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MD turning his back on CW

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  • MD turning his back on CW

    Greetings! Just wanted to say that I absolutely love the primal blueprint! I have always been a natural skeptic, whether its religion, politics, my friend's MLM product, or even the conventional wisdom of the AMA, but when I stumbled upon the primal blueprint I have to say that it all made so much good sense that I was fully on-board almost right away. I feel I have a scientific mind so I love things that make sense and are based in science. I also feel I have a keen nose for pseudoscience and quackery.

    Anyway, I am a young MD just out of residency in family medicine, but I have actually for a few years had a general dislike of medicines. It all started with me being keenly aware of the length of my patients' med lists and thinking how outrageous it was that someone could be on so many medications. Then came feeling embarrassed while watching pharmaceutical commercials where at the end a woman in a cheery voice listed every side effect imaginable as a possibility of taking the drug. I started to feel depressed about the fact that I was prescribing people these medicines. I would try to give them advice towards making lifestyle changes for their diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol, arthritis, back pain, insomnia, etc but it wasn't yielding results. I felt pressure to prescribe medicines because it seemed most patients wanted quick "fixes" to their problems. Many were unwilling or unable to even make the modest lifestyle changes I was suggesting, so I would end up prescribing them the Lipitor or blood pressure pill, and don't even get me started on diabetes. That went along with feeling pressured to prescribe antibiotics and cough syrups to demanding patients coming in with typically viral infections. I could go on and on really. We have such an unhealthy population that I was getting depressed about that fact that I felt I was just prescribing pills to cover up for other people's unhealthy lifestyles, and the bad part is I didn't feel I was really making them any healthier! In the big picture I felt I was more part of the problem than the solution to our nations healthcare (read: sickcare) crisis. Well I have been advocating for the primal blueprint diet to my patients recently, and I am interested to see how many will make the lifestyle changes necessary to get off their meds. Of course, I tell them that this is the "diet" that I personally follow and that gives me more credibility, especially since I'm pretty fit. As of now I'm really struggling with how to go forward in this field where there is such a high demand and pressure to prescribe pills. I do believe that for some people and conditions, pills are more necessary, but for the vast majority of things they are not. As we speak, I'm seriously considering going back to residency for emergency medicine, where I'm dealing with more severe, acute illness. I think I'll be much more happy in that arena since those are the things I already enjoy the most treating as a family doctor. So, wish me luck!

  • #2
    good luck, doc
    yeah you are

    Baby if you time travel back far enough you can avoid that work because the dust won't be there. You're too pretty to be working that hard.


    • #3
      Well I guess you have a couple of options, you can start practicing primally - I think there is a list of primal doctors somewhere so people seeking out Drs like you can find them, then I suppose you could look further into comlimentary medical treatment, and even start a whole primal health practice, with and MD, and osteopath, a primal dietian, herbalist, personal trainer etc etc, whatever floats your boat that you think adds value.

      Or you could go into the ER where there is no doubt the Docs do good, after all, if red stuff is coming out fast you stop it, if a leg has a bend in the wrong place you make it right again, if a heart stop beating you do something about it. You also get to shout STAT lot.

      Or you could run away and live in horse drawn wagon and sell magic cure-all town to town

      What ever it is you do, it sounds like you have a desire to do something positive, so good luck to ya
      You know all those pictures of Adam and Eve where they have belly button? Think about it..................... take as long as you need........................


      • #4
        I've just retired from the practice of medicine (ok, after 30 years of practice) because I couldn't stand writing one more prescription I didn't believe in.

        Were I young doc now, starting out, I would do a fellowship in complementary medicine, hire a nurse practitioner, and open a fee-for-service "whole health" complementary medicine clinic. Good luck to you.....may the (primal) Force be with you!



        • #5
          I'm getting my PhD in biomedical engineering and facing some of the same challenges (but not nearly so bad). I switched from tissue engineering to robotics to be farther away from drug development. There are MANY options for you without going back and doing an emergency residency. Send me a PM if you want to talk about it. I live in the "city of medicine" and even here it's very hard to find a primary care doctor that's willing to suggest supplements and dietary changes. You just have to establish yourself in a practice that's know for a CAM approach and it will be easy to get the kind of patients you want.


          • #6
            Hey, I just want to say Hi from the other side- I currently have a loooong list of medications, some of which may be necessary for life and some of which could definitely be ditched if my lifestyle were utterly different.

            I have a unique take, having a doctor for a mom and being a CNA- I also have a B.S. in biology and I've seen behind the scenes of medicine. My primary care doctor is great, but the drawback of doctoring is the same of patienting- there is so little reasonable exercise that is really readily available in most lifestyles. For example, I played lots of sports in high school and I'd love to goalie again, but there aren't any casual adult leagues available in my area. I dumped my car for a while, and that was reasonably successful, but it took me ten times longer to get to my doctor's appointments, time I just didn't have to spare. I live just on the verge of walkability, about a mile from the closest bus stop.

            I recently decided to start picking up trash by the river and in the parks again, since it gets me out and it gets me accomplishing things. I might even start a crew, since I'm a trash pickup ninja due to my days as an ecology TA. But really- otherwise I might as well be on a treadmill at the gym, since I'm just not DOING anything. Pointless walks are just not very worthwhile!

            But since I'm unemployed and severely depressed(and fibro'ed, with a rare brain disorder... so on, ad nauseam) I spend most of my time in my apartment. I do walk on my treadmill desk with my computer, but walking is difficult for me right now- so I do it till it hurts, then take a break. But this is no way to get better. I am keeping to the Paleo diet, which gives me more energy, but I really long for exercise, which would kill five birds with one stone.

            Anyway, I blathered on, but the point is that I really feel where you're coming from, and there are patients out there who are ready and willing to jump on board- but one of the best things you can do is brainstorm around common obstacles, like fatigue, difficulty walking or getting up and down from the floor, poverty, et cetera. I think this forum is a terrific place to do that. For example, I was really motivated by Mark's Prison Workout, which discussed getting fit when you're extremely restricted.

            I'm really glad to see you join us! Grok on!


            • #7
              Welcome, Doc. Your patients will be healthier because of your change of viewpoint.
              High Weight: 225
              Weight at start of Primal: 189
              Current Weight: 174
              Goal Weight: 130

              Primal Start Date: 11/26/2012


              • #8
                Welcome aboard Doc. It is fantastic that you are in a position to pass on some knowledge of this magnitude.
                One of my brothers is a Doctor and he set up 7 emergency centers around Auckland many years ago. Another brother is a dentist and I also have a couple of nurse sisters and a nurse Mum. (they all pitched in to staff it - in the beginning) Anyhoo could you set that sort of facility up in America ????
                These centers were like little mini A'n'E departments, and took some major pressure off the hospitals.
                He on sold them a few years ago and I believe that they are still going strong - anyway just a thought to enable you to incorporate a medical practice with the exciting emergency Trauma medicine side.
                Good Luck with your endeavours.
                "never let the truth get in the way of a good story "

                ...small steps....