Med­i­cal prob­lems should be dis­cussed with a physi­cian

North Penn Life - - OPINION -

Life can be­come an un­nec­es­sary fork in the road that can lead to an early death. If you go down the wrong side of the fork it might take you into a live- or- die sit­u­a­tion. Time be­comes an im­por­tant fac­tor when it is part of the de­ci­sion mak­ing.

If you de­velop a cough, back pain, pass blood in your urine or bowel move­ment, get dizzy or have some chest dis­com­fort, to name a few prob­lems that arise, you can choose a bot­tle with a smil­ing face on it at the drug­store.

The ad­ver­tise­ment on the prod­uct is so invit­ing it’s dif­fi­cult not to pur­chase the item. In truth, most over- the- counter items rec­om­mend the pur­chaser see a doc­tor in a few days if not bet­ter.

Here is where that fork in the road be­comes very im­por­tant. If symp­toms are con­tin­u­ing you must see a doc­tor. Un­for­tu­nately, you have had ap­prox­i­mately three days’ de­lay while you wait for that drug­store prod­uct to work. Then, af­ter three days you con­tact the doc­tor’s of­fice and find out that you can’t get an ap­point­ment for an­other week. vou have de­layed see­ing the doc­tor. In that time de­lay, your symp­toms have got­ten worse.

A bet­ter choice would have been to call to see the doc­tor as soon as pos­si­ble. The doc­tor’s of­fice de­cides if you should see the physi­cian. The doc­tor, and staff, will de­cide which medicine or tests are needed.

This takes the guess­work out of the de­ci­sion and usu­ally the doc­tor knows which medicine will work and how to use it. In the long run, see­ing the doc­tor might ac­tu­ally cost less than first try­ing an over- the- counter item. In sum­mary, un­less you’re hav­ing a mi­nor prob­lem, there can be ma­jor com­pli­ca­tions from self- med­i­cat­ing. It’s bet­ter to make an ap­point­ment with the doc­tor or at least to con­tact the physi- cian’s of­fice be­fore com­pli­ca­tions de­velop.

An­other med­i­cal prob­lem is what to do when deal­ing with a busy of­fice. It is al­ways wise to call the of­fice and ask for an ap­point­ment. Ask to dis­cuss the prob­lem with some­one from the of­fice staff but be ready to tell them about signs of in­fec­tion and, if the doc­tor is too busy, ask if they would con­tact a hos­pi­tal emer­gency room if you need to go to the hos­pi­tal.

It’s al­ways bet­ter if some­one from the doc­tor’s of­fice calls ahead when you are on your way to an emer­gency room.

Never watch and wait when you have a med­i­cal prob­lem. Men watch rec­tal bleed­ing and wait for it to stop. Some­times it stops but that does not mean the prob­lem went away. Many se­ri­ous med­i­cal prob­lems like rec­tal or uri­nary bleed­ing can seem to dis­ap­pear like a cold that gets bet­ter. Re­gard­less, see a doc­tor.

Women have a habit of feel­ing a lump in the breast and as­sum­ing it’s small and harm­less. Ev­ery­one, male or fe­male, should see a doc­tor, get ex­am­ined, and fol­low rec­om­men­da­tions.

Never as­sume a prob­lem went away be­cause the symp­toms dis­ap­peared. It must be checked even if you feel as good as you ever did. See­ing a doc­tor can add years to your life. Get that checkup, do not hide any­thing, plan to have a long wait in the of­fice. vour life may de­pend on it, and it does.

Health & Science Dr. Mil­ton Fried­man

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.