No, actually, I'm *not* fine, you quack.

So I’m lying in bed, trying to nap before my queer line shift. I’m trying to get to sleep but it’s not working. I feel like I’m on a coffee buzz (i’m weak and sick and my heart is racing). But hmm, the last time I drank coffee was five hours before and the last time I took my sudafed was four hours before that.

I get worried, and I call Info-Santé. The nice lady asks for my symptoms, which I explain to her, and then she has me count my pulse while she times me. It’s like 28 or something in 15 seconds, which is like 112/min. (This is after lying in bed for three quarters of an hour, mind you.)She goes oh my god and tells me to head down to the local clinic pronto.

I do so and check in, then cool my heels for an hour until the doctor can see me. By then it’s, oh, 80 or so. Still rather high for me. Anyway, he takes my pulse and blood pressure. Doesn’t ask for any medical history (it might have interested him to know that I’m getting over the grippe and my fever broke this afternoon.) He just keeps going “your pulse and blood pressure are normal” at me like I’m a dummy, four or five times, then shoves me out the door.

Now I know doctors are great and noble souls, and I have nothing but respect for the medical profession, having been given birth by an MD myself. But I don’t take kindly to being told there’s nothing wrong with you in a tone of voice that suggests I’m a moron.

Look, putz, there may well be nothing wrong with me (forget the fact that I’m so weak I could barely sit up out there in your waiting room) but obviously I thought there was, or I wouldn’t have come to the clinic and wasted your valuable time, okay?

And maybe it would be a good idea to take my medical history, especially considering you’ve never seen me before.

Jeez. Way to inspire patient confidence, doc. Good thing it’s my mom who’s teaching family practice and not you.

I know what you mean. About a month ago, I started coughing one Monday afternoon. By the time I got home, I was sure I was coming down with a cold. I had some soup, took some Robitussin, and went to bed. At 1:30 I woke up, having trouble breathing. Hubby woke up as well, and commented that I was “like a furnace.” This was odd indeed, as I am usually freezing (my normal body temp when I’m healthy hovers around 97.5-98.0 F). He took my temperature. It was 101.5. Okay, I take some Tylenol and more Robitussin and go back to sleep. At 5:00 I woke up. My temp was up to 103, and I still couldn’t breathe. After calling the doctor, hubby takes me to the ER.
The doc seems to not be concerned about the trouble breathing, as I have asthma. Never mind that my asthma only hits me in the summer, and it’s never that bad. He finally consents to have me take an X-ray. He sees no problem with it, but gives me some anti-biotics, I think more or less to humor me.
I went home, parked myself in front of the TV, and proceeded to be miserable. I was in pain, and I was sweating bullets. The doctor called about two hours later. He said he had double-checked my X-ray, and there was a bunch of fluid in my right lung. It was pneumonia. He even called back later that day (while I was asleep) and informed my husband that if I was still having trouble breathing when I woke up, then I needed to be admitted to the hospital. Thankfully, I was breathing better that afternoon, and the fever (finally) broke the next morning.

Sometimes I hate doctors.

Oops! I forgot to say: I hope you feel better soon! :slight_smile:

Well, what do you expect from socialized medicine? You get what you pay for (actually, I’m sure you probably pay a lot in taxes, but you know what I mean). Sure it was free, but it was useless advice tossed off in the most casual and lazy way possible.

Now, in America (drum roll, trumpets blare, etc.), you could have had the best, most highly scrutinized useless advice in the world (assuming that you really are ok; I mean, you’re not dead or anything, right?). Of course, it woulda cost you. . .

Unless you factor in insurance, then everything’s cool.

– Jer

(And, of course, hope you feel better.)

As opposed to what I get from my ordinary doctor (who works in Canada under the socialized medicine system.) And what my mother’s patients patients get from her (who works in Canada under the socialized medicine system.) And what my parents’ friend Yoanna’s patients get from her (who works in Canada under the socialized medicine system.)

Bzzt! Wrong answer, thanks for playing.

I’m not sure what to say. This rarely stops me.

On one hand, the doctor is obliged to take a good history. He should have enquired about your symptoms, and he should have learned you had the grippe and believed you if you had the chance to say you had a fever earlier.

