Are doctors empathic enough?


I’d like to know whether you think doctors take enough what we feel into account ? Or are they just in their medical goals and langage?

Different doctors have different ways. I have found over the last twenty years that doctors need to maintain a certain distance in dealing with patients, if they didn’t they would become so depressed and spend most of their time couselling us, in saying that I have often just felt like a file on their desk. I find that the diabetic nurses or diabetic team are of great support, that is more their role. I now have great relationships with the team, hope they can help you. I have found that this place helps more than anything.

No, my Internist doesn’t empathize with my feelings. There is some compassion, not a whole lot, but then we aren’t connected on a personal level. But, even my Dad who loves me lots, has no clue what I experience with diabetes. Until I found tudiabetes, I felt really isolated with diabetes.

I want a doctor who has his goals and language skills and is WITHOUT feelings when he looks at lab reports. I want his COLD, clear eyed interpretation and analysis of those lab reports. I want his quick access to other doctors and medical therapy as needed.
If he takes account of my feelings (e.g., notice them, peg them, determine treatment for them, get my acceptance of his therapy for my feelings), it’ll take more than 7 minutes! That’s all he’s got!
If I have FEELINGS when I’m in his office, they’ll interfere with the the quick wittedness I need to handle his interpretations and prescription advice. I need to be able to reflect back what he’s said, ask if that’s right, and ask questions about the prescriptions.
So I get rid of feelings when I walk in that door! I have to be attentive and have NO feelings. Feelings on my part can cause misinterpretation of what he says in that little time frame that is for me.

    • And if I find I have feelings that keep coming back, I’m going to make an appointment with a counselor who’ll get paid to deal over time with my feelings.
      Consideration of feelings was in the day of the horseback doctor who made house calls, got a chicken for pay, and a sandwich and coffee before he went his way - and it’s alive among the superwealthy who pay extra for the services of a personal physician who signs a contractual agreement with them to consider their feelings!

I think it all depends on what kind of person you are yourself, what you expect, look for, seek in others.

In my case, I have had fabulous consultant diabetologists in London where I used to live and now in Cambridge. I have also had irksome experiences with other doctors/surgeons (never the diabetologists, though).

What I personally want is to be able to have trust in the physician’s expertise in diabetology. As diabetics, we have to manage the condition ourselves 24/7/365 and because of this I think we develop a highly realistic understanding of what can be expected from the world of medicine. Yet I cannot walk the walk alone and still have to be able to trust the doctor in terms of his/her medically-based recommendations. I don’t go to any doctor seeking a touchy-feely experience during a 15-minute appointment.

Francis, si tu as d’autres questions et si tu veux m’écrire en français, envoie-moi un courriel. Je travaille comme traducteur.

I think it all depends on what kind of person you are yourself, what you expect, look for, seek in others.

That´s what I think also… =)

But is so sad if doctor dn´t evev listen what diabetic says or other reasos…

We have a friendly doctor and he is talking with Lasse who has diabetes, asking his feelings and what goes on at school, how he is managing with pump and how he wants to kep his diabetic-diary etc… and then he talk with me, mother. That´s god ´cos I don´t have diabetes, my son have and he lives with it differentlu than I, even that I do changed for pum, calculaiting colhydrates etc, thinking what if he stops reading book and runs outside to play football - extracolhydrates…what was bg etc.
This is just calculating and think, think…but without panic =) .
I like when doctors noticed child when he or she has something.
We live in Finland
Outs! I have myself no good feelings towards my own doctors…and sick to see any of those anymore but I have to… I have rheuma but no one doesn´know what rhema…something special them says and hard to make diagnos but hard it is to me also.
But them always look and read those all papers, I can sometimes say loudly “hellou I´m here too!!” x/
Life is still going on =)

I wish I had stuck with A Level French at school.

…my english is pooooor…but I still try =)

Second reason my mistake writing is my hands, those are always doing what I ask…

No, I wouldn’t prefer a cold blooded robotic doctor. Nor do I want a matter of fact, “get 'em in, get 'em out” clinician to to speed through an appointment with me. My doctor’s time is expensive and I think she ought to earn her fee. That fee pays for sound advice, good clinical care, and human kindness.

My Doc’s care alot. I’m not sure if it’s because I put 110% percent toward which kinds helps my care alot.
I do think alot of doc’s suffer from the “I don’t care attitude” we have rights as patients to have our care redirected if we’re not happy with the level of care we’re receiving. The question could also be “Why do we settle for mediocre care?”

Just my 2 cents

I don’t think you can generalize about all doctors. Mine is very empathetic but yet straight forward at the same time. I’m sure a lot of that has to do with the fact that he has T1 himself, so he understands the ups and downs, and the emotions of it all. He also doesn’t rush me through my appointments and takes time to listen. I say if you don’t feel a connection with your doc, find someone else.

HiI’m Juans mom, I agree with Josephine your diabetic nurses or team are awesome my son just turned 8 years old when he was first diagnosed and they have been so hopeful and supportive, its hard trying to find any support, look into Diabetes Camps for Teenagers in your area you will enjoy it you will find out 99% of the staff have type 1 diabetes. Good luck.

That’s a good point I have empathetic Endo but I would rather have some useful advice instead.

i’m not worried about empathy, but I do worry about getting answers to questions and enough information which my doctor definitely didn’t.
Glad there is this forum.