It’s Okay to Get a Second Opinion (Part Two)

Read part one here.

I didn’t like the idea of getting a second opinion. I had already had two unpleasant run-ins with two separate GI doctors. Did I really want to put myself through more? Dave assured me, however, that the clinic he and his parents found was very reputable and it’s worth at least trying.

Because I still wasn’t feeling well and my doctor didn’t seem very interested in helping me, I decided to bite the bullet. I called to make the appointment.

Hi, my name is Amber. I have ulcerative colitis and I’d like to make an appointment with Dr. So-and-So*.

Second Opinion

Dr. So-and-so isn’t available for a few months, but we also have Dr. Younger Guy* available tomorrow,” the receptionist replied, “He’s very good and patients love him.

Ok, that sounds fine.” I said reluctantly. Already, I was feeling uneasy. Of course the guy I wanted isn’t available! Great!

The next day, Dave and I drove out to my appointment together. Neither of us knew what to expect, but it was so comforting knowing Dave was so supportive. He’s always been that way.

They called us back to the examination room and Dr. Younger Guy* came in. I explained the situation to him. Told him that my other doctor wasn’t being very helpful and that I was still having problems. He was very knowledgeable about IBD in general and explained that it sounded like I might have a case of C. Diff and ordered some stool samples be taken (GREAT! I’ve been down that road before and it was extremely unpleasant.).

Dr. Younger Guy also said, “I’m also going to prescribe you some enemas.

I groaned.

I know they don’t sound pleasant, but believe me… I have a lot of patients come back and hug my neck later! They work!” He assured me.

Then he took a deep breath and said, “Look, ulcerative colitis is vicious… and there is a really good surgical option for you…”

Uh…

Now, hear me out! You’re young. You have your whole life ahead of you. Surgery works really well for most IBD patients. They can create what is called a J-Pouch. Most patients end up not having to be on any medications at all afterwards.”

I don’t know if I like that…” I said.

At least think about it.

Already I was annoyed with Dr. Younger Guy*. Stool samples, enemas and now surgery? This is all very unpleasant sounding… what are you going to do next? Make me have another colonoscopy???

Thankfully, he didn’t. Dave and I left that day with more hope. After all, Mr. Younger Guy* seemed more knowledgable than my previous experiences. I got my prescription enemas filled and began using them that night. They were unpleasant, but not as bad as expected.

About a week later, it was discovered that I did in fact have C. Diff, so I was put on some antibiotics. Soon, I was able to achieve remission… all thanks to Dr. Younger Guy*.

A lot of patients are hesitant to get a second opinion. Most of them are afraid of challenging their doctors. I say, DO IT. This is your health and you have to learn to be your own advocate. After my experience, I would definitely highly recommend doing it. And if your current doctor has a problem with it, then he isn’t truly concerned about your well being. He’s more concerned about the dollars… and I know this because I actually had this confirmed by another GI specialist.

Get a second opinion! You might be surprised at the results it yields!

*Names removed for privacy

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