I imagine by now everyone is familiar with the following terms:
Big Oil, Big Money, Big Tech, Big Food etc..
But when was the last time you thought about Big Medicine, or Big Pill,
or Big Doc or Big Hospital?
There was a time not so long ago when I had total confidence in the Medical industry. I assumed that everyone acted in accordance with the Hippocratic Oath, the same way I acted according to professional standards in my career.
An incident three years ago caused me to re-consider my opinion.
As briefly as I can state it, I experienced significant abdominal pain one evening after dinner. The pain was excruciating. I raced to the nearest hospital where X-Rays were taken and much pushing was done on the right side of my abdomen. The doctor concluded that a 12mm stone was trying to pass through a 4mm opening in my Gall Bladder. He diagnosed it as a Gall Stone. He wrote me a prescription for painkillers (non-opioid Thank God) and gave me the number of a “specialist” who would help me plan a course of treatment. The hospital doctor also told me I would continue to experience pain until the time of my appointment with the specialist and that I should keep the pills handy and take them as needed.
The first thing I did when I got home was research “Gall Stones.” I wanted to know what they were, how they were formed and what treatments were available.
Gall Stones are primarily composed of cholesterol. I won’t get into the science of it, but essentially they are the by-product of the S.A.D. – Standard American Diet. Gallstones are where some of the extra fat from your cheeseburgers, pizzas, french fries, ice cream etc..etc..etc..go to hang out.
Treatment-wise there weren’t a whole lot of traditional options available. In fact, there was only one – surgery.
The only alternative to surgery was Alternative Medicine – specifically Apple Cider Vinegar. Several different websites touted the benefits of ACV (with the Mother, look it up) as a cure for Gallstones. Basically, by drinking the prescribed amount and following the regimen, the ACV would dissolve the stones and restore my body to health. With over three weeks until my meeting with the specialist I decided to follow the ACV regimen figuring it couldn’t make matters any worse.
The ACV alone tasted awful so I mixed 1 ounce with 8 ounces of Organic apple juice and drank the mixture three times a day for the first week. The second and third weeks I reduced my intake to one glass a day per instruction. I also avoided all the greasy foods I’d been eating before. I ate more fish and tuna, more fruits and salads, ate Walnuts, other healthy snacks and drank a lot of water.
I ended up taking three of the pain pills I was prescribed over the course of the first three days after my hospital visit, but I didn’t have a need for them after that.
The pain went away.
By the time the day arrived for my meeting with the “Specialist” I felt great. I hadn’t had any pain at all. I couldn’t wait to discuss my results with the doctor.
Boy was I disappointed.
When I told him about my the results of my “alternative treatment” he just threw a weird smile at me and said, “those things are fine in moderation, I guess, but let’s talk about your long-term health.”
I said, “What do you mean? I feel fine now.”
“I can’t talk to you about “alternative treatments” but I can tell you your Gall Bladder is shot – it’s dead and not functioning and it needs to be removed. Let’s schedule your surgery for two weeks from next Tuesday, okay?”
“No,” I said, “it’s not okay. I feel fine. Besides, if my Gall Bladder isn’t functioning why is it trying to push the stone through?” He didn’t answer me. I continued. “The ACV dissolved my stones, I’ve changed my diet and I don’t need surgery. Why can’t we have this discussion? You’re my doctor. Shouldn’t everything be on the table regarding my health?”
He said, “As your doctor, I can not endorse “alternative treatments” because they aren’t consistent with modern medicine. My recommendation is removal of the Gall Bladder.”
In my research it was suggested there were links between the removal of the G B and increased risk for the development of cancer of the Small Intestine, Large Intestine and Colon due to the “drip” of bile from the missing G B directly into the Intestines. The doctor replied that those studies were inconclusive and as far as he was concerned the removal of my G B was a greater concern.
I sat there quietly for a minute before telling the doctor I would not be going through with the surgery and how very disappointed I was that he wouldn’t even discuss my improved condition. It felt like he just wanted to put me on the “surgery conveyor belt” so he could make next month’s yacht payment. I got up from the exam table, walked out and never saw him again.
That was over three years ago and I haven’t experienced any pain since then. I still drink my ACV mixture a couple of times a week, manage my diet and exercise moderately.
This whole rotten experience got me to thinking about for-profit medicine and whether the best interests of the patient are always the first priority.
Please read this story:
and this story:
**Originally Posted on 5 Jan 2018**