Yesterday, I had a doctor appointment. Nothing in particular wrong with me, my doctor simply asked that I come in (it had been a year since I had been to see her).
Like many fat people, I often view doctor visits with trepidation.
This visit was particularly stressful because I am going through a bout of depression and the night before I got almost no sleep (thanks to our blind old cat Salem deciding to yowl the night away).
So I drag my fat old lady ass into the doctor’s with a big ol’ chip on my shoulder and ready for a fight.
I was unhappy that the medical assistant wanted to take my blood pressure – I had been to see my orthopedist two days before and they had taken my blood pressure then (I’m part of an HMO, so this is all in my medical record), but she insisted. I told her okay if they had a thigh cuff for the machine for my fat upper arm.
The problem with the blood pressure machines, at least for me, is they give a false high reading. And, although, it is my right, according to my HMO, to have my blood pressure taken manually, it appears to be a lost art among the medical assistants, and they practically faint when you ask them to take a manual blood pressure reading.
Many times I have gotten the false high, then had the doctor retake it manually and my blood pressure is just fine. My blood pressure is fine even AFTER I have had an argument with the doctor about being put on blood pressure medication because of the false high reading and because I’m a fat old lady (and being a fat old lady, healthcare professionals are SURE I have high blood pressure).
I did some reading, and found that a reading can be taken, with the machine, if they take it on the lower arm – which is not as accurate but (for me) gives a better reading than the upper arm with a too-small cuff; and best of all, they can get an accurate reading if they use the correct sized cuff, which in my case means using a thigh cuff.
Now, usually at that point, they just take it on the lower arm; but wonders of wonders, they actually had a thigh cuff. My blood pressure reading came out great (and I didn’t end up with a bunch of broken veins in my upper arm either).
So I’m sitting in the examination room, and in comes my doctor, and as usual, she’s a sweetheart. I know why I get the dreads when it comes to doctor appointments, but I also know my doctor is cool and focuses on my health, not my weight. And overall, my health is fine. We went over my last test results, adjusted one medication, updated my medication list, and she sent me on my merry way.
I can’t tell you how much better I felt. Okay, I can – I felt so much better.
If you have a doctor who treats you badly – GET A NEW DOCTOR.
There is simply no reason to suffer with an ass-hat for a doctor. It’s bad enough to deal with an ass-hat when there is nothing much going on; but when you have a serious condition and/or are really sick, having an ass-hat for a doctor can be really bad for you, mentally and physically.
Seriously, y’all – get a doctor who is your partner in healthcare, not your nemesis.