I’m going to get a little personal on this post, so forgive me if I wander into “TMI territory”.
At our 20 week morphology scan, it was discovered that I have multiple fibroids in my uterus. These are, for lack of a better description, little benign tumours (today the Obstetrician described them as “like the grisly bits on a T-Bone” – gross) in the uterine wall. Overall they’re pretty common in women of childbearing age but the problem is I have lots, and some of them are pretty big, and growing.
Fast forward three weeks, and I was referred by my midwife to see the Obstetrician again. She’s the best in the biz, I was told, and she’ll sort it out. Well. She was too busy to see me so I had the obstetrics registrar handle me instead (that’s the way of the public system) and while she seemed like a nice woman, I wouldn’t say things went well. This poor lady was trying to comfort me without giving me too much information about my condition in case she said the wrong thing, so the nervous gems she gave me instead were: “well your fetus is viable now so if it was born now it would have a god chance” and “if not we might just have to do a c-section at 36 weeks, no problem”… then the worst: “it looks as if growth has slowed, we’ll need to do another scan straight away”.
Hang on a minute. You tell this to a confused, hormonal pregnant woman who has NOT gone through years and years of medical training and she hears: “your baby’s not growing. Something’s wrong with your baby. Your baby is going to be severely premature. DANGER!” And also, just quietly – no, I’m not a doctor but I’m not silly enough to think that my baby can be born at 23 weeks and I can absolutely expect him to grow up unscathed. Thanks anyway. Had the scan and no, he’s not big, but he’s not small either. He is bang on 50th percentile and I’m okay with that as I’m not exactly wishing for a ten-pounder.
We’re now at 26 weeks and today I was able to see the Obstetrician I was originally referred to. She alleviated many of the concerns we had and answered our questions thoroughly and thoughtfully and I would be more than happy to see her again.
Don’t get me wrong, all young doctors have to learn somehow, and maybe I was a bit of a baptism of fire for this particular young registrar, but I wish someone was there to supervise a little because I think most pregnant ladies and their partners would agree, that kind of stress is not needed!
I was talking to a friend of mine the other day who is only a couple of years out of medical school and he was saying that studies had been done on what makes most people in hospitals trust the doctors. Was it a white coat? A certain feature? Something they said? Turns out it was just a stethoscope around their neck. Seriously! For me though? It’s a doctor who looks me in the eye and gives me a confident greeting. From there, if they can take control and make me feel like they’re working for the best possible outcome or me and not expecting the worst, that’s how I know I’m in good hands. Seems pretty simple really.