Another Doctors Appointment Cancelled Without Explanation.

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by joeb7th, Apr 17, 2008.

  1. joeb7th

    joeb7th New Member

    2 months ago I called my inurance company nurse hotline to ask for some advice in continuing my care. I have been sick for 2 years and I live in a realtively small town area with some specialities having only one doctor.

    As many of you can truly understand, I have had more than one doctor here throw up his or her hands and say they either can't do anymore for me or conclude that I am an instant attention seeking, hypochondriac / psych case that simply needs a psychiatrist more ( for the first time in my life ) than a physical speciality one.

    And I have dutifully fulfilled this different avenue advice as well with a diagnosis of Post Traumatic Stress but nothing else that would suggest psychiatric exaggerations of my physical symptoms.

    This is after 54 years of a same home town medical history of seeing a doctor maybe once every two years and these visits being mostly for minor ailments or check ups. ( wasn't even a pill guy. )

    Even though these same docs have found 15 different pain or nerve or body stressing and weakening physical maladies and confirmed them ... the fact that I keep seeking answers to how these all came about so instantly or how they simply progressed 50 or 100% of their pre-existing state in just a few months time...just makes them get angry and eventually they will bluntly tell you they don't want to be your doctor anymore.

    So I called this SO CAL nurse and was told to see an immunologist.

    I was given some names and started calling.

    One immunologist/rheumoltologist doctors office in Palo Alto CA eventually got me set up for a first time consult.

    I called the other day and was even given an appointment time. The last question asked me was a seemingly casual " what is it you want to be seen for?"

    As so many of you know...that question is a very very tough one for people like us with so many horrible yet hard to describe symptoms to answer. I did my best and then the appointment secretry stopped me and asked me to hold. He was gone for maybe 3 to 5 mintues and came back on and said. " Uh, Mr. B----, I am sorry, it looks like you may not have an appointment after all."


    I was transfered to a nurse voice mail that I refused to respond to as I felt it was reasonable to have a live person answering the reasonable question as to how I could go from having an appointment time to having no appointment in 5 minutes time.

    I was full of reasonable questions.

    Was it something I said in my description of my reason for wanting to be seen?

    I never got a call back ( they had my number )

    However, today my "referring" doctor's assistant called ( the doctor who sent my referral to this new one in Palo Alto ( again no doctor will actually speak to you ) and she told me this nerw doctors office called and said they didn't think they would be able to help me.

    I get no direct call for anyone...but I keep being turned down for doctors...even these first time visits.

    I called this doctor David Fishcer's office in Palo Alto back and finally got to speak with his nurse who was instantly condescending and telling me they didn't have to tell me anything. That calling the other doctor was all they were obligated to do.

    My only answer and question to this nurse was this...." I need to know "why" certain doctors in their certain specialities keep turning me down. I am the least informed person in finding out this answer. I need to know this to avoid constantly calling the wrong doctors and wasting their time and mine.

    What is it in my malady description that triggered your rejection? Again, I only ask this to know what it is I am saying that is turning off certain specialty doctors.

    She just said it was the doctors decision.

    Where the heck am I supposed to turn to for medical help if I keep getting secret turndowns without explanations?

    I went from having an appointment to not having one in 5 minutes time due to a conversation with this initial phone answerer and his secret one with apparently this nurse.

    I am posting this because I think it is important to know how people like us with admittedly difficult medical problem cases are treated. If we don't report these unexplained cancellations and other secret and hard to figure rejection responses from doctors...they just get tolerated...which they shouldn't.

  2. Cinlou

    Cinlou New Member


    I am just as confused as you...why would they do that?? They owe you an and report this doctor and receptionist, nurse or whomever..... to your insurance company....I am so sorry.....
    [This Message was Edited on 04/17/2008]
  3. findmind

    findmind New Member

    Well, it's pretty clear to me: they don't have any answers to our questions, so they don't want to see us.

    Dear one, I think you are too smart for them, and they resent it.

    Is there anything you can do on your own that helps you feel better? If drs refuse to take us seriously (a fact, lo, all these many years), we really have to take ourselves in hand and do what we can to feel better.

