Friday, March 26, 2010

Rant and Rave

Rant: a speech or text that does not present a well-researched and calm argument; rather, it is typically an attack on an idea, a person or an institution. Very often rants lack proven claims. Such attacks are usually personal attacks. In some cases, rants can be based on partial fact or may be entirely factual but written in a comedic/satirical form.

I believe I will be ranting today. My rant falls under the latter definition - based on partial fact or may be entirely factual but written in a comedic/satirical form. I doubt it will be that comedic or that there will be any joy found in this blog. But then again, perhaps there will be joy caught in the act of ranting! So if you aren't in the mood for my ranting and raving, I suggest you leave now. I am sure this blog will contain politically incorrect-speak, conspiracy theories and possibly swearing! I could also be boring...but I need to do this. So hold on if you're coming for the ride!

Like many of you, I am dealing with an elderly parent. My father will be 85 this July. His mind is clearer than mine (possibly not saying much, but you get my drift!), he lives alone, still does his own grocery shopping, bill paying, wood chopping - essentially, the guy is completely independent.

He had his first stroke at 54 and many years and several TIAs later, his health is held together with pills and a pacemaker and a thousand doctor's appointments each month. (A TIA is a transient ischemic attack. It is an episode in which a person has stroke-like symptoms for less than 24 hours, usually less than 1-2 hours. A TIA is often considered a warning sign that a true stroke may happen in the future if something is not done to prevent it.)

He has complained (although not alot) since the first stroke that his left side is compromised and that his hip pains him. For years he has told me that his doctor says he needs a hip replacement but he refuses to have one. (BTW - I am not welcome at his doctor appointments) Now he is falling way too often and the new story from my father is that the doctor says it's from his swelling ankle not his hip. Whattttttttt? Since WHEN???? After much arguing with him, I thought I won when he finally agreed to get the situation seriously checked out by a specialist.

Now, let me tell you about my mother. She passed away in 2007 at the age of 84. With the HUGE exception of an Alzheimer's diagnosis, this woman was never sick my whole life. That's where this story begins. She began to get a bit confused around the age of 76. But not so much that I didn't feel safe leaving my newborn with her. In fact, for 2 more years, I felt it was still safe. But it did progress a bit too far for that comfort once my second was born 2 1/2 years later. Still, in her defense, she was very clear most of the time.

Then she came down with a bad case of shingles and she experienced ALOT of pain for a long time. She was seeing a neurologist (aka Dr. Idiot) for both the Alzheimer's and the shingles and one day, because of her high level of pain, Dr. Idiot decided to double the dose of the pain-killer Neurontin he had her on. Essentially, my mother disappeared that day. Within hours, she didn't know almost anyone from our family. She was completely confused nearly all the time and Dr. Idiot INSISTED she continue this dose to counteract her pain. I became involved at this point and came to despise this man.

Not only did he have an abrasive, annoying manner about him, he could barely speak english. Now - I'm not one for profiling but for god's sake, you are an intelligent man from another country. You are a doctor. How is it that you can master medicine but you can't freaking master the english language??? It's beyond me.

And...AND... you see your patient fall into a state of complete dementia and it matters not one bit to you?? It was like she was some big science experiment that he had completely removed any emotion from. "We must treat the pain." "Well, non-english speaking Dr. Idiot, will her MIND come back after you are done treating her pain?" "One can not be sure" he replied. YOU'RE KIDDING, RIGHT????? You give my mother a drug that renders her mindless and helpless and you want her to continue on it????

Long story short? She never found her mind again and she died in a comatose-like existence 3 years later. Do I blame Dr. Idiot? Totally. I am intelligent enough to know that my mother had Alzheimer's and would eventually die, possibly from the disease itself, but I know first hand that her demise was hastened by this drug pusher. I know first hand that the quality of her life disappeared that day and that Dr. Idiot is responsible. His attitude about it disgusts me. The fact that he calls himself a doctor disgusts me even more and I ask, what of - to do no harm????

The ironic thing? My girlfriend Sue's mother had the exact same thing happen to her, not 3 months later! In her situation, it was a different illness and a different drug but this woman went from living totally independent with a completely clear mind to a psychotic being who tried to commit suicide in her hospital bed and was subsequently committed to a psych hospital. She died two months after the first dose stole her mind. I wonder how many times this happens to our elderly. The thought is mind boggling. Call it a conspiracy theory but this smacks of a cover-up.

So starts the rant. Big Pharma? You know - the paid representatives of large pharmaceutical and biomedicine companies in the United States who seek to influence federal government policy? You suck. With your money & power you are allowed to influence and promote legislation friendly to drug manufacturers at the expense of patients. Your direct advertising to physicians, free samples, and research stipends encourage doctors to overprescribe medications and you make me sick.

Dr. Idiot? How do you live with yourself? It makes me absolutely crazy that you are still "practicing" medicine? "Practice" is a perfect word to describe what you do. You experiment (aka practice) on your guinea pig patients. I'm sure that sometimes what you experiment with works, but god knows how many times you are mistaken. How ironic that you "practiced" on my mother and killed her mind. I bet you never thought twice about the incident and that you learned NOTHING. I predict that in that same exact situation, you would do it all over again hoping for a different result. I truly despise you.

So why am I telling you about all this? Remember when I told you earlier that I thought I had "won" my argument with my father regarding getting his falling situation checked out? Well, he went to his regular physician (BTW - another doctor I can NOT understand!!!!!!) who referred him to what my father explained to me as a "leg" doctor. A "leg" doctor? WTF is that? Is he an orthopedic guy? A vein guy? A swollen ankle guy? A hip specialist? I finally pressed my father for more information about this "leg" guy. Take one guess who it is.

I can barely say's GD Dr. IDIOT! I am SICK over it! How does a neurologist end up as the "leg" guy? I have no idea, but I am livid! I mean - I understand that he should be checked out in case the falling is neurologically based. But this a_ _hole? Aghhhhhhhhhhhhh - FML.

And to add insult to my injury, when I realized who my father had an appointment with on Monday, I reminded him who Dr. Idiot was. He proclaimed he wasn't going to go to him after what happened with my mother. Yay! I got through to him! But I also feared that he would just decide not to do anything, once again, just because it was too much work to re-schedule with someone else. (You know how stubborn our parents can be!)

But noooooo, it's worse. Now he has decided to go to his appointment with Dr. Idiot afterall, because "all the test results are going to him." God forbid our parents advocate for themselves! God forbid, he lets me advocate for him so I can get this idiot out of our lives.


So I apologize if I have bored you to death today. But truth be told? I'm feeling a bit of joy that I got this off my chest!

Rant - over and out.


  1. Earth to Joey - call the Idiot Dr. and tell him you will sue him if he touches your father. Tell him to refer your father's records to another physician with the proper qualifications.

    Rave- over and out.

  2. What's his name so I keep my family far away from him! I agree with Karen

  3. i spent the past year with parents and doctors. i hear you. it's my own weight-loss regime, aka stress!
    what karen said! he'll drop your dad in a second! hang in there!

  4. Karen point may seem extreme, but is probably appropriate at this point