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This Derm is Lucky to be Nameless
from Jessie D.

Ed:  Thanks for the web site.  I am 52 and have had P and PA for 6 years.  My first outbreak was about 90% of my body (and it is real big). 

Thank God my GP knew about P (his wife has it) and sent me right away to a Derm. 

First I went to an older Derm then was passed over to his much younger partner.  Ed, I have a very beautiful daughter.  At the time I went to the Derm she was 20.  When they called me to be examined she went with me.  Well, this young derm saw her standing with me at the counter and gave her one of those Hi good looking! What’s your sign? looks.  Then we went to an exam room. 

After examining me, he turned to my beautiful flawless-skinned daughter and said,  "You know, you will probably get this." 

Needless to say neither of us were happy.  I went two more times to this "doctor" and was badly treated.  I believe he only wanted to work on the money-making clients; he did not want to have to deal with my problem.  And I kept asking questions, which probably also irritated him.

I changed doctors and now I get real good treatment. 

Have a great time at the conference [NPF National Conference 2002, August 9-11, Orlando, FL. -Ed]. If I have to speak or lead a meeting I usually pick a spot on the wall to talk to.

Thanks again for the site. -Jessie D.


Ed’s Response:  Fortunately, I can count on my fingers the bad-doc email here at FlakeHQ.  I’m talking about the stories that just make me want to stand up and throw my derms bills out the window.  Yours has just upped the count by 1. 

Maybe we should attribute his outrageous lack of judgment to youth and naiveté.  Maybe we should attribute it to that brain-deadness that happens to the young and oversexed in the presence of new prey (your daughter, unfortunately).  Whatever we blame it on, that statement was utterly uncalled for as well as being grossly bad judgment.  Was he asked to dispense medical opinion to your daughter?  No! 

If I were omnipotent, I would knock $10,000 per year off every doctor’s income when any one doctor made that kind of mistake.  Docs pride themselves on being so “self-policing” ... I think you’d find there’s sudden and considerable improvement in that self-policing if they all had to pay for the sins of the few. 

Also, docs make too bloody much money to make such stupid mistakes. 

If I were omnipotent I would convert your young derm into a veterinarian who services insects and then transport him to a kingdom populated fully but solely by cockroaches.

About the public speaking tip.  Someone else recommended that approach to calming the jitters years and years ago and I tried it several times with some success.  Then there was this short-lived television commercial — I can’t remember what it was for — but in the first few seconds you see a woman in a room with pattern-painted walls.  Suddenly you see movement on the wall and a leotard-clad bald man, also sporting the pattern paint, steps away from the wall where he’d been invisible before moving.  Ever since that commercial I’ve been terrified to stare at a spot on the wall.  If a camouflaged conference registrant stepped out of that spot I’m afraid I’d wet my pants. 

But thanks anyway, Jessie <wink>. -Ed

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