A General Practitioner (GP) is a doctor who doesn’t specialize specifically in one area. Basically, they know a little bit about a lot of things, but they don’t know a lot about anything thing…”Jack of all trades, master of none”. Instead, he or she is sort of the front line for daily health issues and can identify specific issues that require specialized services. They are the single point of contact for all your health issues, coordinating with other doctors to make sure your overall healthcare is addressed.
Over the last 10 years, I have seen upward of 20 GPs in an effort to try to find someone to help me. A few have taken my complaints seriously and have tried hard to at least get me to a point that I could function, even if they couldn’t find a diagnosis.
When I first started having severe pain and extreme fatigue, I made an appointment with my primary care physician who ran blood tests and told me “nothing’s wrong with you”. Really? Then why do I feel so bad? Well off course – it must be depression. Stress. Sleep deprivation. I need to imagine myself feeling better – and I will!
I know my body and I know when something is wrong with it. I know when I’m in pain. I know when fatigue is more than lack of sleep. I know I’m not depressed. I know that rashes aren’t normal. So if a doctor dismissed me – guess what – I left! And moved on to the next doctor until I found one that would at least try to help.
Help from a doctor’s perspective means “make the symptom go away”. If they don’t have a cause, then they try to cover it up by prescribing medications. Which I was fine with for years! If you can give me a pill that masks the pain and gives me energy, I’m all for it!
But the pills didn’t help. In fact, they made it worse by adding side effects. And whatever potential side effects they could have, I was going to get all of them! So when they started giving me pills with side effects that included things like “suicidal tendency”, I got a little paranoid that maybe they were trying to get rid of me – permanently!
Back to the point – doctors don’t know everything. GPs know a little about a lot…but with so much information available on the internet, you can help guide your own healthcare. The bottom line is that doctors are the experts about medicine – but YOU are the expert about your own body. You don’t have to agree with your doctor. You get final say in what happens. If you are not comfortable with the plan – speak up, say so. Tell the doctor what your thoughts are and keep searching for answers. Don’t stop. Don’t settle. Don’t quit.
And above all else…pray and praise God for whatever He chooses to do with you. God knows what’s going on with you. And like Job, He has a purpose (even if we don’t understand it). God is still God. God is still good. And I will praise Him.
In His Grip