How do I check a doctor's claims?

A doctor in Thailand claims to have been at MD Anderson cancer center in the late '80s and an associate-professor at Baylor college of medicine in Houston during the early to mid '90s.
While there is nothing I can pin down absolutely, certain things he has said and done make me uneasy. Unfortunately, I seem to have misplaced my medical degree so I have to do what the man tells me unless I can find some concrete reason not to do so.
Are there any on-line ways of checking either or both of those claims?

Regards and TIA

Testy

First and most important - you NEVER have to do what a doctor says just because they say so. You don’t need any reason other than “I don’t want to”. Don’t let him bully you into something, make him CONVINCE you he’s right.

MD Anderson has a website . Unfortunately, the faculty and alumni page isn’t working, but they have telephone numbers and web forms. None of the forms are for your question, naturally, but you can probably get an answer from their Information Line.

Baylor also has a website with contact info. Again, I’d use a general info form to ask your question.

Neither facility should have any problem giving at least a yes/no answer to the question ‘did this person work there in this time frame’. They should also be able to tell you in what capacity - like was he actually a physician, or just a lab tech. Explain your situation and ask all the questions you want - at worst, they’ll say they can’t answer some of them for liability reasons (although that shouldn’t be much risk from Thailand). You may be able to get referred to someone who actually worked with him for more info, too.

Redtail

Thanks. I phrased that badly. I just meant “have to” in the sense that I am paying him to check into my wife’s medical issues and if I’m going to use this guy I need to pay attention and follow his directions.

What unsettled me was his demand for a new CT scan + MRI + bone scan when he was presented with these that were taken less than a month ago. Maybe it is an issue of him having newer/better equipment, but it made some alarm bells ring.
While it may not be fair or at all PC, I know the kinds of things that can slide through in Thailand for a few bucks “under the table.” This is also a concern.

I’ll try checking through the resources you’ve given me and see what I come up with. I’ll frankly admit that I could be having completely unjust thoughts about the man but the situation is serious and I’d like some reassurance. At the same time, I don’t want the man affronted by my doubts just in case he is completely honest.

Thanks again

Testy

Oh, yeah, with you there. It’s just that I’ve been in several situations where people followed doctor’s orders against their own better judgement and it turned out badly. A lot of people seem to turn off their brain when a doctor talks. It’s one of my pet issues, sorry if I went overboard.

Yeah, that’s what I thought of too. Did you ask why he wanted to redo scans, specifically? (I’m guessing that he said because he had better equipment, but could he explain exactly what difference it would make?) Can you go somewhere for a second opinion?

I see the problem. Again, maybe a second opinion would make you feel more confident? No competent doctor should get offended about you getting a second opinion on a major medical issue.

Paying attention to just these sorts of little niggly bad feelings has saved me and my family from bad care in the past, so don’t blow it off or feel guilty. Your responsibility is to your wife, not her doctor.

Sending good thoughts your way. I’ve been through this sort of thing a few times, you have my utmost sympathy.

Thanks again. I know what you mean about people switching off their brains because a doc told them something. There seems to be this “aura” or something about doctors that causes some people to just blindly obey. I suppose it could arguably be a good thing if the doc is a good one. Unfortunately, not all of them are and even the good ones can just have a bad day.

Actually, this guy pretty much is the second opinion. Actually the fourth or fifth. So far, she’s had 4 major surgeries by three different surgeons, 3 chemo sessions by three different docs, and enough radiation to kill a cockroach. She’s got stage 4B thymoma, which doesn’t grow fast, but never actually stops and seems impossible to eradicate. She’s made it for six years now which is beating the odds for this particular disease.
As far as I can tell, we’re pretty much out of options after this last chemo. On the other hand, just telling her to “stop wasting time and money” or something similar just isn’t in me to do.
I know she hasn’t got a long time left, the goddamn stuff is in her major bones, her lungs, liver, and other, less vital areas as well. My fear is that he will claim to be able to cure her. Cancer patients at the end of treatments will (reasonably) clutch at almost any straw. If he makes some claim like that I’m going to know he’s a damn quack but it will put me in a hell of a position.

Not sure why I’m dumping all this on you but thanks for listening.

Best regards

Testy

Testy, I didn’t respond to your OP because I didn’t have any information for you, but I do want to respond to the “dumping on you” statement. Do not hesitate to use this message board (MPSIMS section) to vent. There are a lot of very sympathetic Dopers here, some of whom have been through similar situations to yours. If it helps take the weight off your shoulders so you can be there for your wife, come here and bitch about the unfairness of it all. Sometimes just venting can help release tension - and you need to take care of yourself so you can take care of your wife.

We are here for you. You and your wife will be in my thoughts.

Testy, no problem at all. BTDT with a couple different relatives and one spouse. Can I offer you a good deal on unopened bottles of shark cartilage? g

I’m so sorry for your situation. If you want to talk, I can clear my email and post it (it’s a spam collector mostly).

Testy I don’t know how things work in terms of health insurance where you are but here in the states most health insurance companies have a credentialing department that verifies all of a physician’s credentials before the allow him to participate/be a provider for their health plan.

OK, I say most but I only really have experience with the company I work for. However, I work for one of the top 5 health insurance companies in the US so I’m fairly certain that all of the major carriers do what we do in terms of checking credentials.

So, if you have some kind of health insurance where you are you may be able to verify the doctors credentials with the insurance co.

Good luck to you and your wife.

snakesCatLady
Thanks, I’ll do any further venting in MPSIMS or IMHO although right now I feel that The Pit would be ever so much more appropriate. S It’s kind of you to take the time to respond to a complete stranger’s problems. When I think of it, the actual sense of caring that an on-line community like this can generate is surprising. Sounds like a GD topic to me.

Redtail23
Done deal guy. I’ll swap you a jug of magical ZamZam water from Mecca, some mysterious Chinese fungus, and an unidentified magic plant from Thailand for the shark cartiledge. S

velvetjones
Our insurance company is French and doesn’t seem to do such things. If I understand the (French language) forms correctly, they’ll even pay for homeopathy. Surprising to me but hey, different customs. The only good thing about them is that they pay. Only 75% and I have to pre-pay all the bills and they are slow as Christmas, but they do pay.

Thanks to all of you and if I manage to expose a damn medical fraud I’ll let you know. OTOH, if he’s “as-advertised” I’ll feel duty-bound to mention that as well.

Thank you all again and best regards

Testy