T Nation

Medical Advice on the Boards

[quote]Professor X wrote:
hockechamp14 wrote:
What about people who lack doctors? We have an athletic trainer and a trainer who’s in training. In the past three years, I have broken my thumb twice. Both times it was incorrectly diagnosed.

I believe with the way it swelled up like crazy both times, it should have been easy to tell me it was broken. I think if I asked for opinions here, someone might have been able to tell me it is likely broken.

Luckily for me the second time, the trainer told me to go see the doctor – 4 days after it was broken.

-On another note, we don’t have acess to a doctor here, and more importantly, when the doctor comes, you’ll likely get a mouthfull from the school if it isn’t something serious. So I think there are some people that can be helped by posting.

I don’t think anyone is faulting the people asking the questions as much as we are faulting some of the people trying to give a full diagnosis over the internet without making it clear that the person will probably have to see a doctor. [/quote]

exactly, well said

First let me say I have no delusions that I am anyone’s guardian angel. (Well ok maybe a couple but certainly no one on these boards).

But rather to point out the inherent dangers in seeking diagnosis and advice from unqualifed individuals and on these or any other message board.

I also had hoped that a open discussion on the topic would perhps open the eyes of those that asked for help and those that gave advice.

And to whether I had responded to any of the threads asking for diagnosis etc. Yes I did quite a few and always strongly urged them to seek qualifed medical treatment.

I would also like to point out that during this thread I have consistantly said there is nothing wrong with sharing experiances and even information for informations sake.

But yet with out fail people get on here and say I don’t see anything wrong with me telling someone how I dealt with something. etc.

part of the problem is obviously people do not take the time to read things thouroughly or they have a serious comprehension problem either way it doesn’t help.

For the record:

It is not a good idea to seek diagnosis on a message board or follow medical advice on one either. This cannot be debated the very notion is nonsense.

It is extremely irresponsable to dole out advice in the same manner and all of the above can be potentially deadly.
This above all else cannot be debated.

I have an extensive medical background and as you see by my screen name I have spent the majority of my life caring for the wellfare of other people. So I am qualified to say all of the above.

No I am not losing sleep over this but thought it was important enough to address.

When you share an experiance or information it is important to realize that people will take what you say to heart it doesn’t matter why they just do.

I can almost gaurantee no one on here would buck up and take responsibilty for something going horribly wrong with someone they gave their missguided advice too.

By the way since I know from experiance someone did not read this thoroughly once again.

There is a big differance in telling someone to put a ice pack on their knee when they smack it on the coffee table and telling someone to ice down their injection site after they just explained they have bloody puss oozing from it and a bruise covering their entire hip and upper thigh and their leg is tingling “Oh yeah that happened to me it’ll be fine just Ice it down it;ll resolve its self”.

C’mon did I really have to point out the differance?

Within days the above goy is scheduled for amputation but dies from sepsis which they could not get under control.

Not worth the roll of the dice to me obviously it is to some people.

For some things it’s foolhearty to not see a doctor. For most things it’s foolhearty to see a doctor. I can count on one hand the times the medical community has been of any help to me. I can also name, maybe as many times, they have harmed me.

Seeing doctors is usually the biggest waste of time. I take time off work to see doctor number 1. He doesn’t come up with anything so he sends me to Doc #2. I take time off work to see Doc 2. He sends me for an MRI (or something). I take time off for that and of course the doctor won’t talk to me over the phone to let me know the results so I have to take time off again to find out that they didn’t find anything. They then send me to physical therapy for 8 weeks and it does no good.

This is a scenario that has played out many times in my life. About a year ago I went through this process over some minor knee pain. When I got to the physical therapist he quickly proceeded to fuck up my knee big time. No instead of a minor anoyance I have a boarderline disability. I’ve also had physical therapist make Piriformis Syndrome worse, a pec injury worse and a hip flexor injury worse.

With the hip flexor injury I kept telling the PT I thought the stretching was hurting it. He kept telling me its been prooven to help. When I finally quit going and quit stretching it got better in a couple of weeks. For all those injuries I was refered to PT by Doctors

Doctors mostly just pass the buck. If they know what’s going on they might be able to help, but if they don’t know, they spend no time trying to figure it out. No time researching or consulting on your behalf. They just pass you alongto the next guy.

A Podiatrist helped me get over pain in the arch of my foot and a Chiropractor has been a big help for neck pain. Doctors and PT’s were worthless with the neck pain for a year and a half. Probably if I had seen a Chiro right off my neck wouldn’t be a chronic problem now. No Doctor ever suggested I see a Chiro.

