welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

medical interpreter


she reached out to me when she heard about the flooding here in santa barbara
during our conversation i said i was being a medical interpreter

i told her that mr hudson had gotten severely dehydrated and had to be admitted to icu at cedar sinai
this all happened during the flooding and rain two weeks

she being a former colleague of mine

we mentioned being medical advocates for our kids and in my case my grandkids
she told a story of how her son who had a lot of health issues as a child was severely ill and it took her advocacy to get him properly diagnosed
his illness resulted in a 2 months hospitalization but could have ended up much worse

i told her mr hudsons story and how i acted as a medical interpreter for his parents 

i am not sure how mr hudsons illness would have turned out without some medical advocacy or medical interpretation on my part and his parents advocacy

in medicine as a physician you learn early on in medicine to take a good history as it usually tells you whats wrong with the patient and then you lay your hands on the patient to do an exam
you also watch them while you talk to them and exam them
you also watch those who are with them
you have to learn to read people

i find it hard to believe that some medical providers took such poor history and never laid hands on him or if they did they did just a cursory exam
this is basic medicine that reaps rewards in caring for a patient

i was there in the icu room 24/7 for over 3 days so i didnt miss much

luckily i was able to read up on his medical issues
he had gotten a virus called sapovirus a cousin to the norovirus we all hear about
it waxes and wains sometimes in its presentation it can sort of smolder 
this is what happened and he got severely dehydrated

some providers didnt pay attention to him but his family and i did
i shudder to think what would have happened if it was not for this attention
the outcome would have been worse

what would have happened if his parents and his granddad had not been observant enough and aggressive enough and knowledgeable enough to get him care

what would have happened to a more passive family
i again shudder to think what would have happened

now mr hudson got great care and his outcome turned out to be ok but it could have went the other way
im sure similar cases didnt end so good

i was able to research his diagnosis and treatment and explain it to his parents so they could understand
what would parents do if they didnt have that person

my friend told of an employees child who was seen and sent home from the emergency room with a similar condition
the medical folks didnt not recognize the gravity of the childs illness
it did not turn out well

she said that when she retires she thinks she will be a patient advocate to help patients get through the medical system

thats what i did with mr hudson
it served him well

today he looks his normal self and is gaining all his weight back
he is eating like he is two or three people
he had lost 10% of his weight

i have folks reach out to me frequently for medical advice
not on treatment since i try not to give that type of medical advice 
but on how to work their way through the system

my last three were folks who were having memory issues
they live in three different states
one i know one is a former patients spouse and one was someone who reached out after reading my blog and seeing my interview on being patient

the first person i gave advise on what to do to be ready for their appointment 
the second i reviewed the spouses medical history and recommended they get their spouse a full memory evaluation which they hadnt had
the third was someone with memory loss that was seeking getting the infusions that i am on

i use my medical knowledge and medical experience to help folks get the care they need
they just need to know whats going on and what kind of evaluation should be done
eg one of those persons is getting delayed care i think because their medicare advantage plan is slow in doing their evaluation

i feel good about the recommendations i made to these three people 
all three were appreciative of my involvement
i hope it helps them get the care they need

for mr hudson it helped his family to understand what was happening or not happening with his care
now with mr hudson i sit back and dont say much but at the end of a visit if i feel like something needs to be added i bring it up
i have usually prepared the family for whats going on before the visit happens or in his case the daily rounds of providers
it also helps to have parents who are strong advocates which his parents are

it helps to understand whats going on and to have someone to interpret for them

add medical interpreter to my repertoire

the organicgreen doctor

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