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Old 01-24-2013, 07:17 AM   #31
indimom
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I don't think I've ever asked for emergency medical advice here, I have plenty family and friends I can hit up at home for that.

I have asked for medical advice. Like another poster described, it was a "gray area,", I had seen a doctor and was very concerned about the advice I had gotten (wait a month to see a specialist when it seemed like more of an emergency than that).
I wanted to get opinions, but noone in my family had ever dealt with something like this.
The Dis (particularly the community board) gets a ton of traffic, so I came here.

I've also answered some of the medical questions on this board, doesn't bother me. Maybe they have friends here. Maybe they want more information than family can provide. Maybe they have questions they cannot take to family and friends (for any number of reasons), so they go to an anonymous source. Doesn't bother me at all.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:22 AM   #32
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I had to add this. Using the internet for medical information is very common (come on, you know you've done it).

I actually saw a news program last week that said the CDC is able to better track the flu because they are now compiling and contrasting Google searches of key words related to the flu. They will see an influx of searches as the flu begins to hit an area. This is giving them a better idea of where and when people are starting to see particular symptoms, track it through small community areas; and get information that includes people who do not go to the doctor. It was very interesting.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:30 AM   #33
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1. Not everything is that clear-cut - there's a lot of gray area between "take care of it at home" and "rush to ER".

2. A lot of doctors' office don't have advice lines and the docs aren't willing to give any opinion over the phone.

3. ERs are crowded and often it takes hours to be seen - why would you want to go through that if it wasn't necessary? Sometimes people need to bounce things off of others in order to form a clearer picture.

4. Urgent care clinics are usually nicer but boy do you pay for them! Again, why would you want to rush down there if you aren't sure you really need to?

5. Your regular doctor is probably all booked up and the wait for a walk-in will also be hours.

Due to the above, a lot of people take a little extra time to evaluate a situation before seeking medical help. There are some obviously life-threatening situations such as not being able to breathe or bleeding excessively. But not everything that seems scary at the time is actually life-threatening.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:46 AM   #34
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People post on this board about all sorts of things. The medical posts usually aren't emergency type issues.
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Old 01-24-2013, 08:02 AM   #35
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I agree with most of the previous posters about people confuses about those grey areas, but there is another reason as well.

As a nurse, I often see patients tell me things instead of their doctor. The residents will make their morning rounds on the patients, and no more than five minutes later, my patient will call me to tell that they are experiencing "insert sign or symptom here". I ask them if they told the doctor that just left their room and they always say no.

I truly believe that many patients feel that if they tell the doctor about their problem, then the doc will think something is really bad and order lots of
blood tests or X-rays and scans. But if they tell the nurse, then he/she could probably cure if with a Tylenol or hot tea (or just tell them that it's nothing).

Same reason many people don't want to go to the doctor - they might actually diagnose something (bad) and sometimes people don't want to know that and they will ask their family or friends instead because they can't diagnose something, so the problem isn't a reality, yet.
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Old 01-24-2013, 09:04 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by princesspumpkin View Post
I agree with most of the previous posters about people confuses about those grey areas, but there is another reason as well.

As a nurse, I often see patients tell me things instead of their doctor. The residents will make their morning rounds on the patients, and no more than five minutes later, my patient will call me to tell that they are experiencing "insert sign or symptom here". I ask them if they told the doctor that just left their room and they always say no.

I truly believe that many patients feel that if they tell the doctor about their problem, then the doc will think something is really bad and order lots of
blood tests or X-rays and scans. But if they tell the nurse, then he/she could probably cure if with a Tylenol or hot tea (or just tell them that it's nothing).

Same reason many people don't want to go to the doctor - they might actually diagnose something (bad) and sometimes people don't want to know that and they will ask their family or friends instead because they can't diagnose something, so the problem isn't a reality, yet.
This happens all the time! Just two days ago I was admitting a young girl who told me she was having burning, discharge, odor when she went to the bathroom. "Did you tell the doctor?" ...."No."