Doctors suck! Physical Therapists suck! If I’m offending any MD’s or PT’s by this I’m really sorry. NO I’M NOT!!!

[quote]Bodyguard wrote:
I would like some feedback on the following.

On a regular basis people post on these boards asking for Medical Diagnosis and or Advice.

I am not only alarmed and amazed at this in and of itself but in that other members often offer Diagnosis and advice.

This is extremely fool Hearty in my opinion because not only are these people in alot of cases wasting valuable time when they could be seeking competant medical attention. But their is no way in hell a proper diagnosis can be given over the internet without seeing the patient, and most certainly not by another member sitting at their computer.

I am not reffering to those that state along the lines of I suffered a dislocated shoulder does anyone have experiance with this and how long were you out of commision? This type of thing is fine for sharing experiances.

But I have seen people post with Kidney problems, symptomology leaning toward abcesses, Head injuries, Discharges from the genitals, severe swelling and bruising etc. etc.

It is absolutely frightening that some one would seek advice on this or any other board it is even more frightening that self described experts answer with anything other than what are you wasting time for get to a doctor now.

Listen if you have concerns about your health get to the ER or the Doctor.

If you did something stupid like screw your self up using roids tell your freakin doctor what you did don’t hide anything he can’t treat what he doesn’t know and by the time he finds out you may be in serious trouble! A Doctor may chastise you for being an idiot if that, they are dedicated and committed to treating you to allow no further harm to come to you, shelve the embarassment its your life.

I am not a doctor never claimed to be but I do have an extensive medical background and I assure you time is immportant I also assure you people do unfortunately listen to dumb advise and make their situation worse.

If I get any indifferance to this post let me just say this, if you argument is that if somebody is dumb enough to ask for advice and take what they get on here then so be it. Let me just say there is a good chance that person has somebody in their life that cares for them and wants them to be whole, so do it for their loved ones and just tell them to see a doctor.

If you argue that this may be the only place they can turn or are comfortable with then tell them to go see a doctor if they turn to this place for answers this is the one they should be getting.

I hope anyone coming here with medical concerns in the future understands that time is of the essance and that they seek proper treatment from a competant medical professional and I wish them well.

[/quote]

Dude, I think you should see a psychiatrist, you seem to be having strong emotional issues concerning this topic…

Sorry, but your own arguements naturally lead to this conclusion! :wink:

[quote]vroom wrote:
Dude, I think you should see a psychiatrist, you seem to be having strong emotional issues concerning this topic…

Sorry, but your own arguements naturally lead to this conclusion! ;)[/quote]

Yeah, your right. I have to be crazy to have kept going to Doctors as much as I did.

Any one that complains about their doctor needs to understand a few things.

First a doctor cannot always tell by looking at you or even asking you questions what is wrong with you.

People often are not fourthcoming often hide things often feel some things aren’t worth metioning. etc.

Some ailments do not readily show them selves and extensive testing must be done (Sorry to inconveiance you but hey its only your life.)

Some ailments represent themselves as other problems because the symptomology is so close.

It is also a process of elimination some times.

People need to understand that your doctor sends you to specialist because they are specialists which makes the argument against seeking advice on the boards even more relavant if your doc is sending you to someone more qualified then c’mon does everything have to be spelled out for you.

And that is not to mention all the people who say My Dr. treats me in a manner I don’t like or hee/she never helped me but then when pressed further you see these same people never saught second/third opinions, its your body your life demand another opinion if you must seek it on your own take control don’t just say “F” it no one cares or all Doctors suck.

If you freakin car lept blinkin on you you’d find a damn mechanic who could fix the problem so don’t hand me that its a waste of time BS if you dont care about your own health so be it but dont make excuses and try to justify it.

Medicine is not absolute like life itself but there is hundreds and thousands of yrs behind some of it.

I think most people who complain about doctors and medicine generally have not been told what they wanted to hear at some point.

Originally when I first posted I wasn’t expecting or hoping for much more than a few decent comments and input, and maybe some sound judgement.

But now while I see the very people I expected would have some sensible input did. I also see that I may have been expecting to much in the little I did expect from some people.

While I’m far from losing sleep over it . I have to say I am at least slightly dissappointed but not surprised.

The question I have now is was this post a waste?

Your post was not a waste. In the case of the poster who had a perirectal abscess, unless his abscess was large enough to palpate or clinically view, his symtoms could have been many other ailments. That could easily explain why it took that long to get a diagnosis for it. I don’t think patients understand this in any field. They think their doctor, dentist, or chiro is supposed to not only be psychic but also have x-ray vision.

Yeah, I’ve been poking fun, but this thread was not a waste.

