Response to a disgruntled patient.

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Response to a disgruntled patient.

Post by Glen on Tue Jun 02, 2009 5:23 pm

Hi, All,

I thought it'd be interesting to post a response that I wrote to a patient of mine that saw great improvement after her first 2 doses and then complained on the 3rd dose when she saw no changes to see how you guys also deal with disgruntled patients. This patient was much improved after her 1st 2 doses: anxiety (completely gone), menses back to regular number of days, PMS Sx's were gone, heat in feet gone and generally all Sx's had improved. She had a relapse after the 2nd dose, was given a third dose and this is her response with mine to follow:

Hi Glen,

The last dose you gave me had no effect. My back pain due to gas (I think?) has continued. I know many foods trigger it and when I cut them out completely it gets better. But, what you gave me cause no change. Also, I've realized that many other symptoms have not changed either. My dry soles are still dry. My swollen feet when it's humid happened the one day that was humid and hot a few weeks ago. My dark facial spots appear when it's sunny. I definitely have PMS back due probably partly to the fact that I stopped taking Effexor. The only thing that has improved is my bleeding in between periods, but that had began to improve (as I mentioned to you) when I stopped eating massive amounts of yogurt (hormones in the milk).

In conclusion, I am disappointed as I really wanted to believe that your treatment was going to work.

My response:

Hi, ****,

Thanks for updating me. I understand your disappointment that there have been no changes and your belief in homeopathy is being diminished.

I would though like you to reflect on some changes that have occured. Your anxiety is now gone. You were taking Effexor for 2-3 years for anxiety and it never removed the anxiety. If you were to have come off of it, it would have only come back stronger. After the 1st two homeopathic Rx's you took, your anxiety was quickly, gently and completely removed. You are now completely off Effexor. We've also seen changes in the your periods. They are regular and only 1 week long now and the PMS Sx's were better. (It seems now that there's been a relapse of the PMS Sx's.)

What I need you to understand is that healing is a process. It took many years for your state of health to be where it is now and it will not be undone after just 3 doses of a Rx. We saw that the stress of your mother's health had an antidoting effect previously and we had you redose and improvement followed. There are many factors that play into the healing process and these must each be carefully investigated and observed. What we would need to do now is have a telephone update (no fee) to see where you're at precisely.

If you would like to suspend treatment, I understand and respect your decision. I am always here for you. If you would like to continue treatment, please let me know and we will carry on with a telephone update.

Thanks and hope you're doing well
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Re: Response to a disgruntled patient.

Post by Jack on Tue Jun 02, 2009 6:13 pm

Nothing else to say.
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Re: Response to a disgruntled patient.

Post by Andrea on Wed Jun 03, 2009 4:50 pm

Hi Glen,

I think your answer is perfect! Are you worried about this patient? Is that why you are putting this out to us?

I am also curious to know how she came off the Effexor while you were treating her. Effexor is extremely nasty in its withdrawal symptoms so I am curious about how all this took place. Do you mind sharing that?

Remedy, please?
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Re: Response to a disgruntled patient.

Post by Glen on Wed Jun 03, 2009 5:41 pm

There was a time I would have been worried about whether I would've lost a patient or not. Now I don't worry about it because a patient who already has this kind of attitude will be difficult to treat. If this patient writes back that she'd like to continue, then I'm going to have to ask her to stop self-diagnosing and reserve her judgments and allow what needs to happen to happen. She needs to be on board and this is part of patient education.

The reason that I posted this was because it's important for us to share ways that we handle the business side of our practice. We may glean something from someone else's (why is this word underlined now as I'm writing saying that I'm making a spelling error?) practice that will help us retain a patient or help us to know that there's a time we can let patients go. I wanted to share in case this helps someone else and also to know other strategies that may be more effective.

Dr. Jacques Baur would take a patient's case and if they were a smoker, at the end of the consultation, he tell them, when you decide to be healthy and quit smoking, then we can continue with treatment. It's a bit hardline but I understand why he did it. It's a huge paradigm shift for someone to consciously decide that they want to be healthy. They're taking responsibility in their health rather than just leaving it in the hands of a practitioner.
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Re: Response to a disgruntled patient.

Post by RebeccaG on Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:11 pm

Thanks for posting this Glen. I thought your response was really, really great.

A year into practice, I am finding one of the most challenging aspects is patient education and managing expectations. So much so, that I talk very clearly in the initial about what could possibly happen in terms of response to remedy including aggravations, hygenic issues and how the recovery of health is a process.

As someone new to practice, I like hearing how other practitioners handle such situations.

An acupunturist I know asks patients what they expect from the treatment. This really struck me and I have incorporated this into my initial interview.

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Re: Response to a disgruntled patient.

Post by Glen on Fri Jun 19, 2009 12:44 pm

just to wrap this post up...i was saying in another post that i've not heard from this patient since my response. too bad should couldn't give homeopathy more than 2.5 months before "believing" it didn't work.
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