    There really IS no "answer", you know... unless you want to wait for the Whittemore Center in Nevada to open; they may find some answers for you.

    Best to you, pal...
  4. spacee

    spacee Member

    Most docs do not like dealing with sick patients. He gets lots of CFS referrals because of it. He said that in medical school you could tell the people who were going to go into specialties cause they didn't like the patients.

    I am so sorry for you. It has been such a nightmare for you.


  5. padre

    padre New Member

    It sounds like you live in California. You would help us all by informing the State of California Medical licensing board of your treatment (or lack of same). The place to report it is:

    They should get an answer for you.
    [This Message was Edited on 04/17/2008]
  6. joeb7th

    joeb7th New Member

    I accessed the medical board complaint page and saved it. If I don't get an apology in a week I will file one.

    I just hope you can all understand what it's like to get a physicians name from your insurance company. Then to call them and patiently and politely and respectfully answer every question of theirs and to follow through on their every instruction to be seen and to set up an appointment... and then without any direct notification, contact or any explanation...they cancel your first appointment very close to the appointment time and day that had been set earlier.

    I spent two months setting this first appointment up. I made long distance phone calls, patiently waited on hold, and answered every question as thoroughly as I could.

    I made another appointment with a another doctor I have here to get a referral. I filled out forms in her office for a transfer of records. I waited 2 months to the day I was supposed to call and did. I agreed calmly and appreciatively to the first appointment time.

    Then, everything is just cancelled.

    This nurse today said she didn't get back to me because " I " didn't leave a message on "her" voice mail machine when I first learned of the cancellation two days ago.???

    She told me today however that she had the whole story from the medical assistant that first made my appointment then cancelled it. That she was the one that had him transfer the call to her that day but she was too busy with other patients to answer it.

    When I explained that I felt the least I deserved was to speak to a live person after 2 months of work and effort she brushed this off and changed the subject.

    She then said that this Dr. David Fischer recommends that I see a neurologist. I said " really" " why would he do that?"

    But again she said he didn't have to tell me. If he had told me that in person or even this nurse in a much more personal and direct call to me...I could have told him that I have seen 2 neurologists in the last 2 years and one said he didn't see how he could help me and the other said I should see a rheumotologist! That is the specialty of this doctor that just cancelled on me and wants me to go back to a neuro !

    You see how this back door, third party communication with the patient doesn't work? I am being sent in circles back and forth to the same specialists who then send me back to others?

    This is why I feel that my patients bill of rights should be honored here.

    I am not mad that a doctor decided he didn't want to see problem is the way they do this in secret. Keeping the main suffering patient in the dark and not making themselves available to explain why they are turning me down in the first place.

    And this purposeful uncommunication truly hurts the care of the patient. Especially when they let the patient like me do all this work ahead of time and they make a last minute cancellation decision on the spur of the moment months later. This has happened to me at least 6 times in the last year and a half.

    And don't I have a right to seek a second opinion? Am I being turned down just because of this? I have seen "one" rheumotolist in my would be nice to see another one for just one more view. Especially one who also claims the specialty title of "Immunologist" which is what my insurance company nurse advised me to see.

  7. doxygirl

    doxygirl New Member

    It would seem to me that you need to complain to your ins co? or am I not reading correctly?

    Iam sorry that you are dealing with this nonsense!

    I can tell you that you are not alone .......I finally got so sick and tired of all the people in the medical field that just do not care....

    that I took matters into my own hands!

    I now see a DR who is independent of ins companies....and I have never been happier!

    I pay cash to see him and it is worth every single cent!

    Of course I cannot afford to have tests I would have to use my ins for things like that....but for me my main issue is keeping my pain under control....

    and this Dr I have does a "perfect" job in trying.....there are NO games....NO waiting like in ins contracted Dr offices, and my Dr cares deeply about me!

    He listens, he understands, and he is exceptionally knowledgeable about this dd and what is an added bonus being a patient of his is that "HE" will educate you on things you are dealing with such as numbness, tingling, pain etc.....he addresses your issues!

