Daniel, I give every doctor one good shot. I was raised during the era where a doc’s word was handed down from the Almighty.

Since then I have been sorely disappointed, which I believe strongly is part of our education that our bodies and our health are OURS to manage. A doctor is nothing more than a wayfarer on our journey who has something to offer. Sometimes it’s pretty important. The best I’ve worked with begin with a modicum of humility:” I don’t know yet what might be wrong.” Bingo. A wise doctor indeed.

However, given that in our anxiety-riddled society, so many illnesses and symptoms are driven far more often by mental pain than an injury or disease, doctors are even more woefully unprepared. My PT once said that he treats the patient, not the MRI, which is why I lean on him harder than I do the ortho surgeon, whose only reference point is to cut.

The other piece is how grotesquely little the average doc knows about nutrition. Perhaps 19 hours at best. Given the twin offenses of bad food and anxiety, add to that bad habits, then we make ourselves sick, as do far too many doctors themselves, and we have a perfect storm. They may be educated yes, but to your point, most are so far behind the curve of recent research that they can never keep up. It’s the way of the world.

The problem, Daniel, is that when you or I walk into their offices with that new research in hand, and said doc is threatened, deeply offended and in high denial that what s/he knows might possibly be badly outdated, then that is where we end up with some twelve million misdiagnoses per year in the US.

It’s MY body. MY life. If I am going to see a doc for care, I need that doc to be humbled enough by what he doesn’t know to learn along with me. If not, then he is dangerous to my health. And that has happened far more times than I would like to guess, like the arrogant POS surgeon who called me “hysterical” when I told him I had a bleeding dysplasia, which I had not only researched but gone to a clinic to get the labs and prove it. I nearly bled to death on his operating table. That was the beginning of the end for me with doctors. His badly outdated statement was that women aren’t hemophiliacs. Um, yes we are. Rare, but we are. That belligerent ignorance and the arrogance of his righteousness nearly cost me my life. Since then I question everyone and everything for damned. Good. Reason.

Are there good docs? Of course. Are there low brow shysters? Of course. Bottom line, the American medical system does not reward our docs for prevention. They rarely live a healthy life themselves for many reasons not of always of their doing. However if a fat, smoking, clearly-ill doctor waddles into my exam room and has the unmitigated GALL to talk to me about health, he and I have a problem. What he has is data. Data is not necessarily information. Information is not necessarily knowledge. And by extension, knowledge sure as hell isn’t necessarily wisdom. Wisdom is the purview of the practitioner. Our health care system is not peopled with practitioners. It is far too widely peopled with folks full of data that has all too often been outstripped by more recent research.

I don’t disagree with your point. However, it is more multifacted than that. Thanks for your comment.

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Horizon Huntress, prize-winning author, adventure traveler, boundary-pusher, wilder, veteran, aging vibrantly. I own my sh*t. Let’s play!

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