It is important for some folks to think about these issues. However, there is only so much you can do about peoples attitudes and behaviors.

Prof. and Vroom you were the one I was referrancing when I mentioned the people I expected to be rational.

Thank You for your comments.

Not sure if this thread has done any good but if it has impacted even one person positively I’ll take that.

P.S. If any one else wants to take a crack at me, I’ll say this.

I am proud of what I do I find no shame in caring.

And I have looked into the eyes of a 8 yr old girl as she slipped away from me because her parents listened to their neighbor and beleived she would get over the blow she received to the head.

This topic strikes me emotionally as I’ve had many problems throughout the years with doctors, therapists, etc…

I think one of the main problems is the majority of doctors really couldn’t give a rats ass if you get better or not, there is practically no thought directed towards preventative medicine, and most doctors stop learning at the end of med school. Not a great recipe for success. Ultimately you have to have a vested interest, and be a responsible consumer, if you want any improvement. Leaving your life to the fate of others no matter how knowledgable is a recipe for disaster.

I believe there are a select few specialists that genuinely fit all three categories, a large number doing nothing for you, and many still creating more problems than what you started with.

For every medical problem I’ve had throughout the years I’ve had to research the solution myself. For my backpain I’d been to countless “experts” (physiotherapists, chiropractors, athletic therapists, ART practitioners, orthopedic surgeons, etc…). I didn’t get better until I read Stuart McGill’s latest book on back health a couple years ago, and followed a tailored nutritional/supplement program based on my metabolic type to ease the muscle spasms that couldn’t be stretched. Not to mention doctors’ ineptness with my hypoglycemia, acne, and depression, that I eventually “cured” by researching close to 5,000 hours throughout the last 10 years. I’m still waiting for my medical degree and nobel prize in the mail but it hasn’t come yet(sarcasm). :slight_smile:

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Your post was not a waste. In the case of the poster who had a perirectal abscess, unless his abscess was large enough to palpate or clinically view, his symtoms could have been many other ailments. That could easily explain why it took that long to get a diagnosis for it. I don’t think patients understand this in any field. They think their doctor, dentist, or chiro is supposed to not only be psychic but also have x-ray vision.
[/quote]

Ok let me elaborate. It started out with a slight pain in my anal region and then moved to my testicles as well. It became progressively worse over a period of 1.5 months to the point that I couldn’t even stand upright. It was so swollen I could feel a VERY large lump on both lower cheeks and it was visible. First the Dr. told me I need to stop faking in order to miss school. That was the biggest kick in the nuts I’ve recieved in my 20 years of life so far. Then I went and had an MRI done and even placed a little metal bb on the lump and still they couldn’t see anything. Again I went to another specialist(by this time is was EXTREMELY painful and the lump was highly notable) he wrote it off as inflamation but couldn’t tell me why the area was inflamed. Finally one night the pain was so bad I just went to the ER hopefully to recieve some pain medication if nothing else. The ER Dr. told me I was very lucky he caught it in time and was baffled how the others so easily missed it. He even asked for their names because he wanted to call them to address their mistakes. I had surgery schelduled for the next morning and afterward the Dr. told me it was the worst rectal abcess he’d EVER seen. So in my experience 4/5 Dr.'s are incompetant. Does this mean all are? No, but the majority are.

I never imagined that by starting this thread it would turn into a lets bash doctors thread.

I sypathize with everyone who has had a bad experiance with a doctor.

But I liken this to people who say all cops are dicks yet when there house gets robbed they call the police.

Dr.s bekeive it or not are falable and not perfect neither is medicine their are few absolutes.

Even when a misdiagnosis is given it is not necessarily a indication of incompetance or even a lack of knowledge sometime it is a matter of perception based off of a doctors individual experiance.

Often people come in complaining about something that cannot be seen even with the intial set of tests often they come in complaining of symptoms they are not presenting at the time they come in a Dr. has to use judgement, knowledge, science, test results, and experiance as well as psychology in assessing a situation sometimes its on the money sometimes its not. Hell if everything a Dr. does is correct but the freakin lab screws up it doesn’t mean the Dr. is incompetant.

People need to stop expecting their doctors to be Magicians.

The very idea that all doctors are incompetant because your individual set of circumstances wasn’t what you expected is in and of itself absurd.

By that logic no one enters medicine or law enforcement or teaching or any field of the sort for any reason other than to hurt people that is ridiculous.

Every time something does not turn out text book perfect its all because the medical establishment is corrupt and lacking?

(Yes true malpractice does exist but it is not the norm nor is it the standard by which all other should be judged.)

