Episode #34: Is Your Doctor a Jerk?

November 15, 2019

Show Notes:

Speaker 1: (00:00)
Hey everybody, what's going on? Dr. Chad Woolner here, Dr. Buddy Allen. And this is episode 34 of the health fundamentals podcast. And on today's episode we're talking about the question is your doctor a jerk? So let's get started.

Speaker 2: (00:13)
You're listening to the health fundamentals podcast. I'm Dr Chad Woolner and I'm Dr buddy Allen. And this show was about giving you the simple but powerful cutting edge tools you need to change your health and your life. So sit back and enjoy the show as we show you the path to your best life down to a science.

Speaker 1: (00:33)
So, Hey everybody, on today's episode we're talking about the question is your doctor a jerk? A and there's actually some pretty profound evidence now that suggests, uh, that this is, this could be the difference between you improving in your health or not very. Um, yeah. And, and, uh, you know, it's interesting. I first started, uh, well, I've always intuitively felt like bedside manner has been this often downplayed element that I've always felt is far more crucial in the overall equation of, of health and healing and helping patients. Um, then people are willing to admit, uh, and, and reason being is because I think far too often we want to think and believe that skill and expertise and the actual things that are being done are the secret. Uh, and, and not to dismiss or downplay or say, but those things don't matter. Those are important.

Speaker 1: (01:30)
Yeah, they are. Absolutely. Um, but I think the reality of it is his bedside manner and the way the doctor conducts himself interacting with the patient, the way he communicates, or she, he or she, I'm saying he here, but he or she, um, makes just as much of a difference. It is just as important as skill, as clinical competence, as the actual interventions that are being done. I've always felt that way. I've always just intuitively believed that to be the case. And I think most people, when you present this to them, I would say would, would, would feel similarly. Sure. And I saw a book that has recently come out and I, I have it. I haven't read all of it yet. I started it. Um, it's called compassion omics. And it's talking about this very thing. But there was an article that was recently published, uh, that said it.

Speaker 1: (02:18)
The, the, the article is entitled the power of bedside manner on pain. And it said, new research shows how a doctor's beliefs and attitudes affect patient outcomes. And so they talk about this idea of not just bedside manner in terms of does the doctor communicate well and as he kind and is he compassionate and does he, uh, you know, effectively communicate. But does the doctor exude confidence and competence in terms of their attitudes towards, uh, the patient with regard to what it is that they're doing? You know, and, and that should make perfect sense because those sorts of seemingly subtle or maybe at times not so subtle things can have a tremendous impact on the patients, uh, expectations. Uh, and the patient's attitudes and beliefs and our own personal attitudes and beliefs dramatically impact our own health outcomes. I mean, this has been proven time and time again in research that's been done.

Speaker 1: (03:18)
Um, most people have heard of the placebo effect. Um, and I would say that maybe people haven't heard of the other side of that coin. The darker side that what we call the no seat CBO, the no CBOE right. Placebo effect is this idea that people have heard of, that your mind can shape and alter your physiology. Um, you know, for good meaning, you know, if you've heard of research where they take and compare they, they blind things or they use placebo controls, uh, to determine what's the mechanism of action behind a patient getting better results. Was it that the intervention actually really did something or was it that the patient's own mind believed it and therefore it was so, um, because placebos are very, very real powerful. It is powerful. But on the flip side, no CBO is, is, is powerful as well. And it's basically the opposite.

Speaker 1: (04:06)
That if you think and believe and feel that, that there is going to be a negative outcome, that you're going to get sick, that you're gonna do better, that your pain is gonna be worse, then it happens just as much. You know? And I think sometimes people often, um, dis not dismiss placebo but, but look down on it like it's this bad thing. I think it's a great thing. I was fully tastic especially, yeah, sometimes you just have to get things right in your own man, in your own mind to be able to move onto a healthier place. And absolutely for a lot of people, whether it be with getting to a healthy weight or getting over sicknesses or you name it, I mean there's, your mind is 100% essential for you to Rick up to fully recover from anything. Right. But you know, there's something, as you were talking about, you know, that your doctor being, um, you know, confident in and uh, and a good communicator and kind and, and don't want one of the, the, the one little caveat I would say from a, having worked with a lot of patients, don't be a doctor that or, or, or don't be upset if your doctor tells you something that's a little bit hard.

Speaker 1: (05:14)
But because sometimes, um, we, uh, patients and I, and I say we as in myself included, we will kind of, um, we will try to poopoo the, the maybe the severity of certain things that we are or are not doing, whether we take care of something that's really important or not. If a doctor tells you, listen, you are grossly overweight and you and, and it can be done in a nice way, tactful tactfully. But if someone tells you something and it's hurtful to you, I don't believe all doctors, some doctors do have poor bedside manner. Absolutely. I don't believe all doctors who may have to I and that's hard for to tell someone, listen you're really unhealthy. Yeah. You really need to like for us to be able to help you even though it's for us. Maybe your back or your leg or your hip.

