Not about how to treat an illness but how to seek treatment.
I have had the same doctor (internist) for about 16 years. I like her. She's my age, and she's easy to talk to.
But she's in the office for only about three hours a week. (That's not an exaggeration; that's what she told me.) She teaches in medical school and barely sees patients anymore. She'll see people for their annual checkup because you can schedule that far in advance.
However, she doesn't see people for sudden illness. Instead, if something like that happened, I would have to see her nephew or her niece who are in practice with her. (I guess it's a family practice in more ways than one.)
The niece is new to the office. She hasn't been practicing very long, and I know nothing about her other than the fact that my doctor says I'd be fine with her. I've seen the nephew once or twice, and he seems personable, knowledgeable, etc. But I prefer women doctors. (Not to mention the fact that he is young and distractingly handsome. I know that shouldn't matter but somehow it does.)
My husband sees a different doctor, also a woman. His doctor and my doctor used to be in the same office, but they split the practice about ten years ago. (Maybe to make room for my doctor's relatives???) Michael thinks I should switch. His doctor is more responsive than mine. Anytime he has tests, she calls at the end of the work day and will discuss the results thoroughly with him. My doctor has her nurse call.
Part of me thinks he's right and I should switch doctors. But I hate starting the patient / physician relationship all over. And I have this over-developed sense of loyalty. I feel guilty for considering leaving my doctor . . . even though in one sense, she has already left me.
Any thoughts? Am I making too much of the fact that my doctor has cut back hours? Or is it normal to think of switching physicians in a situation like this?