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Maybe apnea, CPAP intolerant

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Fixing the medical system

Postby GaryM » Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:34 pm

I have a theory about unresponsive doctors, but it is rather unpleasant. If you would prefer not to be jaded, please stop here.

Basically, it comes down to an incompatibility between health care and capitalism. The goal of capitalism is to gain the most money in the least amount of time with the least effort. The goal of health care should be to make people well. The two are in opposition. They should not be since healthy people cost less money, but that is not how the books are done.

It gets really bad from here. You might want to stop reading, seriously.

The doctors have expenses such as the office, staff, insurance, supplies, and it is a lot of money. They are being squeezed by the insurance companies to cut down on expenses. Some doctors have simply decided to take up highly repeatable and profitable procedures such as colonoscopies or mammograms. There are medical practices which specialize in just one of these two. It is quick system to get 'em in and get 'em out, and there is no need to worry about making someone better. It is just a test and not a treatment. It is a good business model. Henry Ford would be proud. It is a terrible model for providing health care.

Clearly, not every doctor does that. However, they can't afford to work with complex problems. They don't get paid to make people well. They get paid for procedures. So, when the initial, simple treatment does not work, there is no incentive for them to actually investigate what else might help.

I would like to believe they are compassionate, but the doctors have been very up front in saying their compassion and empathy was beaten out of them in medical school and residency. They won't say that in the office. You have to meet them in a social situation where you are not their patient.

From the patient's perspective, the doctor tries one or two obvious things then gives up. If the patient complains, he will be told that the problem is stress or depression or low fiber diet or something else where the blame can be placed on the patient. That has been a very consistent experience for me.

To be fair, I believe most doctors don't understand their position in the situation. They certainly don't think of themselves as greedy or bad people at all. I think they presume there is some other doctor out there that might help, but they can't do it themselves. They can't afford it. They are doing all they can do, but they are constrained by business considerations.

As it is, medical practices resemble a fast food restaurant. If I go in for a burger and fries, I can get that. Any sleep specialist will sell a CPAP. If I want a time consuming an delicate souffle, I'm in the wrong place. I need a real chef, not a burger flipper who relies on his income from a soulless corporation. In the case of medicine, it is a network of organizations and corporations which pressure each other to sell their soul for money.

This is a very tangled problem, and I really don't know how to improve it even if I had power and/or money to do something. Simply exposing the problem will put all parties on the defensive and blame would be pushed away, and each party will push away from each other when the solution requires cooperation of the people and institutions involved. Even if we could get them in a drum circle singing kumbaya, I don't know what to suggest.

I understand that Dr. House is a brilliant but socially maladjusted physician. I don't think he would make an agreement happen. I've never seen that show, but I've heard of it. I'm currently spending my spare time learning medicine so I can get some do-it-yourself health care going.

can I rant, or what?
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Re: Maybe apnea, CPAP intolerant

Postby jasmin » Sat Oct 29, 2011 11:16 am

Hahaha, it's a good rant and you're probably right :D
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Re: Maybe apnea, CPAP intolerant

Postby DanielleSchwartz » Sat Jul 25, 2015 2:24 pm

Even though the CPAP is one of the best snoring solutions out there for sleep apnea, it's not necessarily for everyone. On my journey with sleep apnea, I've learned that everyone has different reasons for why they snore or have difficulty breathing while sleeping. That being said, the solution to everyone's problem will be different.

The great thing is, there are some other great solutions compared to using the CPAP. *mod edit* Also, do you know where the problem is stemming from? Knowing that will definitely help you find the best snoring solution for you.

Good luck!
Last edited by Oliveira on Wed Jul 29, 2015 8:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Spam content removed
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Re: Maybe apnea, CPAP intolerant

Postby skilsaw » Fri Oct 23, 2015 12:07 am

Here is my cynical view of doctors not calling back or providing test results.

There is no money to be made by calling someone to tell them they are healthy.
There is no money to be made by provide test results saying someone is healthy.

I'm in a quandry right now. My doctor referred me to a clinic for mild sleep apnea. However, the clinic does both tests and sell CPAP machines. That is a conflict of interest. There is a strong motivation for them to recommend CPAP machines to people who only have a very mild problem who will only achieve a small improvement at best.
It is not always possible to make someone's discomfort go away.
Sometimes, the best thing we can do is resist the urge to fix it and instead just say, "You, too?"
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