Speaker 1: (06:08)
Yeah. Like we have to help you get to a healthier weight. You can't, you can't discredit or call that doc or that doctor sucks cause he's, he said I was fat. Yeah. Or he said I was lazy or whatever. You know, if someone tells you something, that is it. I mean, it's not easy for us to have to say that to people, right? Honestly. Well, any, and again, I think the key here that you're talking about is not what's being said, but how it's being cyst. That's the difference. And the reality of it is, is that we have to be self aware enough as individuals to accept the fact that human nature is such that we always want to put softening filters on everything that's coming through because none of us want to admit that we're lazy, that we're fat, that we're, you know, unhealthy that were, you know, all these we don't want, we don't necessarily enjoy hearing those sorts of things.

Speaker 1: (06:58)
And so sometimes, uh, removing those filters can be a painful, can be a little bit of a painful process. But again, what that does is that reiterates and reinforces, I think even further this whole power of how the doctor interacts with the patient, they can make all the difference in the world. Because I think there is a way that you can, you can kind of, um, tread that line very, very carefully and delicately, but yet very effectively by delivering that kind of information in a, in a very, um, honest, transparent, competent and but care but caring way to the patient to the, to the degree that they know that it's not coming from, um, you know, a place of judgment. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And, and I think that to be perfectly honest, our experience in this, that that is established at the beginning of the relationship, you know, that before you even entertain or start getting those questions, I think that's the key.

Speaker 1: (07:57)
You know, it's really interesting. Um, they've done studies, I remember an article about this and I can't remember off the top of my head. I know it came from one of our malpractice insurance carriers where they write monthly articles about various scenarios and stuff of, you know, take home lessons on how to obviously mitigate risk in terms of your patient encounters. But one of the things that they talked about was a factor that that dramatically increased the likelihood of whether or not a doctor was going to get sued or not. And it was something as fundamental and simple as did the patient feel like the doctor was listening to them if they felt like the doctor wasn't listening to them, that they won't, that they weren't being heard, the likelihood of a doctor's malpractice suits went up dramatically. Wow. Dramatically. And it's something as simple as does the patient feel like they're being heard, but that they're being validated in the things that they're dealing with.

Speaker 1: (08:51)
And that happens at the beginning of that relationship. That's something that, that, that, that starts from the get go. Um, and so the, the whole take home I think in, in all of this is that, um, it's, it's a two way street really. Uh, number one, uh, if your doctor is a jerk, fire your doctor. You don't have to, you know what I mean? Feel like you have to stick with somebody if you don't feel like. Um, and, and I think that's surprising to me to be honest with you is I feel like sometimes I've heard over the years of patients where they tell me these stories and it just makes my jaw drop sometimes. I'm like, the doctor said, what do you, and I've had personal experiences. My wife and I, uh, you know, with, with, uh, through the years, uh, my wife having dealt with infertility years ago, um, she dealt with a handful of doctors who were less than compassionate, um, very just very poor bedside manner.

Speaker 1: (09:46)
One in particular I remember, um, was a jerk. He was just an outright jerk. And guess what? We didn't go back and see him, you know, my wife found another doctor. So don't feel like you have to continue down that road just because, you know. Um, but, but on the flip side of that, also maybe doing a little bit of self reflection as to whether or not you have the self awareness and the ability to, um, you know, consider whether or not there is truth in things that are reported back to you that may, um, cause some potential initial discomfort of hearing, you know, that you may not want to hear, you know, if the doctor tells you more or less, you know, uh, in hopefully a better filtered way, but that you're fat, you know, if he, if he says you're fat, are you going to listen to that or is there, is there truth to that?

Speaker 1: (10:36)
And what are you gonna do about it, you know, or, or other various things. And so I guess that's that whole point, you know. Um, but just understand, uh, the, the, the punchline in all of this is the research is supporting something I think that we intuitively should feel is right. You know, that the way that the doctor or healthcare professional in general, um, communicates with the patients is gonna make all the difference in the world in terms of their outcomes. Uh, and this is especially true when it comes to pain. Um, pain is such an interesting, um, very fascinating, uh, aspect of, of health, you know, and, and so much of that realm of pain because so much of it is so subjective and so, so unique to each individual. Um, this whole idea of, of the doctor's bedside manner, we'll just say in general, um, can have such a profound impact for good or for bad, you know.

Speaker 1: (11:38)
So anyways, uh, any other thoughts you have about it? No. No, not really. Okay. Alright. Be a cool doctor. Be a [inaudible] patient. Yeah. And get better. Yeah. Be good to each other. B, you know, we'll end this with bill and Ted's excellent adventure, you know, be, be excellent to each other. Right. So, anyways, uh, I hope this has been interesting for you and hopefully this has been helpful. And if you know others that could benefit, uh, a subscribed to the podcast, let us know a comment, ask questions, let us know if you'd like to hear anything specific that you'd like to us to tackle in terms of a topic a and then share this with others that you think could benefit from it. And, uh, we're excited to share more with you on the next episode. Have a good one guys.

Speaker 2: (12:23)
Thanks for listening to the health fundamentals podcast. Be sure to subscribe so that you stay in the loop. And in the note with all of the cutting edge health information that we share, if you know other people that could benefit from this information, please share it with them as well. Also, be sure to give us a review. These really help us to ultimately help more people. Last but not least, if you have questions that you want answered live on the show, or if you have ideas for topics that you would like us to cover, please shoot us an email and let us know@infoatthehealthfundamentals.com.

MJ Manlunas
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