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Laura B

What A Quack!

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Well, I reported a few days ago that I was recently diagnosed with Scleroderma (received the news by email, no less). I went in today for my follow-up. I will NOT be going to for a third visit! :angry:


He told me that while everything pointed towards Sclero, I couldn't possibly be in as much pain as I described to him. (How does HE know what I feel??) He said that while this is a "progressive illness", all he was willing to do for me was to rx steroids, and that I could expect some nasty side effects from that.


His suggestion was that I "learn to live with the pain" and if I can't do that, "perhaps I should seek the help of a psychiatrist to learn to suffer with the pain". What? He claims that he isn't willing to turn me into a zombie or drug-addict (not what I was looking for either). So I said, "Basically what you are telling me is that you are unable or unwilling to treat me then?" He just reiterated that I seek the help of a shrink.


At that point I got up and told him that the discussion was over, and I'd look elsewhere for help. I walked past his receptionist as she was yelling that I "forgot to pay my co-pay". I looked at her and said, "No, I did not forget!"


Has anyone else been treated like you are crazy by your Rheumatologist? Was I wrong to walk out on him? He told me that I was lucky to be receiving the one pain pill I get now, and talked down to me like I was a piece of "poo" on the bottom of his shoe! I've never been treated like that by any doctor before! I was absolutely flabbergasted!


Oh well...back to the ol' drawing board I guess.


Disappointed in Atlanta...



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I'm sorry you had such a rotten experience with your rheumatologist! Living in a large city, I'm sure you'll have no problem finding another rheumatologist who will listen to you and treat you with kindness and understanding. Based upon your experience, I would file a formal letter of complaint with this doctor's medical group or associated hospital detailing your visit. Don't give up!



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Good for you Laura!!!!!!!!


Not a quack but a Jack!!!!


How insensitive and rude can a person be? Let alone your doctor.


You did the right thing.


However, be careful about the co-pay. All they have to do is send the bill to a collection agency and that can ruin your credit. It's so unfair. Just be careful a 20$ point of emphasis might cost you thousands for a mortgage or car.


Time to find a new DR.


Look at the bright side.... IF that guy didn't reveal how big a fool he is until later it might have cost you with something bigger.


But I love your response...."this appointment is over!!" Great :)


Michael in Florida

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I am so sorry that you had such a bad rheumatologist appointment. I can certainly understand why you have no intention of going back. If all he can do for you is "prescribe steroids", then he doesn't know enough about scleroderma to be treating you. Corticosteroids can lead to renal failure! Also, how can anyone question another person's pain level?


I couldn't find a scleroderma specialist in Atlanta but by searching through this site I did find a list of Rheumatologist in Atlanta. Maybe you could search each individually and see if you could find one that specializes or has special interest in connective tissue disease. It's definitely time to start looking for someone new.


Hope you find someone soon!


Big Hugs to you,

Janey Willis

ISN Support Specialist

(Retired) ISN Assistant Webmaster

(Retired) ISN News Director

(Retired) ISN Technical Writer for Training Manuals

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Was this quack a rheumatologist? I'm glad you walked out and hope you find someone qualified to treat scleroderma.




Mary in Texas

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Your email made the hair on my neck go up! I am so sorry that you had to endure that kind of treatment from one who took and oath no less. Your response was brilliant. Wish I had that kind of backbone!


There are better doctors out there who understand living with pain and know something about this scleroderma thing.


Sending you a big hug for standing up for all us little guys!

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