Medical professionals, I need advice on finding a doctor.

I’ve been trying to lose a substantial amount of weight for the better part of the past 3 years. Without going into exhaustive detail about my medical history over these past 3 years, let me just say that I’ve been to 2 different family practitioners, a nutritionist and an endocrinologist. None of them have shown the slightest interest in actually digging in and finding the root of whatever my problem may be.

I’ve gone to these doctors armed with journals of my eating plans, exercise logs, research I’ve done on possible conditions and tests I’d like to have, etc. The response I’ve had from all of them, paraphrased, has been “You’re perfectly healthy despite your weight. Be happy with the weight you’ve lost (about 30% of my most modest goal) and try to accept the fact that you might never lose the rest.”

Obviously, this does not make me happy, and frankly, I just flat out don’t accept that as an answer.

The questions I’m asking are: What can I do to find a doctor who’s actually interested in spending the time it will take to figure this thing out? Is there a specialist (other than another endo) I should seek out? What would you do for a patient in my situation?

Oh…and if anyone feels like suggesting that I just eat less and exercise more, I reserve the right to stick a traffic cone up your patoot.

This is one of the most frustrating problems I deal with, both professionally and personally.

What can a doctor do to help you lose weight? The biggest thing he can do is rule out medical problems underlying someone’s excessive weight, particularly hypothyroidism. He can also screen for diseases that go along with being overweight, like heart disease and diabetes. If untreated depression is leading to weight gain, he can treat that.

If everything like that turns out to be OK, then unfortunately, there isn’t much else a doctor can do for you short of gastric bypass. (An endocrinologist is a particular waste of time and money in this instance.) He can give you dieting advice, and he can help you with an exercise program, but there just aren’t many answers out there that don’t boil down to “eat less and exercise more”.

I guess I’m not clear on what you want a doctor to do for you–are you looking for medical reasons for your inability to lose weight? Psychologic reasons? Are you looking for something besides “eat less and exercise more”, or would you be happy with a more practical and do-able version of that advice?

For someone who has been told by several doctors that they have no major health issues underlying their weight gain, I would not recommend a trip to another doctor. I would instead recommend a nutritionist (which you’ve already seen, but I don’t know why it didn’t work out–another one might be better) and/or a gym where they offer some good exercise advice.

Sorry I can’t be more help.

Waiting for that traffic cone up my ass,
Dr. J

I suppose that my point is that I’ve been doing the “eat less, exercise more” thing until I’m blue in the face and it gets me nowhere. What I want is a doctor (or someone, if a doctor isn’t going to do it) who will take enough of an interest in my particular case to want to figure out why nothing I’ve tried has worked for me.

I guess my frustration is that, while everyone wants to boil the problem down to “eat less, exercise more”, when given pointed evidence that I have in fact done that, everyone I’ve talked to has shrugged and said “Well…give up then.” I feel like there must be a reason, I just need someone with more expertise than I have to help me figure it out, but so far I’ve had nothing…not even from people who are supposed to want to help me. :frowning:

Pardon me if you have heard this before (I know I have posted it a few times before) but before you quit on MDs, you might want to look into having your insulin checked. I was overweight for over 20 years despite efforts to diet. After reading an article that described my body and circumstances (became overweight at puberty, abdominal fat–aka apple-shaped, etc) I had my insulin checked. Turns out it was 5X normal, a condition called hyperinsulimia. No wonder I couldn’t lose weight! My MD put me on glucophage (a medicine for diabetes despite the fact that my blood sugar wasn’t high) and I went on a lowish carb diet. 9 months later I had lost 100 pounds.

To me, the moral of the story is don’t give up. There are reasons that people are overweight, and thyroid problems aren’t the only reason. Virtually every MD I have seen (aside from the reproductive endocrinologist who disgnosed me) has never heard of my condition, so don’t be surprised if a MD you see doesn’t know much about weight and medical reasons for being overweight. Unfortunately, the medical profession knows a lot less about weight than one would hope.