What type of doctor is your Primary/GP

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Zanne
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Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 6/11/2009 10:07 AM (GMT -7)   
I have to pick a new primary care doctor and am interested in what type of doctor everyone has. My current doctor is an internist who actually specialized in GI. He started out as my GI and as his practice grew he backed off on his GI stuff and farmed me out to another GI for my CD but continued as my GP. Now he is joining MDVIP and since I have decided not to pay the annual $1500 fee on top of my insurance I will need to find a new primary care doctor. I have had this doctor for most of my adult life and in my searching my insurance data base I see that I have a choice of a family doctor, general practice or internist. Can anyone give me some advice as to which way I should go, or does it really matter since most of my medical issues are CD related.
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


xraygrrl
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2004
Total Posts : 102
   Posted 6/11/2009 11:21 AM (GMT -7)   
Mine is an internist but I barely go for her for anything anymore besides a physical. She doesn't seem to be real up on Crohns related issues. I was having problems with my eyes & when I saw her about it, I mentioned that sometimes Crohns people have eye problems. She took a look & said I was fine. I self-referred to an ophthalmologist a week later & had uveitis. I asked my PCP about seeing a rheumy when I was on Humira, she said it was probably arthritis & I was fine. I self-referred to a rheumy & was dx'd with the beginnings of lupus. I was thinking of joining an MDVIP but it's so dang expensive! It sounds great, though.

MikeB
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1169
   Posted 6/11/2009 11:30 AM (GMT -7)   
Traditionally an internist is the best primary care doctor, though there are a lot of fine family practice docs (what they used to call a GP.) However, keep in mind that all gastroenterologists complete a full three-year internal medicine residency before beginning their GI fellowship, and many will also serve as a primary care doc for Crohns patients, referring them to other specialists like ob/gyn or urologists just as your internist or family physician would.

GDen
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Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 703
   Posted 6/11/2009 11:44 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm in the same boat--looking for a good family doc/GP/PCP. I'm still figuring out what internists (internal medicine doctors) are, but it seems like they're more concerned with chronic conditions rather than general all-around health.

I'm curious if anybody has a preference of MD vs. DO.

Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 6/11/2009 11:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Mine is an internist also and I love him to death. I see him every 6 mos and my GI every 3 mos.
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Anxiety/Panic Forum
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 33 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, and Calcium and Xanax as needed. Resections in 2002 and 2005. Also diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Osteoarthritis and Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission.
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Zanne
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Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 6/11/2009 12:03 PM (GMT -7)   
I see 2 GI's, a Rhuemy, an Eye Doctor, a GYN, a Neuro, an Endo, a Pediatrist, and a Derm. But my GP still is the one who writes most of my scripts and handles all of my referrals, so I really need to have someone who understands what is going on and can get things done. Plus I need to get in to see who ever before this switch is made or I will be left up the proverbial creek, so I have a few weeks to make an appointment then another few weeks to get things moved over. I know my insurance will just tell me I can pick anyone and change if I don't like them, but that really won't work for me, cause I'm a control freak!!!
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


MikeB
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1169
   Posted 6/11/2009 12:15 PM (GMT -7)   
GDen an internist is someone who completed a three-year residency in general medical care, called internal medicine. They are probably the most completely and broadly trained doctors for primary care. Most of the non-surgical specialties (cardiologists, GIs, oncologists, etc.) spin out of internal medicine. They are essentially trained as internists to treat everything that is not surgical or that does not require elaborate invasive tests like colonoscopies or cardiac catherizations. Their training is very heavily focused on diagnosing illness and they treat the full spectrum of patients, not just the chronically ill. The traditional rule of thumb is to get a good internist and have him diagnose you and then refer you for anything that is not within his specialty area, like surgery. As for MD vs DO, these days the basic medical training they receive is pretty similar, but my personal taste would be for a more classically trained MD. If nothing else I would imagine the admission standards for MDs to get into med school are a bit higher.

GDen
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 703
   Posted 6/11/2009 12:41 PM (GMT -7)   
MikeB--thanks for the info, much appreciated.

Reading up on MDs vs. DOs, that's been my impression as well, that they're pretty similar though standards for MDs are a bit more rigorous. However, a couple of nurses have told me that they prefer DOs because they consider them more "holistic" in preventing diseases rather than just treating symptoms. I'm not sure what to make of the "Osteopathic manipulative medicine"--seems kind of like chiropractic techniques, except for the entire body.

Jen77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2691
   Posted 6/11/2009 12:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Mine is also an internist. He completely rocks, and I see him for my Crohn's issues more then I ever saw my GI when I had one. My GI was all about just my guts, not about the other effects of Crohn's. Where my GP gets all the effects and actually understands! Even then where my GI doc didn't get why I would need Questran, my GP understood and saw how it gives me some freedom! Awesome man!
~Jennifer
 
Diagnosed with Crohn's Disease 2/06, and Health Anxiety/OCD 12/08 Taking Asacol, Questran, Toprol XL, and Lexapro.


Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 6/11/2009 12:50 PM (GMT -7)   
My Grandfather was an Osteopath and I was brought up to basically believe that chiropractors were quacks. Somethings are hard to get over. I'm sure the training is a lot more rigorous now, but I think I will stick with someone who can use the full spectrum of the medical arsenal.
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


GDen
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 703
   Posted 6/12/2009 11:41 AM (GMT -7)   
Anybody know of any good web sites that rate doctors and/or have customer ratings/comments? For lawyers a good similar site is MartinDale.com, but I haven't really found one for doctors. Searching Google Maps turns up a few reviews for some of the doctors. My state's Dept. of Regulatory Agencies also has an online database of doctors that shows their details.

