Monday, 4 February 2013

A good doctor is worth her weight in gold

The boys' paediatrician is Dr B.  I hesitate to reveal more of her name as her patient load is so full that she is currently turning away new patients that are not medical emergencies.

How did I know she was THE doctor for Medium Boy and Small Boy?
I have a healthy scepticism for Western medicine.  To me, the whole body of knowledge treats the symptoms and not the cause... as a new mother when Medium Boy was born, when the ob/gyn asked me to choose a PD, I went along with his recommendation... as I did not know better.

Vaccines are normally lab treated (and the pharma firms say.... milder) variants of the same bug they are designed to prevent.  I cannot make sense of why a newborn with an undeveloped immune system has to be vaccinated.  Medium Boy was delivered by vacuum, hence he had Vitamin K in case his system had a shock..... I left the BCG vaccination until he was 2 weeks old.  Dr B was fine with this.

The first time I consulted Dr B was when Medium Boy was 5 days old.  MB had already been pricked on his heel 2 times during those 5 days as he displayed the classic symptoms of jaundice - yellowing in the whites of his eyes and yellowing at his joints.  Day 1, which I was not present, and Day 4 at PD #1.  The bilirubin level result was 16.2 on Day 4.  PD #1 recommended hospitalisation but he did not push his case when I said I wanted Medium Boy with me.  [14 to 16 reading indicates mild jaundice; above 16s are normally hospitalised; above 18s need blood transfusions]
I recoiled physically at the thought of being away from Medium Boy when he had spent the previous 38 weeks being one with me.

In desperation on day 4, I called Dr B in the late afternoon... and begged for an appointment for the next day.  Nurse S probably heard the crazed note of a new mom in my voice and scheduled a 2pm - first in the afternoon - appointment the next day.

When I turned up at Dr B's clinic, I was like the wary Smiggle in Lord of the Rings, only that my preciousssssssss is Medium Boy.  Prepared to hold onto him for dear life, and to hiss at anyone who remotely suggested taking him away from me.
Dr B asked me "What was his result?" I said 16.2 and only pricked yesterday, then ventured to ask if she wanted to prick him again today.  She looked at me a tad incredulously, no of course not, she replied, it hurts and one day wont make much of a difference to her diagnosis.  PLUS she is pro-breastfeeding and understood how important skin-to-skin contact is for a successful latch.
She advised me to rent a bilibed instead for home therapy.

OH in that instant, my anxious heart was stilled.
I knew she put her patients' welfare above everything else (Dr B is not above telling me to research more when I asked her about breastfeeding).... I just KNOW.  I can entrust Medium Boy and Small Boy to her good hands, medically.  Now, if I bring just Medium Boy or Small Boy to her, she asks about the other brother.  She is also my mentor in mothering them.... she observed both of them interacting in the consultation room one day and remarked... these 2, they will gang up and cover for each other their misdeeds one day, and YOU, dear mommy, will know nothing unless they choose to tell you.  *grin*

She is a slight woman, is Dr B.

In fact, with her hair down and dressed in a tank top and red shorts when she came into hospital on Easter Sunday 2010 to visit Small Boy, she looked very much the teenager.  The giveaway is the stethoscope around her neck.

I have used her advice and her name "I asked Dr B, and Dr B says tis ok" when the elders wonder aloud in my presence whether I should continue breastfeeding, what age to wean, what age to talk and walk.  When Medium Boy was 18mo, and still made one-word sounds, she simply said, well he is still in the normal range of speech development.... then turned to the extroverted talk-a-mile-a-minute Husband and said, maybe you should give him a chance to reply to you.  :P

Now I am referring my primary school classmate's 20mo daughter's case of UTI Urinary Tract Infection to her.  In this day when I have encountered many doctors who recommend diagnostic tests to cover their own risks, she is truly a doctor worth her weight in gold.

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