Our toxic environment and modern lifestyle are killing us from the inside out. Degenerative and near epidemic diseases such as obesity, arthritis, arteriosclerosis, Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis, premature aging, and iatrogenic (caused by the healer) disease have tragically become part of every American family. Yet, as technology advances, the wisdom of the ages that it was better to prevent than to treat disease.
Two doctors, three opinions are given, but the opinion that is the most important is YOURS, the patient. It is not the physician who will suffer the most if good therapies go en getting wrong, an adverse drug reaction occurs, or the operation was a success, but the patient died, but you and you family. You should be in charge of your health both preventively and therapeutically! A healing relationship with your physician is important and teamwork is key, but it should be you as the patient that is responsible for the path to take. The doctor is the knowledgeable coach or adviser, perhaps a family member, the team manager, but there is no doubt that if you are in your right mind that the decision of care should be yours! It is incumbent for you to be as knowledgeable as possible on the medical problem on hand. Information from the Internet, perhaps starting at Wikipedia, then a noncommercial website should be considered. Speaking to other patients with a similar problem, reading magazine articles or books does give a good working knowledge on your medical issue. Even getting another professional opinion from a physician who is not in cahoots with your original doc is a good idea.
Too often Primary Care Physicians function as gatekeepers; they may open the floodgates and let the patient drown in too many medical procedures and medicines. Fragmentation in medical care also is rampant today. The patient who decides what organ or area their problem lies in sees that specialist. Therefore, there is a cardiologist for their heart, a pulmonologist for their lungs, a nephrologist for their kidneys, a hematologist for their blood, and a “Big Toe doctor” for their gout. That leaves us with no one to take care of the whole person; moreover, the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. The gastroenterologist does not effectively communicate with the neurologist. If your primary care doc does not function as a knowledgeable clinical coordinator, then that responsibility by default is on you. As I try to set forth in this book, it is not how old a person is that counts, but how they feel and function when they are old. Medicine and certainly not this book alone has all the answers, but with your significant participation you will enable yourself to age gracefully and to live a full and abundant life. It is imperative then to discover THE DOCTOR WITHIN!