WARNING to all us baby boomers about our parents doctors

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-24-1997
WARNING to all us baby boomers about our parents doctors
5
Sat, 08-31-2013 - 6:52pm

Hope all of you are sitting down for this.  My FIL (93 yrs. & going strong) previously had a prostate operation or procedure back in Dec.  He was OK at first, but over the last 7 months or so, he was complaining of pain during and after urination.  He visited same doctor and no change.  Recently switched doctors and currently in hospital to find out what's wrong.  We thought it was the prostate.  Well, this doctor told us the nurse at the previous hospital FAILED to remove the entire catheter.  Apparently, there was a piece of catheter left in him which he never realized.  So at this point, his prostate is mostly gone, he has kidney infection or inflamation and the current doctor explained his kidney possibly got infected from the catheter.

The issue is my FIL is a bit stubborn but he is very trusting of physicians.  His attitude is not to question and to do whatever the doctors say.  He also believes doctors don't make mistakes.  Obviously, my husband & I have been trying to get him to switch doctors for years and every time we want to question the doctor, if my FIL is in our presence, we're basically told to shut up.

For us baby boomers, we don't take anything for granted and we've grown up to question everything.  But for WWII veterans, their generation was entirely different.  It was you did what you were told and shut your mouth and respect your elders.  So what's adult children in their 50's and 60's supposed to do with their elderly parents?  At best, we're working hard at our jobs + making sure our parents are comfortable and have everything they need.  At worst, we're told we don't visit them enough or they don't get to see their grandkids enough. 

As for any lawsuit or medical malpractice, yes this case qualifies, but my FIL is upset with what happened but refuses to do anything about it.  Tomorrow, he will be released & we get to take him home. 

As for my other issue with unemployment, would you believe I got chewed out by my own mother (89 yrs.).  I swear, our parents are elderly but you still feel like a child.  So I'm tempted to visit unemployment Tues., either apply for SEAP or just tell them I'm working and close my file.  Too much stress at this point.  Let me get dressed and go for my evening walk.  Didn't do the treadmill today - too humid.

Kathy

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998

Ugh, Kathy, that's horrifying, but I think it's all too common for that generation not to question their physicians. My mother, at 75, still uses an estrogen patch and gets her period (yes, can you imagine having a period at that age?) and when I gently suggest that she question her doctor about it, she gets very defensive. I'm going thru perimenopause/menopause now and I can tell you that if I still have a period in, say, 5 years, I'm more than willing to have a hysterectomy.

 

Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998

Ashley, could you accompany your mom to her next visit with that doctor? Then you can bring up the issue and help to get it resolved....it may just require an adjustment of medication (possibly the progesterone) or could indicate a problem, but the doc needs to know. If you cannot go along, you  might be able to call and leave a message for the doctor. While s/he cannot discuss her case with you without your mom's consent, s/he should be able to listen to what you report and then decide if action is required. This might be a good time to get consent forms signed anyway.

Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998

Kathy, good that they figured out what was wrong with your FIL and that he is recovering. I hope that now he'll allow your dh/you to be more involved in his care.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998

My mom lives in Seattle and I live in Massachusetts, which is what makes this a challenge. But this is a minor thing right now, as we are all dealing with the death of my father, who died Monday night after a long battle with prostate cancer. She's having a memorial service instead of a funeral in October, so when we go out for that, I'm going to address some of her own medical issues, such as her need for a hearing aid! And the doc does know about her periods and says that while this is rare, it's not harmful, which makes me wonder if she's a bit of a quack!

Avatar for suzyk2118
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-30-1997

{{{{hugs}}}}