Has anyone attended any of the teaching hospitals as a thyroid patient and if so did they just feel like a statistic waiting to go into a report that someone wants published? I definitely get that feeling. There seems to be no empathy and this disease is trivialized at every stage. Is it because they deal with larger numbers of patients compared to local hospitals? Do endocrinologists deal with hospitalised patients and the reason they are so matter of fact is because they have not developed a "bedside manner?" I am just trying to fathom why the hospital I visit seems such a cold and uncaring place.

37 Replies

  • hi there , yes my lady is currently attending a teaching hospital in London , if you pm me I will forward the details to you , and we have never had the feelings that you are experiencing ------not all are like that ,but some are unfortunately ......it is OUR job to weed the idiots out !!! LoL alan x

  • I so agree Chicken, I'm not sure of the definition of a teaching hospital but the one I attend in Cornwall,who have registrars for a year,as part of their training,definitely has the same attitude. I have never been so insulted as when I attend this clinic.

  • Beaton, I firmly agree with you in terms of cornwall, I have not had the pleasure meeting a team member for treatment for hashimotos. I refused to see a endo only because he disregarded my private blood test and he was private. If you have any joy get in touch.

  • I go to Bristol Royal Infirmary teaching hospital and found it excellent. Endo's really listened were prepared to let you make some decisions and happy for me to contact them if I am at all concerned. Cannot fault it. Would rather have teaching hospital anyday...

  • Wow, lucky you. Turns out I go to the same place as chickens. Hospital has good reputation generally but that's two completely unrelated people who have never met or had contact with each other until I pm'd her last night and we both feel exactly the same.

    I also met someone way back at the start of my treatment who had been attending the same thyroid clinic for years, when I told her I hadn't cared much for the first guy I saw, said 'I wouldn't worry about that, you'll never see him again' and I haven't.

  • Helps if you go with someone who is smartly suited and booted (always makes doctors a bit more wary) and sits there with a journalist's notepad taking notes. Has questions lined up....and writes answers down. Do it in very calm way - not you necessarily but the person with you....if I ever go on my own always take notepad and write stuff down. It helps all round because they see you are serious about meeting with them. It works for me.....

  • Oh and I also do a web check on consultants to see who they are where they trained and what experience they have, sometime mention something about that and they again see you are prepared to be serious about putting your health in someone else's hands...

  • I did all that although I went in on my own - I don't see why I should have to take someone suited, booted and clutching a notepad in order to be treated respectfully. I am an intelligent professional woman who would not expect to be treated as anything less.

    I was smartly dressed (always am). Had my notebook with all my facts and figures and questions written down as recommended on here and took notes of my blood results with ranges etc.

    In fact on my first visit when antibodies were mentioned in the lecture I was getting (nothing I hadn't read or found out about on here) I said ' Do you mean like in Graves?' and the guy looked at me in amazement, pointed to me and said 'Yes, Graves, that's what you've got, Graves' I had the feeling that if I hadn't mentioned it neither would he. I also had a distinct feeling that had I taken my husband in with me this guy would have talked to him rather than to me.

    The minute my hospital appointment came through I looked up my consultant, knew all about their qualifications, everything / anything mentioned about them, even knew what they looked like, I even knew what room my person was consulting in from having looked at the notice board for the day while I was waiting to book in, so there I was sitting right beside it then I was called to a different room by a completely different person, so as I didn't actually get to meet the person I was expecting to meet then all that effort was effort.

  • Hi Liz, am sorry did not mean to offend....it sounds like you did all the right things... and best laid plans with endo went awry..... I just feel vulnerable when I go to hospital and happier when have someone with me who looks like they are on your side - like going to court with a lawyer.....it;s worked for me but is not meant to insult anyone who feels confident enough to do this on their own....x

  • Not offended but what happens to poor little people who are not able to do all that sort of research all that for themselves?

    NHS treatment for the masses and how you are treated ought not to depend on how you present yourself.

    Your email actually made me snigger because years ago my son who was a very young 16 had a problem at a hotel where he was working and my husband did exactly what you suggested.

    He and a family friend who was a real union man who also worked in employment went along to my son's place of work to find out exactly what was going on, the friend went in carrying a notebook.

    The duty manager thought my husband (who was straight from work and was suited and booted) and who only introduced the friend by name thought my husband had taken his lawyer along with him. The under manager actually wanted the friend / lawyer to leave but eventually said he could stay as long as he didn't take notes.

    The whole event was a storm in a teacup and everything was sorted out there and then but it showed me the value of doing that sort of thing you suggested.

    It might be an idea and maybe even easier if I wereto take my other half in with me but I am very bloody minded and don't see why I should have to do that just to be treated properly. :-)

  • completely agree with you Liz, often thought could offer service to people who feel scared of medical profession and just sit and support them. My years of being a journalist taught me importance of writing things down and a notebook always seemed to put people on best behaviour. It must be awful for people who sit there and doctors can do whatever they like - even if it's best intentions....I saw my notes briefly and it had 'journalist' ringed on them in red.....I've always been much better at fighting other people's battles than my own so it was good to have husband with me being very quiet and writing....x

  • Brilliant - so funny, love the idea that you are marked out in red. I can't imagine a career more likely to spook them

  • apart from poor pay it has many benefits.....

