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Reged: 12/14/06
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My HIV MD pisses me off!
      #248564 - 11/24/09 12:38 AM

Sorry everyone but this is a rant!
I am in the process of seeking another HIV MD specialist. I swear some MD's have ZERO human interaction skills. I recently saw my current HIV MD for my follow up and he was training a nurse practitioner and two interns which I gave the ok to do. I figured since they have a "live one" here - me - they might be able to learn a thing or two lol! I was asked a gazillion questions including are you "having problems eating, swallowing food" and my HIV doc turns around and sarcastically says to them - "well just look at him he has no eating problems" and looked directly at my stomache. First off, I am not a skinny, athletic guy or wasted looking guy (even though I do have an AIDS diagnosis). I have always been chubby all my life. My MD is one of those super skinny, super healthy eating, sports nut and he looked at me in disgust like I weighed 500 pounds in front of these people. I was acting cool and collective but I really wanted to belt him one. Needless to say, I am finding another MD. I was freakin treated like scum just because I have a few extra pounds - unbelievable! Coincidently the next day, I read how certain doctors discriminate against heavier people and don't offer them better treatment(s) due to their weight. Has anyone ever experienced this?

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Reged: 11/25/08
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Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248568 - 11/24/09 01:22 AM

Sorry to hear about your experience jmiami, completely unacceptable behavior on behalf of your physician. I would file a formal complaint with the practice, group or clinic, most have a grievance policy. Dollars to “Doughnuts” (no pun intended) he's done this before, and for the record, any more than one additional “trainee” is too much! You had your provider, NP and 2 interns, that’s 2 people too many! He had little time for you....

If you have another "specialist" to go to, then great, but part of living with HIV/AIDS, is having a good relationship with your provider and their staff, obviously this is not the one! Some find it very difficult to switch to a new provider, as you have to re-hash your entire life story all over again, talk about a gazillion questions and answers, it gets painful, if not boring after a while….

Good luck!

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Reged: 03/21/06
Posts: 581
Loc: South
Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248579 - 11/24/09 04:57 PM

Hello J-Miami,
I had a similar problem with my doctor being unconcerned and dismissive towards me.

I'd spend time on this site and others trying to find information about my health and answers to my questions. When I could not find the answer to a specific question about my health, I'd write it down to discuss it during my doctor’s visit. Not only did he not know the answers to the 2 or 3 questions that I posed to him, he appeared to be irritated that I even wanted to know. To make it easier, I’d tell him what I discovered through my research, and asked him to just verify my assessment AT HIS CONVIENENCE. Both times he acted as though I was bothering him, and he made it clear that he was unwilling to find answers for me. Once, he offered his speculation, which I later found was completely wrong.

Several things became apparent: 1) It was MY health and ultimately MY responsibility to get the care that I needed; 2) He was not working for free but was being well paid to provide professional service to me; and most importantly, 3) He was NOT the only doctor around.

I checked around, received recommendations from other, and found a concerned physician & staff who have “teamed” with me. Together, we’re doing a wonderful job of taking care of Gary. You may want to consider doing the same.

Best of luck,

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Reged: 04/14/09
Posts: 11
Loc: United States
Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248632 - 12/01/09 01:09 AM

Had a similar response, but it wasn't my HIV doc.

I had developed, it turned out, Idiopathic Lung Disease - Lymphocytic Interstitial Pneumonitis type, when I turned blue, hallucinated, almost passed out, and came close to needing resuscitation, twice, while hospitalized, already HIV poz for 4 years, at that time. Thus, I was transferred to the nearest "medical center."

There, due to no local doc on staff being affiliated with my case, I had one of those "Hospitalist" doctors, who only cover cases inside not affiliated with local staff.

Around day 3 or so, he came in, irate, arrogant, snarling, like he always did, and he barked at me that IF I would lose weight I could come off of ALL my medicine.

He clearly despised fat people.

Being a RN for 25 years, diabetic, hypertensive, HIV poz, and now this, he was snarling at the wrong person, let me tell you.

I told him in no uncertain terms that I knew I was FAT, that I knew I needed to lose weight, and that I had no one to blame for it, but myself. I then added that it did not happen over night, and could not be remedied over night, so this, now, was what we had to work with.

