low fat everything) and that I surprisingly have a fairly small appetite. He believes that the only reason I gained weight is because I consume too many calories. 

2) At the consultation my mom asked a number of questions. Just to give you a quick background, my mom is a psychologist and professor at a big university here in Ontario and does A LOT of research on all of my medical problems/procedures. Like a lot of the doctors I have seen, this doctor did not like the fact that my Mom was questioning him so much, and at times would cut her off before she could ask her question. I personally thought he was rude to my mom, she didn't (I am always sensitive about that. I remember crying in the emergency room before getting a needle in my back, not because I was scared of the needle,  but because I thought the doctor was being mean to my 

3) The doctor made everything sound so easy.  You'll have your surgery, you'll recover in a few days and you will eat whatever your family eats just in smaller amounts. What I have heard from the people who work for him (a lot have had the surgery) and people online, this is not the case. A lot of people don't recover for a couple of weeks and you are not able to eat whatever your family eats because there are a lot of things you may not be able to tolerate.  I will give him the benefit of the doubt on this one because I know that the majority of the follow up after the surgery is done by the nurses and support staff (and he may not know everything people go through after surgery). 

4) After not losing a lot of weight (and actually gaining one day) during the pre-op diet, I wrote my patient co-ordinator and once again expressed concerns about other medical reasons I might not be losing the weight. She wrote back (she is incredibly nice) and said she was forwarding my email to the doctor and I would hear from him directly. Well, I have yet to hear from him (it's been 1 and 1/2 days). 

I don't plan on going into the surgery before I have discussed my concerns with him, but I know that when I am already upset and nervous, it may not come out in the nicest of ways. I am not someone who just thinks "he's the doctor, he knows best" but I also don't want to upset someone who is going to be cutting me open.  Also, I have only met him once, very briefly (maybe 20 minutes) and everyone talks about just how nice he is and how is so great to patients, gives out his personal number and will go out of his way to help his patients. 

I know a lot of people are going to think (and maybe write): 'Don't go through with it, or find another doctor' but it's not that easy. There aren't many lap band surgeons in Ontario. He comes very highly recommended and is seen as a leader in his field. While I am upset by the way he treated my mom and me, I would rather have a good doctor operating on me, rather than a friendly doctor who sucked. 

My mom and I are going to call the office tomorrow to discuss my concerns. We have paid a large amount of money , and I believe I should be 100% confident in him before we go through with the surgery.  Hopefully the bedside manner he has shown all of the people on the message boards comes out, and who knows, maybe I will grow to love him. Fingers crossed. 

To end this post, I wanted to share a joke my mom and I always say every time we meet a doctor like him. 

Q: What's the difference between God and a doctor? 
A: God doesn't think he's a doctor. 


I know I am going to receive a lot of 


  1. I have a food allergy and I literally watched my allergist essentially google it while I was sitting in the room. (I never went back) I was basically informing him about it. You should feel 100% confident about it!!!

  2. I know. Hopefully I will feel better about him tomorrow. The problem to is we forked over a lot of non refundable cash!