    I do not know your personal financial circumstances....but if there is any way you could do what I have I do not think you would regret it for one second.....

    In fact I have regretted that I did not do this sooner!:)

    "Ahhhhhh the greatness of not going to a Dr that is ignorant, impatient, non caring, non educated, and just plain rude.....

    Iam NOT telling you this to make you feel bad at all.....I just want to share with you that I have been where you now are....and this is what I have done .....and I have never been more satisified in my life with any dr as much as Iam with this one!

    It just makes all the difference in the world having a great dr and my wish for you is to have the same thing!:)

    Joeb....I am praying for you I wish I could do something to help you because you do NOT deserve this!

    PLEASE keep us updated

  8. Janalynn

    Janalynn New Member

    I am just sick at the way you've been treated.

    Are they actually saying "I don't have to tell you" - that seems so....rude.

    At the very least, I would copy everything you posted here and mail it- to that doctor, to your doctor to your insurance company. You wrote from your heart -so eloquently - you didn't direct it towards them, you were seeking help here, so it came in a different tone. I think it speaks volumes.
    Would you consider that?
  9. joeb7th

    joeb7th New Member

    One, I am massively in debt. Cannot afford to go to doctors out of my own pocket.

    Janalynn, yes, I should contact this Dr. David Fischer
    and repeat what I said here for all of our sakes.

    I won't get an apology or explanation. I know the egos of doctors now and they are incapable of this. They are actually afraid of losing their perceived "higher respect" relationships and status between them and patients.

    But letters are solid pieces of fact and evidence that patients will not always take and accept unethical treatment by unprofessional, patient rights disrespecting doctors.

    These doctors can dismiss letters and throw them away and dismiss the letter writers as mentally unstable...but each one after another can eventually build up...and if enough of them are written...they may someday dissolve their denials and avoidance of their being confronted with their treatment.
  10. joeb7th

    joeb7th New Member

    I stopped putting negative posts up on the boards a year ago. I had a lot of anger about my treatment from half the doctors and facicilites I went to regarding this unbelievable and confusing malady I got hit by.

    I do not want to do this again because I was kicked off the boards for a while back then and warned not to do so. So I am not writing this out of anger or to upset anyone here or to be discouraging. I am only writing this to share the frustration we all feel some times and also to get a referral in my area which so far hasn't come.

    But, just 10 minutes ago I got a call from the "referral" endicrinoloist who gave me the referral to the recent doctor who turned me down. ( but I had found him through my insurance list, not her )

    I had asked this referring doctor if "she" now knew of any doctors that could take me after I got turned down by this latest one and because she knew my history.

    This endo's assistant called me back this morning with my doctor's answer. She told me that my endo doctor told her to tell me that in her office they had "very good" doctors that were internal med doctors...but that she didn't think any of them would fit my "personality needs?"


    I asked the assistant if she could explain this "personality needs" thing a little better. And she said the doctor told her I needed a doctor who was more of a "listener."

    Without thinking I said "isn't a "good" doctor always one that is a good listener ?" "I mean, if these are good doctors but you don't think they are good can another doctor call them "good?" The assistant had no response.

    So then I asked if her doctor knew of any "good" doctors who were also listeners...and she said she didn't have any other suggestions for doctors.

    Hard to believe...but that is just what I heard 10 minutes ago.

    What am I supposed to do now?

    What kind of message am I supposed to get from these recent doctor turn downs and illogically worded non-referrals.?

    Is this message that I need to find a "good listener" doctor ( of which no doctor knows of ) because of my "personality needs" just a cover statement that none of them want a patient like me? I just feel the most blatant discrimination going on here.
  11. tonakay

    tonakay New Member

    I don't post very often but I do try to read posts a couple of times a week and yours are always ones I look for. I keep hoping you will find a doctor that will actually try to help you! I've read all your ER stories and just shake my head. I feel so bad for you and sure wish I had some words of wisdom!!!

    Just wanted you to know that someone cares and please take care of yourself.

