What do you think about professionals who don't know the answer?

  • commoncoll

    Posts: 1222

    Apr 21, 2011 7:41 PM GMT
    I went to the doctor with my aunt. She had an uncommon condition of glaucoma-not a serious condition for her age. The physician admitted he didn't know much about it.

    My aunt was very disappointed in that "ignorant idiot."

    While in some cases that may be true but I felt my aunt's behavior was unwarranted. She was a bit hostile to the doctor after that, and I ended up apologizing before we left.

    What do you think about that? Would your opinion differ if it was someone else like a car mechanic or an electrician?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 21, 2011 7:51 PM GMT
    What type of doctor was he? General or Ophthalmologist?

    If Ophthalmologist, I'd find a new one, Pronto!

    To your last question: not every mechanic knows everything...but if your car 'dies' you can just buy a new one!
    icon_lol.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 21, 2011 9:11 PM GMT
    Professionals are not walking encyclopedias, horn books, and treatises. We have our own specialties. Occasionally we have to consult our colleagues or do supplemental research in order to address an issue. In some cases, the answer(s) may not be readily apparent, or the issue/problem may be sui generis.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 21, 2011 9:23 PM GMT
    I hate it when people think doctors know everything; treat them like some kind of God. At least this one was honest and didn't make shit up from some article he read or saw on TV.
    I've been trying to get my parents to drop they're GP for years.
    If they don't know the answers then find someone who does; two or three would be even better.
  • iHavok

    Posts: 1477

    Apr 21, 2011 9:27 PM GMT
    Yeah his honesty makes me trust him more than some doctor guessing and bullshitting to hide his lack of knowledge.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 21, 2011 10:11 PM GMT
    The good thing is he admitted he didn't know much about it. Just because someone has an M.D. or PhD doesn't mean they are experts. Most patients only remember 50% of what they are told and not in any sort of factual order.
  • commoncoll

    Posts: 1222

    Apr 22, 2011 2:08 AM GMT
    StudlyScrewRite said What type of doctor was he? General or Ophthalmologist?

    If Ophthalmologist, I'd find a new one, Pronto!

    To your last question: not every mechanic knows everything...but if your car 'dies' you can just buy a new one!
    icon_lol.gif

    He was an opthamologist. I'm surprised you think that way. I would rather that he admit he doesn't know and find out the real answer, rather than make something up with no clue as to the justification behind it.

    I thought he was a great person and a great physician, keep in mind I have no medical training whatsoever. He was quite young. As I said, this was a relatively rare condition. He knew the treatment and he figured out what was wrong. He had all the pertinent information. She asked him the prevalence of her kind of glaucoma. To his credit, he did look up the answers to the questions he didn't know.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:09 AM GMT
    You must remember to be humble. The point is that I will not respect them less. Most patients are just as smart as the doctor and can tell when the doctor fibs.

    The newly trained physicians, especially from the last decade, are trained in evidence-based medicine and are taught that it won't kill you to admit you don't know the answer. A lot of the older physicians have also jumped on the bandwagon. This only improves patient care, and I hope you don't think less of someone who has the guts to realize their shortcoming.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:13 AM GMT
    haha wow I think that your aunt had expectations and those expectations were not met. Next time maybe tell her to have more of an open mind. I agree - at least this doctor didn't try to BS his way through the situation. Transparency is key especially when it comes to a personal physician. Without it you can't trust him/her.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:15 AM GMT
    DOMINUS said sui generis.


    You lawyer, you. ;-)
  • markwho40

    Posts: 8

    Apr 22, 2011 4:21 AM GMT
    defind a professional because it makes you think as to whats the real meaning as to what or whos a professional because it seems that any body these days can say that they are a professtional but do they really mean it its though these days to get a good dr. dentist or any kind of professionals so think about it and defind what really a professional is really these days
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:28 AM GMT
    I will give another example. As an insurance agent, alot folks expect me to know every single rule there is about the policies on command. Impossible. Somethings require research. While I would expect an eye doctor to know about glaucoma, one may not since it is primarily a geriatric disease, but there are cases found in younger folks. I appreciate the honesty and can respect some for owning up to not knowing rather just putting something out there, particularly when health is involved.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:29 AM GMT
    It wouldn't really surprise me. I did once go to a doctor about a problem, and he said "Wow, it's been a while. I'll have to step over to my office and look that up." Then he came back and regurgitated exactly what I'd read on the internet before I came to see him. Just gimme the prescription.

    On the other hand, I do get a lot of clients in tin-foil hats, raving to me about the latest nonsense that they read on the internet. I sometimes try to interject a bit of reality, but really adamant ones, the only way to get rid of them is "well, that's outside the scope of the services that we offer. If you'd like to continue discussing it, we'll have to apply the hourly consulting fee." (Maybe triple.)
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:30 AM GMT
    its actually a sign of a good doctor. The worst kinds are the ones that would rather have you believe they know evverything then take the ego hit and admit to being out of their area of expertise.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:38 AM GMT
    dekiruman saidits actually a sign of a good doctor. The worst kinds are the ones that would rather have you believe they know evverything then take the ego hit and admit to being out of their area of expertise.



    Yep.........very true....best to say, "I don't know", and refer you to someone with more expertise as regards your particular malady.................
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 4:39 AM GMT
    DOMINUS saidProfessionals are not walking encyclopedias, horn books, and treatises. We have our own specialties. Occasionally we have to consult our colleagues or do supplemental research in order to address an issue. In some cases, the answer(s) may not be readily apparent, or the issue/problem may be sui generis.


    This!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 5:28 AM GMT
    Dont rely on regular doctors who generalize things like most do. For example, I have soar throat, the doctor would probably answer saying you have the cold when it could be something else. If it was a specialist, then he is not very good one.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 6:40 AM GMT
    The doctor did the first step right by admitting that he didn't know.
    The important thing is for any professional who doesn't know the answer is to either tell you that he'll do his research and get back to you or refer you to someone who does know.

    You might remind your aunt that she must be an ignorant idiot too, since she doesn't know about her condition either.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Apr 22, 2011 9:04 AM GMT
    heybreaux saidI don't mind someone saying "I don't know," and I do that myself in my profession. But I follow up and communicate, which are paramount. If it turns out there is not an answer of a complexity, I at least try to explain.

    THIS!^^^^

    I have a massive furnace (40 000 cubic feet/minute) that was purposely designed without a filter a decade ago when it was installed. For reasons that I will not touch on here, I decided that I need filters added. When I contacted the rep he told me that he needed to touch base with the manufacturer to see if I need to install larger motors to drive the fans if I put a filter on the unit. This is acceptable.

    I have had a racking specialist in recently who has misdiagnosed the capacity (which would have cost tens of thousands if I did not double check his work.) I assume he did this because he did not want to admit that he did not know the charts off the top of his head. This is not acceptable.

    I don't know why more "professionals" can not just admit that they do not have the answer on hand; why they can not just say they need to get back to me or do not know but will do some research...

    I would prefer my doctor did the same- admit that he does not know everything and tell me that he needs to research the condition a little.