On the other hand, what are you really worried about here? People get VERY hung up on numbers… they think “A normal heart rate should be 60 to 100… Oh my God! I’m 120! Que pasa?”, and get excited, and watch their heart rate and blood pressure climb higher.

One heart rate measurement or blood pressure measurement is not very helpful. “Normal” values are derived from two standard deviations of a population curve, hence millions of people are naturally and uselessly labelled as too low or high with no symptoms just due to luck.

I doubt the heart rate meant anything and your doctor clearly didn’t feel it was anything serious. And was probably right. But seems based on your side of the story to have communicated poorly and failed to take a proper history. The doctor probably has this sort of thing happen pretty often and is letting frustration get in the way of good medical practice.

Many Canadians with similar symptoms would go to an emergency room which is a tremendous waste of resources. Did you go to a walk-in clinic? If this was a doctor you’ve been seeing for many years, you should have had better treatment. And this has NOTHING to do with the Canadian health care system versus the U.S. – are you suggesting doctors in the U.S. are never brusque, always communicate well and are nevery egotistical?

Heart rate should be measured for a full minute to get a proper reading, whatever the Info-Sante nurse told you, if you are monitoring it for sinus tachycardia. You have nothing to worry about if your rhythm was regular; and if it wasn’t the doctor probably wouldn’t have done anything different anyway. If it persists, and I mean over several days and measurements, and high with activity, consider getting a thyroid test, EKG, etc. if you are really that concerned. And if the doctor isn’t concerned, you probably don’t need to be either if a decent history is taken.

Thanks, Dr. P. For the record, note that it wasn’t me harshing on medicare (God and Svend Robinson forbid!!), but VarlosZ. And yes, I did go to a walk-in clinic.

Also, if it had just been fast I wouldn’t have noticed it probably, but it was speed + irregularity + feeling sick + not being able to sleep despite being way tired + it sounded weird (squish squish instead of thump thump) that freaked me out.

Of course, none of this interested Doc Sprinklypops there.

My husband has high blood pressure and had been in the hospital once for a pressure of 230 over 120. His doctor prescribed some medication and sent him home. He started developing a problem with his heart rate. It would suddenly race and beat irregularly. He would then be wasted for the rest of the evening. It was coming more and more often. When he told his doctor, this quack kept saying, “We’ll keep an eye on that.” When I changed jobs, my insurance changed and I was finally able to get my husband to change doctors (his was unavailable the week my hubby needed to see him). When he told his new doctor, the doctor immediately sent him for a slew of tests, including a 24-hour monitor. Thankfully, he did have an episode while wearing the monitor (his hearbeat went from like 80 to 220!) The doctor told him that of the two pills my hubby was prescribed by the other doctor, neither was for high blood pressure or a diuretic and both had as possible side effects causing a racing heart (they weren’t the primary cause but contributed). When he got his tests results back, the doctor put my hubby in the hospital to monitor him closely while he changed his pills, taking him off both of the previous medications.

My husband feels much better now, but because of his previous doctor, he could have easily wound up dead during one of his episodes. I’m in the USA and you don’t have to have socialized medicine to have crappy doctors! (HMOs can help, though.)

Am I the only one who thninks matt just got “whooooshed” by Varlos? I mean, "Now, in America . . . you could have had the best, most highly scrutinized useless advice in the world . . . " – that was funny, right?

Hope you are feeling better…

I sympathize with your OP, in a big way. The last doctor that patted me on the head got fired.

I’m passing blood, a very abnormal thing for this particular body. This dweeb pats me on the head, says “your too young for anything to be wrong with you, eat more fiber.”

Two weeks later, I can’t stand, and certainly can’t process anything that looks like food. Jello hurts. I went back, and was told “you are fine” once more. Fired that guy. :rolleyes:

It turned out to be something allright, and thankfully the next Doc I saw recognized it and helped me.

You’re not the only one.

In all fairness, matt_mcl is sick; maybe his vision is a little blurry and he didn’t recognize the sarcasm; the “(drum roll, trumpets blare, etc.)”, however, were a pretty big tip-off.

Well, shame on you for taking advantage of a sick person like that! :mad::wink:

Phew. Glad most people got it. For a second there, I was afraid I was gonna have to start using smileys (shudder).

And, for once, it’s good to be the “whoooosher” as opposed to the “whooooshee.”

[Walks off giggling like a schoolgirl and saying “whooooshee” over and over.]