  12. twitcher

    twitcher New Member

    I think this might be illegal. I think it's illegal to refuse care to someone. You have the right to see whatever physician you choose. Your insurance can refuse to cover it though.
  13. joeb7th

    joeb7th New Member

    Not only are our horrible physical maladies a life changing struggle...but fighting discrimination in medical care because of them is just an added on one...isn't it?
  14. SGR

    SGR New Member

    Hi Joe,

    I've worried about you since your diverticulitis attack. Glad you're still fighting. Have you tried L-Glutamine? It is healing to the digestive tract, might be worth looking into. Not very expensive, good for stomach on down. You might google it and see what you think.

  15. tonakay

    tonakay New Member

    Haven't been able to be around here much. What is going on with you now? I know this is an old thread, hoping you get email alerts.

    Take care friend!
  16. pasara

    pasara New Member

    I've been dismissed by several doctors too, who told me they couldn't do anything for me. It made me mad and frustrated at the time, now I'm glad that they didn't waste my time and money by just telling me outright they couldn't help me instead of me figuring it out after several worthless visits and unnecessary tests.

    Keep looking. You do need a doctor who is a "good listener" because how else is he or she going to get a handle on helping you. We all should be so lucky. In other words, the office with the "fine internal med docs" or whatever, who don't fit your "personality needs" are a bunch of automatons putting in time to get a paycheck, and not really interested in a challenging case. You don't want them for your doctor! Your "personality" seems to me to be rational, diligent and insightful. Keep searching for a similar person to work with.

    Don't give up! Keep looking. I would look outside the box though. A referral from an insurance company just means the next name on a list near your zip code. I'm not sure your exact medical needs, but you may want to consider seeking out some alternative practitioners.

    I spent years trying to get help from mainstream medicine, and though it was good to get some of the tests to rule out a few things and have my bases covered for some of the legal stuff I've gone through, ultimately they did NOTHING TO HELP ME HEAL!

    My healing is my true goal, and any progress there has been from my work with my osteopath, chiropractor, homeopath, acupuncturist, counselor, massage therapist, and supportive husband. You need to find your own team, and it may or may not include any specialists with MD after their name.

    One suggestion is to seek out support groups or meet-up groups in your area and see if anyone there has a doc they are happy with.

    Keep the faith!
  17. kitteejo

    kitteejo Member

    My sister sees a Rhemy for other problems than ours and she told her about me. The doctor said she'd like to see me. When I called they asked me that famous question; "what is the reason for the visit", I answered "FM and CFID". The response was; "the doctor's practiced is closed to FM patients". I was sooo ticked off, told my sister and then she called to talk to the doctor. The doctor agreed to see me but I really didn't want to after being turned down.

    Anyways I did go to the appointment and came right out and asked her why she doesn't see "FM" patients and she said, get ready for this, "most FM patients don't want to be helped they just want to complain". I wanted to walk out but figured I just try to get through it. She asked me; "do you want to get better", I said; "of course, I'd love to be normal again". She said; "ok, I'll treat you".

    I have worked with doctors my whole career and have never seen such poor physician relations in all of my years in health care. Physician I know want every patient that they can get. The only time a patient was discharged was if they were "drug seekers/addicts".

    I don't get it. Our money is just as good as others. We do have difficult problems to solve but is that not the reason they became physicians?

    This has been very frustrating for me and most of you also and a real eye opener.

    Hope you find the help that you need Joe. Maybe my story will give you an insight to the reason you were denied care. My advise to all of us is to never use the diagnosis for a reason for the visit but maybe say; "I have sore muscles, sore joints, pain in my knee, etc."

    Good luck to everyone.


    PS. I have my 2nd appointment with her this week, her meds didn't work, my labs came back negative and I'm not better than before. Maybe she'll discharge me, who knows and I really don't care.
  18. jenn_c

    jenn_c New Member

    Especially ones that are on health and human services committees. Tell them you are sick and being discriminated against. That no one will even see you to attempt to help.

    Then I would call the medical board and report each doc that refuses to see or talk to you. Good luck. Jenn