Furthermore, I told him yet again, that once again, he was NOT listening to me!

(He glared at me, enraged.)

I told him that WAY before I ever drank, smoked, or gained weight, DECADES ago, in my 20s, my body decided to be hypertensive. That my doctor had watched it for a solid year, before placing me on my first antihypertensive medication.

Then I chewed him out for thinking I could go off my BP pill if I would "lose weight," and reiterated that he did not know anything about my history, and he was not listening to me.

Needless to say, he stormed out of there, and each day he made rounds, sparks flew, because it was evident we despised each other.

Were I inflicted with him outside of that admission, I most certainly would have dropped him like a hot potato, and gotten someone far more caring, human, concerned about the total person.

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Reged: 11/24/09
Posts: 22
Loc: Western United States
Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248640 - 12/01/09 08:09 AM


I am not laughing at you... I had a similar experience. My first doctor had ZERO bedside manner but was one of the most experienced doctors in my community and, as it turned out, the nation.

I had my very first visit with my doctor within 48 hours of being diagnosed at the local clinic. I couldn't tell but maybe he was trying to assure or comfort me when he said, "I can't promise you'll live a long life!" in this surly bark. Standing behind him out of his view was his Fellow who looked as if he wanted faint out of shock and embarrassment.

During my second visit, my doctor confused me with someone else whose recent visit to the local clinic turned up a whole bucketload of additional sexually transmitted diseases. After three times attempting to explain I wasn't the man on the list from the clinic and that I was taking my condition and the potential risks to others quite seriously, the Fellow stepped between us and kindly and sternly reiterated my position.

After the doctor left, the Fellow profoundly apologized for my doctor's incredulous manner. I told him they made the perfect team. Dr. Butthead engendered trust because he was incapable of sugar coating anything and he always said EXACTLY what was on his mind. I appreciated that but I also appreciated the Fellow for providing that soft touch of reassurance. Funny thing, I never saw that doctor again... just the Fellow. Dr. Butthead retired a few years later. He had been at the forefront of HIV research and treatment since the mid 80's and apparently had been burned out in the process. I assumed he was supremely frustrated the epidemic was still going on after all they had learned in preventing it.

I agree though. It is imperative that a patient find a doctor with whom a relationship of trust may be developed. We're all different so it's a good thing doctors are as unique as we are.

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Reged: 11/30/04
Posts: 113
Loc: United Kingdom.
Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248661 - 12/02/09 04:10 PM


From just the one example you have given it sounds as if your doctor behaved very unprofessionally. I had a somewhat similar experience and it too occurred when the HIV specialist appeared to be showing off to a medical student who was present.

I reported the whole humiliating incident here at The Body and other people were a great support to me and advised me to report the guy. You can read all about it at:

Maybe as well as find yourself a better specialist you should also report the old one to his superiors. After all, if no one does, then he'll likely treat other patients as badly as he treated you.

Good luck.


Without a dream, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly. Keep hold of your dreams.

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Reged: 06/03/05
Posts: 13
Loc: Florida
Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248695 - 12/04/09 06:54 PM

I'm sorry you had to go through this. I'm in Miami and can recommend a great HIV practice. Is located at Mercy Hospital in Coconut Grove. I've been with them since 2002 and love them. It's the Kinder Medical Group, my doc is Schmitt but all of them are great. Good Luck!

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Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248725 - 12/07/09 10:21 PM

Bird, I just read your story and boy does that sound familiar!!!!! Its funny that my ex-doc-to-be's office staff have very high turnover and when I asked one of the office staff, they replied it is the fault of my current MD and gave an example that of one many of his "arrogances" such as he does not allow any of the staff to bring anything he "considers" junk food to the office!!!!! My current doc happens to also work for the CDC and is the chief infectous control doc. for one of Miami's top hospital too BUT his behaviors prove that a "title" does not make a person.

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Re: My HIV MD pisses me off! new
      #248727 - 12/07/09 11:02 PM

Thanks everyone for their replies!!!! All this comes to prove that some doctors SHOULD NOT be doctors but stay in some isolated research lab away from people!

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