CrohnieToo
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 9448
   Posted 6/12/2009 6:47 PM (GMT -7)   
In the past I've always favored osteopaths - but any more they are pretty much just MDs w/a DO after their name. Most seem to abandon manipulation once they get into practice. At least in our area. The best GP I ever had, and had him for years, was a DO. The dirty bird had the audacity to die on me! You have my sympathies having to "doctor shop" today. I was spoiled by him for years and I'm not the easiest patient for doctors to work with between having him so many years and having so much experience w/Mayo Clinic in MN between family and myself.

The only internist I ever saw, when doctor shopping after my DO GPs death, was one of the two worst doctors I ever encountered. I went to him for my Crohn's, this was back in the late 70's. He wanted to do a bone marrow. For Crohn's?? I asked him why. He told me it wasn't necessary for me to know, I was "just" the patient, it was sufficient that, he, the doctor wanted to do one. Needless to say we parted company on less than friendly terms.

I was fortunate to find a good GP again, an MD this time as it turned out. But SHE had the audacity to die on me! This was in the late 90's. There'd been a lot of changes in medicine in the intervening 20 years that I hadn't been exposed to!!! Doctor shopping was an even more "interesting" and difficult experience this time around. It was this doctor shopping go round when I needed a pulmonologist but still hadn't found a GP that I encountered the other of the two worst doctors I've ever encountered! He was a pulmonologist.

I was fortunate though. I did find a good family practitioner and we make a good team. Other than this began my experience w/specialists which up until then I pretty much had had no experience w/other than at Mayo. But he's made some darn good referrals!!! An outstanding Endocrinologist, an tremendous Ob/Gyn (both wasted as specialists they would make such GREAT family doctors!!). I make sure that my GP is provided w/results of EVERYTHING, every test, every procedure, etc. that the specialists order. I even usually have him write my specialists' script renewals. I found my gastro on my own before I found him.


Some people are like Slinkies... Not really good for anything, but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down a flight of stairs.

Post Edited (CrohnieToo) : 6/12/2009 7:50:45 PM (GMT-6)


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 6/13/2009 7:49 AM (GMT -7)   
Zanne just a tip, when looking for a new family doc, ask the nurses who they recommend. I was looking for a new family doc, and saw a jerk and left crying, so I asked the nurses who they recommended (they work with them afterall) and all of them recommended my current doc, so I went with their suggestion and never looked back:) Good luck on your search!
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease and Anxiety/Panic Forum
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 33 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, and Calcium and Xanax as needed. Resections in 2002 and 2005. Also diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Osteoarthritis and Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission.
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

GDen
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 703
   Posted 6/14/2009 12:01 PM (GMT -7)   
Here's a non-PC, ageist question! ;) How about doctor preference based on age? Do you prefer younger, middle-aged, or older doctors?

At one local support group, several of the patients complained about some of the older doctors at a GI clinic. They said they seemed to lack compassion, willingness to listen, patience, openness to new treatments, etc. I have to say that I could probably make the same generalization based on my own experience. My GI docs are in their 30's and are very patient, helpful, forthcoming with info, etc. A couple much older docs I encountered were downright rude and acted like all they wanted to do was punch their card and get paid. On the flip-side, I've encountered some younger doctors who seemed brash and impatient, and some older doctors who were great. Another plus for younger doctors is that they'll be around longer. I imagine doctors do sometimes reach a burnout point after so many years in practice, and also maybe they tend to want to stick to the tried-and-true rather than keep an open mind to new developing treatments.

petittarte
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 686
   Posted 6/14/2009 12:37 PM (GMT -7)   
I don't have a primary care doc per say. I don't need it with my insurance. I have an internist who is also a pulmonologist. I just go to him when I get sick and my hubby goes for his physical.

I prefer a younger doctor and not that it should matter but you need a degree from a US medical school.
Jodi

Remicade and 6MP


janicea
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 350
   Posted 6/14/2009 4:18 PM (GMT -7)   
I've got a youngish (32) male DO, sharp as a tack. I totally rely on him. When he sees me, he can actually remember exactly what my pyoderma looked like healingwise the month before (I go about monthly) and that amazes me. Youth has its advantages LOL.
strictures, crohn's, adhesions, endo. fighting Pyoderma Gangrenosum.
Trying LDN 3.5mg nightly ~ because I'm allergic to pentasa and 5ASA's I'm taking Boswellia Serrata. SCD yogurt. Using silver sulfadiazine on Pyoderma . B-12 shots. Juicing veggies!


sjkly
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 2113
   Posted 6/14/2009 7:51 PM (GMT -7)   
I know you asked about GPs but the post about age made me want to respond.
My Rhuematologist is probably in her mid to late 40's she has been practicing for longer then I have been sick.
There are two new doctors in her office-one of them is a puppy. They are both rhuematologists so not fresh out of med school but still squeeky.
 
During my last appointment with my wonderful Rhuemy the new kid knocked on the door of the exam room and asked my doc for a consult-she excused herself went into the next exam room with this kid and diagnosed his patient and ordered the labs for him.
 
Uhm..I will take a little, knowledge, skill and ability along with some actual experience over the youth anyday.

Jordan59
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 39
   Posted 6/15/2009 6:24 AM (GMT -7)   
I see a GI for my CD, but my primary care doctor is an MD/DO. He's the first doctor that actuallly would talk to me about the various medications I'm on, how they might interact, and discuss options. I have a variety of ailments and also see a psychiatrist for general anxiety, so I get comfort in being able to talk to the MD/DO to discuss what the other docs are prescribing. Asking nurses is a great idea.
Cub Fan over 30 years.  CD for over 30 years.  Connection? 

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