When a doctor reaches a conclusion and is wrong that is just where his findings led him. The very best minds in the world have been led astray based off of the information that has been presented to them.

This thread may not have been a waste but it may hold little hope.

I respect your intelligence, I’m just curious as to why you think this thread may be a waste of time? Because people don’t agree with you?

I think we at least started a healthy debate here. I don’t think anyone’s being over viscious or dramatic. Hopefully everyone will be more equipped to see both sides of the issue. I don’t think it’s really the doctors’ fault as much as the powers that be that have shaped the medical system (pharmaceutical companies, AMA, profit focused care).

The AMA basically brands any doctors with alternative thinking as heretics whether it’s helping people or not. The number of forward thinking doctors that have focused on preventative medicine being black-listed by the AMA is astounding. How can any progress be made when they are afraid of change? I’m not talking about crack-pot theories based on voodoo and fluff but scientically sound double blind controlled experiments published in major medical journals being ignored.

As an internet doctor, I am fully qulified to give medical advice online.

Doctors absolutely suck when it comes to mechanical problems (sports injuries). They are quite good at treating earaches and appendicitis and shit but I will probably never go to a doctor again for an injury unless I break something.

Most PTs aren’t very good at what they do, either. In fact I believe that many PTs are more or less in the business of “selling” you as many exercises and treatment modalities as your insurance will pay for, whether you need them or not…

[quote]Bri Hildebrandt wrote:
I respect your intelligence, I’m just curious as to why you think this thread may be a waste of time? Because people don’t agree with you?

I think we at least started a healthy debate here. I don’t think anyone’s being over viscious or dramatic. Hopefully everyone will be more equipped to see both sides of the issue. I don’t think it’s really the doctors’ fault as much as the powers that be that have shaped the medical system (pharmaceutical companies, AMA, profit focused care).

The AMA basically brands any doctors with alternative thinking as heretics whether it’s helping people or not. The number of forward thinking doctors that have focused on preventative medicine being black-listed by the AMA is astounding. How can any progress be made when they are afraid of change? I’m not talking about crack-pot theories based on voodoo and fluff but scientically sound double blind controlled experiments published in major medical journals being ignored.[/quote]

If that was intended for me re-read what I wrote I did not say it was a waste of time.

In my previous post I had asked if others thought it was a waste.

As for not agreeing with me knock yourself out! That is your choice and I absolutly respect that. Especialy if it was regarding how you feel about doctors.

But if you disagree that it is not a good idea to ask for a diagnosis or medical advice on a message board I assure you that is misguided and dangerous and I genuinly hope you change your mind.

Now if we are going to continue this can we at least stick to the original topic?

It may seem obvious to most people to not ask for or expect accurate medical advice on an internet chat board, and that is is a bad idea in general, but you must consider that it is not obvious to the people who do it.

Therefore, I would say that Yes, this is a valuable thread. It may wake a few people up.

As far as the doctor hating goes- Hell everybody hates someone- lawyers, bankers, doctors. It doesn’t have to be rational, it’s hate.

[quote]Bodyguard wrote:
If that was intended for me re-read what I wrote I did not say it was a waste of time.

In my previous post I had asked if others thought it was a waste.

As for not agreeing with me knock yourself out! That is your choice and I absolutly respect that. Especialy if it was regarding how you feel about doctors.

But if you disagree that it is not a good idea to ask for a diagnosis or medical advice on a message board I assure you that is misguided and dangerous and I genuinly hope you change your mind.

Now if we are going to continue this can we at least stick to the original topic?[/quote]

Sorry about the mis-quotation. I must’ve read it wrong.

I agree on the part about not asking Joe Blow on an internet board for medical advance. Asking someone with no medical training a medicinal question is rediculous.

On the other hand is it sometimes useful to talk to an internet doctor/health practitioner for medical advice? In some circumstances yes. In most probably no. Is it better to see any doctor in person rather than the internet? Definitely. But life isn’t always that easy. Not everyone has access to the top specialists in the world at their doorstep.

Not everyone is ambitious or intelligent enough to research on their own and make qualified decisions. For the majority of people I’d say outright, talk to a doctor for a diagnosis and treatment, as a precaution. It’s politically correct if you will.

I don’t think it’s a black and white issue. If the person has gone to upteen specialists, is staying the same or getting worse, there may be instances where they’ll have to travel outside the realm of traditional medicine out of desperation. I know I did.

An article some may find of interest.

For the record I don’t hate traditional medical doctors. They are definitely useful in some cases. I just won’t blindly follow them.

I have had some pretty bad family experience with doctors.
I won’t go into details but I will only say that dogs do not eat dogs.
Think about it.