  • OMG!! I'm so going to put "journalist" down as my occupation from now on on anything medical to see if it makes a difference

    and thanks for the notebook idea, I'm going to do that too, I always have paper and pen to make notes, more because I forget everything theyve said because I'm so stressed being there, I did tinker with the idea of a dictaphone previously, I may still get one lol

  • Me too.

  • dicatphone good.... be careful about being journalist though..... best to get very smart professional friend who looks the part, the more I learn of life the more I realise how much acting has its benefits....x

  • Yes, the guy who went along with my husband didn't say anything about being a lawyer - don't think he even spoke, just sat there with his notebook and pen and for some reason or another the guy just assumed he was. Probably because he knew he was totally in the wrong. We only heard about it later when someone mentioned something to our son about ' your dad and his lawyer'.

  • it works, as long as it's gently done.... x

  • Last time I went I thought about taking my iPad to make notes on - see what they made if that, but I have always just taken in a notebook and pen.

  • notebook better, less of technical faff

  • I attended the endocrinoology dept at one of the London teaching hospitals and the Prof that I saw was terrible and I felt sorry for the student who sat in on the consult who was totally ignored - she may as well have been wallpaper. The whole experience was dreadful and I came away furious and upset that the Prof had spent nearly the whole time looking at the computer screen while he talked at me and showed little interest in what I had to say and poohpoohed anything I brought up about different hypo treatments. He was very much one of those medics with the 'I am God, and you should sit at my feet listening to my pearls of wisdom' attitude.

    I came away quite angry and shocked because the experiences I have had in other departments in the hospital (uro-gynaecology, neurology, orthopaedics, A&E have been the absolute opposite with wonderful collaborative consults and treatments and highly informative when students were around because they were always brought into the discussion.

    So clearly, there are good departments and bad departments in teaching hospitals. Really everything stems from the top - like in business - with a department taking on the personality and ethos of whoever is at the top.

  • Funnily enough your final comment is exactly what I said to my husband last night. It all comes down to the man at the very top. :-)

  • Wow it's a small world. I travel about 50 miles to go to this hospital. From the blurb that I have read I thought it was a high tech cutting edge hopital. I have heard fantastic stories from other people regarding their experiences. My neighbours life has been saved because they performed a pioneering operation unrelated to thyroid I must add.

    I think this department has definitely lost its way. Into reports and statistics. They have forgotten why they are there to treat the patient. You cannot get hold of them if you wish to discuss anything outside of your appointment. So matter of fact about everything. When the "experienced" consultant comes into the consultation they have the annoying habit of picking up on part of a sentence that you have just said, taking it out of context and repeating it to suit themselves. When you try to correct them they talk over you.

    And so the circle continues as they are training tomorrows consultants. Frightening!

  • Said exactly the same thing about endos of the future to my husband too. Suspect he is about to get fed up with my thoughts on how to run a department and treat patients.

  • I just looked up my hospital in Truro,yes it is a teaching hospital. I also found a paper on South West Hospitals. In the endo. dept. there is no mention of thyroid. It only mentioned diabetes and obesity. :(

  • I think the endocrine umbrella covers a lot of ailments such as diabetes, thyroid and pituitary and you don't always see these individually mentioned in some hospitals.

  • I appreciate the umbrella. The thyroid clinic is held in the diabetic unit,there is a lot of literature and posters on diabetes but nothing on thyroid. Thyroid is the Cinderella of endocrinology.

  • :(

  • Have you tried printing out the Thyroid UK poster available here and taking it in to your surgery?

    I recently took one in to reception in my surgery and they have happily displayed it on a notice board.I have also made my GP aware that my Endo is enthusiastic about Thyroid UK too.

  • I like that Cinderella of endocrinology

  • Thanks.

  • I dont think this has anything to do with teaching hospitals per se but unfortunately that most (I know they're not all bad bad but I've yet to find a good one) doctors have this attitude - aloof, uncaring and only concerned with what's on a computer screen and blood results. I've experienced this with every nhs gp and consultant ive seen over the past years of having this illness. To be honest I thought it was just me, I thought there must be something about me, some weird 'aura' or whatever that made doctors dislike me on sight. That was until I went with my mum to her appointment with a gastroenterologist - I was actually shocked at the way he treated her and ended up in tears afterwards. We waited an hour or more to be seen and then he was rude, condescending and practically shoved us out of his office within 2 minutes. I've come to the conclusion that 'bedside manner' went out with Carry on Doctor in the 60's but really it's not acceptable that patients are not listened to, respected and sometimes not even looked at. By the way, if anything I bother less with my appearance when I go an appointment - your appearance is always noted "this well presented lady....." on your records and I think it can go against you because they think you look fine. I suppose my thinking is that looking a bit unkempt might go in my favour. No evidence of that working yet though!

  • I'm under the third hedge on the left! ;)

  • The Endos at the hospital I attend are not enthused with this site. When I mentioned this site an alternative was suggested. I could put it up for badness! I have spoken to people in the waiting room and told them to go on it.

  • Go on the bad site- or this one?

  • I've had two appointments at a teaching hospital. The first endo I was fine and asked for more (relevant) blood tests. The second was awful. She spent most of the appointment ranting about unrelated things and tried to tell me that there was nothing wrong with me. She started clutching at straws and diagnosed my freckles as "discolouration" so arranged a short synacthen test. I won't be seeing here again!

  • I tell everyone I know how fantastic this site is.

You may also like...