Of course where I work the doctors walk around with an army of residents, students, etc. so I can't really blame anybody for not wanting to divulge to a room full of people what's going on with them.
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Old 01-24-2013, 09:54 AM   #37
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Personally I use WebMD or some other medical online source rather than post a question on a board like this.
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Old 01-24-2013, 09:57 AM   #38
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Sometimes people just need a sounding board. As long as it's not something life-threatening then I see no harm.
I agree with this.

Sometimes people have things on their mind and they are venting or thinking out loud.
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Old 01-24-2013, 10:32 AM   #39
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It always boggles my mind when I see someone with "insert random medical issue here" and asks everything from if they need to go to the ER, call 911 or set up their plot at the local cemetery..

Honestly, don't folks call a MEDICAL professionals? If your first instinct is to hit a Disney forum to see if that red bump is a going to give septic shock, you got your priorities wrong..

I mean, there are stuff here that people post that screams call 911 and they take the time to post and hope some random person with zero true medical training might give them good advice.

Because some random person may have some really good advice.

#1. You're assuming that no one has medical training. how do you know? I'm betting there is a doctor or two lurking about.

#2. some times experience is much better than the advice a doctor can give you. I found that out first hand from dealing with my dh when he was battling leukema. sorry but some of the advice I got here from other cancer patients was 1000X's more helpful than a boatload of oncologist from the University of Penn hospital.

#3. Some times a perfect stranger who has no vested interest can do a lot. that's the old "bar tending" syndrome. You really don't want or expect advice but some times it can help just by some one who doesn't know you pushing you in the right direction.
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Old 01-24-2013, 10:42 AM   #40
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This is an entertainment forum as much as anything. I dont see the big deal with posting whatever questions you want, even stupid ones.
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Old 01-24-2013, 10:49 AM   #41
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I actually posted one about a tooth, and have also about cortisone injections, and plantar fascitis. I think knowledge is power and I personally learn from other people through their experiences. My best friend is a pharmacist and she tells me about new allergy meds, then I ask the doctor about them. I don't see no harm in questions....

I personally have never read one where someone is writing about chest pains and should they go to doctor. I think common sense is if it were real bad most of us are adults on here and I would hope they would know to dial 911 and not DIS boards. With that being said, I still stand by KNOWLEDGE IS POWER, SHARING experiences, just enriches your own wisdom....
Actually, I had been having heel pain for about 2-3 years, but never went to the doctor because I would forget about it after I got those first 10 steps out of the way. I found out about plantar fascitis here on the DIS, looked it up and said 'bingo!" Tried some stretching exercises and it went away.

I have an elderly father and a teen daughter. One or the other is usually complaining about some strange feeling somewhere. So when I see a post, I tend to read the posted symptoms as being far less acute than many responders do. I'm actually surprised at the number of "get to the ER NOW!" answers that come up on some of them.
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Old 01-24-2013, 10:55 AM   #42
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I'm actually surprised at the number of "get to the ER NOW!" answers that come up on some of them.
Me too!
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:14 AM   #43
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Are you serious? You wonder how some people make through life.
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:33 AM   #44
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I guess often people want a ore personal response to a problem rather than just a clinical one from their doctor. I'm a moderator on a mental health forum and we get tonnes of traffic with people asking advice about all sorts of questions; they just appreciate the more relaxed replies they get from people who have been through exactly what they are going through.
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Old 01-24-2013, 12:02 PM   #45
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I have posted questions a few times myself, even though I'm an old nurse. There are several advanced practice nurses on the DIS who are a wealth of general information. I don't ask questions in hopes of a free diagnosis. Some times all I want is a little help deciding if I'm seeing what I think I'm seeing. Sometimes I just want to process a problem with others who have been there and done that. I find that, in general, doctors do not have the time nor the inclination to educate their clients. So, from time to time I pose a medical question on the DIS.
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