Perhaps I Need A New Neurologist

Ritalin

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I have had a grumble about my neurologist Herr Dr F on here before, like when he rang me up to ask me to come and fix his computer or the time where he asked me what disorder he was treating me for, even though he had been my doctor for 6 months. But what happened at my appointment on Thursday morning left me really doubting his ability to treat his patients properly.

A little background here. In Germany (and in probably most Western countries), all of your medical information is kept electronically. A drug can not be prescribed to you unless it has been entered into the computer system first. In the 12 months that Herr Dr F has been dispensing my medication, the exact same medication I might add, every single instance of it is stored on his computer system. Therefore, when Herr Dr F asked me during my latest appointment what medication I was taking and what dosage I was on, I was a little concerned. I was even more concerned to see him typing it into his computer. The same computer that already contains all of this information. Now, I made a slight error when telling him the details of my medication. I told him I was taking the 50mg tablets. This was accepted with a nod and entered into the computer. However, when I got home and looked at the packet sitting on my bathroom shelf I’m actually taking the 25mg tablets. I just doubled my dosage of a prescribed medication and my doctor didn’t even notice this.

Now before you all freak out, this medication was not actually prescribed to me during this visit as I already have a decent supply of this and also, I had previously been on the 50mg tablets (about 6 years ago), so I know that nothing untoward will happen if I happened to have been given it. Still, I have to admit, that I am more than a little concerned about this. If he is asking me what meds he is prescribing me, then he is asking his other patients as well. Having spent some time in his waiting room, quite a lot of his patients are elderly and aren’t doing so good with the whole memory thing. What are they telling him and what on earth is he prescribing them? Some of their medications could cause serious problems if the dosage is changed. I feel deeply uneasy about having him as my doctor. Luckily my disorder is under really good control with my medication so basically all I’m needing him for is a signature on my prescription. Still, if ever I have a major relapse, I don’t really trust him to treat me. I actually had a small relapse over the Christmas period but he refused to believe it was possible I did because I didn’t also have a headache at the time.

To be honest I’m finding all my doctors here, except my gynaecologist, to be sub-standard. I had to tell my gastroenterologist what medication to prescribe me because he wasn’t sure and my General Practice doctor keeps wanting to refer me to a psychiatrist because I happen to have two chronic health issues and he can barely be bothered to treat me for any other issues that might crop up. It’s a damn good thing I have a degree in medical science and can do my own research into my health issues as I feel I am getting no help from the actual medical professionals. Is anybody else having the same problem with their doctors in Germany or have I just had bad luck to keep finding the crap ones?

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6 thoughts on “Perhaps I Need A New Neurologist

  1. I find it incredibly difficult to find a good doctor, though I would say the same about treatment in America. It always strikes me as totally shocking, but I guess it is just a mistake to put the humans behind a specific profession on a pedastol, which I feel like I was taught to do with doctors. I’ve had some incredibly incompetent doctor’s in Germany too, though nothing as disturbing as a total lack of disregard for medication details. Ugh. Good luck finding a better doctor though!

  2. You need a new doctor. Definitely. And you need to put reviews out there about this particular doctor that warn other people who might go out there.
    I went to one GP, German, here– and it was awful! I swapped to a lovely Irish lady and things are going swimmingly. German medicine for all intents and purposes seems to be about 20 years behind Australia…

  3. I find it very strange that I’ve been to the doctor four times and I have never been asked my medical history. I have a range of conditions for which I take meds and I did bring a few months worth with me from Australia.

    The second last time I went to doctor here, I needed a repeat of my antidepressant. I got a very brief assessment (no problem luckily considering my Deutsch is not brilliant) and then we discovered that they don’t issue the drug in 50mg like in Australia, only 37.5mg and 75mg. We opted for the lower dosage which meant that i was tired all the time and a bit flat which was gradually becoming more debilitating. I went back to the doctor last week, was asked what I needed at the front desk, I explained it was a medication repeat but that I needed a higher dose, the woman (not sure if she was a nurse or doctor) went into a back room and came out with a prescription. The whole thing took about 5 mins. Very convenient but also a bit odd really. God knows how I will fare when it’s time for a pap smear!

    • I also didn’t get much of a medical history done when I went to see my Hausarzt for the first time for repeats of medication that was prescribed to me in Australia. In fact, my Hausarzt couldn’t even bother going to the effort of finding out what the medication was called in Germany, she told me to go and find out myself and then to come back and tell her. Needless to say I changed my Hausarzt pretty quickly after that.

      Something to note about getting a pap smear, unlike in Australia where they are done by your GP, in Germany they are only done by a gynaecologist, so you will need to find yourself a Frauenarzt.

  4. I lived in a tiny town in Germany. My dentist was superb, as was the GP, although I only saw him twice in five years.
    I’m still impressed with the sports medicine specialist who treated my sports injury and I saw multiple times through to completion.
    My eye doctor, however, makes me cringe over seven years later. His staff was superb, but he was a pompous a**. I think it’s the matter of finding the right one. As I only went to the eye guy once a year and he seemed competent, I sucked it up. If it would have been something more important or his medical competency was lacking, I would have dumped him in a flash.

  5. Your neurologist might need a neurologist ;)
    But seriously, chose a new one, and as with everything, don’t cling to the first best doctor, if they’re not what you expect, you need to change. Nobody will hinder you.
    As to pharmaceuticals with different names, you’d better ask a pharmacist.

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