Saturday, July 30, 2011

To YOUR Health

As I write this blog post, I am sitting in Miami, Florida at a friend’s home totally enjoying my vacation. I’ve spent a week in the quiet of the remote town of Louisville, Georgia visiting my mother before making my way to Miami to visit friends and family. In both places I have had the absolute pleasure of reading multiple books uninterruptedly in the peace and quiet of each environment. In Louisville, there was absolutely no noise whatsoever and in Miami in the home that I am staying, the view and environment is breathtaking. As I was reading one of the ten books that I brought along with me in my bag of books, I came across something that I thought was worth sharing with The Critical Thinker readership.

It is sound advice found in Chapter 7 of OUTRAGE by authors Dick Morris and Eileen McGann. The chapter is entitled The New Drug Dealers: How Pharmaceutical Companies Are Dangerous to Our Health. A few years ago I read the book OUR DAILY MEDS by Melody Peterson and was fascinated by how the pharmaceutical industry works. Mr. Morris and Ms. McGann’s accounts in Chapter 7 of OUTRAGE support Ms. Peterson’s work and Ms. Peterson’s work in OUR DAILY MEDS supports the findings in OUTRAGE. I would highly recommend reading both books. The part I thought worth sharing is in a section at the end of the chapter called the “Action Agenda.” The action agenda reads as follows:

When you go for medical treatment for yourself or for any member of your family, you can take some simple steps to protect yourself.

  • Always ask your physician or surgeon if there is a generic drug that could be substituted for the prescription medication he or she is proposing. 
  • Ask if your doctor has any financial relationship with any drug company
  • Share with your doctor your opinion about these “relationships” to let him or her know that you disapprove of these frequently shady transactions. 
I could not agree more with Mr. Morris and Ms. McGann and encourage and strongly recommend that we all ask these questions when our doctors are prescribing medications that we may not need or that can be ultimately harmful to us not to mention the costs. Do not allow your doctor to bully you or make you feel as if you are a fool for asking questions. I had a general practitioner at one time who did just that when I explained my symptoms or asked questions about the medication he had prescribed for me; he would make me feel as if I were stupid for asking questions. What exacerbated the situation even more was the fact that I had such wonderful relationships with my optometrist and dentist. I could talk to them about anything that was going on with my eyes or teeth and they would fully answer my questions and concerns without making me feel like a fool. Ironically, I explained the issues I was having with my general practitioner to my optometrist and asked him for a recommendation for a general practitioner; he recommended an excellent doctor and I changed. I now have a great team of physicians who keep me on top of my physical game. No one knows your body or what you are feeling better than you, so do not allow your doctor to push you around and prescribe medication that is not working for you or that is having adverse side effects.

As always, something to critically think about and I welcome your commentary in the comment section of the blog as I bask in the Florida and Georgia sunshine. Until my next post.


Darrell M. said...

Spot on Marc, I would also recommend to readers that if you or someone you know is taking a multitude of medications, check with a pharmacist or other doctor regarding all the medication that you are taking; especially if you are seeing multiple doctors for multiple things. Many times doctors will prescribe a drug not knowing if you are taking other drugs and many times will prescribe even if they know.

Enjoy your vacation Marc.

Julie H. said...

Very true, I notice with us as islanders we tend to take the doctor's words for gospel and ignore what our bodies are telling us. Ignorance isn't bliss; ask questions and don't leave the office unsettled in yourself.