Building Trust With Practitioners

I recently treated a teenager who had learned to mistrust her doctors. Though she clearly was suffering from a severely debilitating case of Fibro, many of the physicians she had consulted had been derailed by her obesity. Instead of viewing her weight as a symptom (one of many) of Fibro, the doctors had decided the presenting pathology was obesity. Not only was this unhelpful to the diagnostic process, it delayed treatment and was humiliating and harmful to the already suffering child; somewhere between insensitive and negligent, at the very least it was not good medicine.As with all things adolescent, trust is imperative in the treatment of Fibro/CFS. The more information the doctors have, the more effective the treatment process will be. The key to gleaning pertinent information from the adolescent patient is good listening. If she feels heard and taken seriously, she will tell you what you need to know. If he feels stupid or judged, he will shut down. In the famous words of Sean Covey (adult son of “7 Habits” author Stephen Covey): Listen more than you talk. You have two ears and one mouth. Duh!

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