Doctors have a Huge Impact: For Good or For Bad

Posted on Mar 13, 2019 by Leonardo Oliveira

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My name is Leonardo Olivia and I am a technical support manager here at Solutionreach. Today, I want to share some of the ways doctors have impacted my life—in both good and bad ways. My favorite doctor of all time goes back to my athletic days. While playing soccer for Salt Lake Community College in the 2007 Regional Championship in Oregon, I sustained a complete tear of my right knee ACL, severely damaging my MCL and partial tear of my meniscus. I was scared and frustrated with the timing of the injury as I had just recovered from an ankle fracture the year before. Imagine that, married for a little over a year and now I found myself for a second time potentially headed to crutches and physical therapy. I scheduled an appointment with an Orthopedic doctor, who assessed my knee and told me that the ACL felt injured but not fully torn - the doctors recommendation at that point was to have me go back and play - "if it buckles and tears a second time, then we will do surgery".

There I went - for the last time that year - to play a soccer game. Within 25 minutes of playing, after jumping in the air for a ball, upon landing, my knee gave in and left me dealing with excruciating pain. Did I go back to that doctor? NO! This time around, I did my research, rather than just going to the closest orthopedic doctor near me. And that's how I met Dr Vern Cooley, a seasoned surgeon that had names such as Tiger Woods come through his OR.

Though my wait was a bit long, within the hour I was in the office, I had already gotten an x-ray and an MRI done. Dr Cooley came into the room with his full entourage, it was quite impressive. Dr Cooley took57055549523__32A77DB6-EE58-4CD5-A338-D18CED43639B time to listen, he empathized with that fact that this was my second big injury in a year. He assessed my knee and had his PA do the same so they could compare each others opinions of the injury. Within seconds, it was determined I needed surgery, which was scheduled the following week.

Dr Cooley is the type of individual you meet and immediately want to be best friends with, he makes the room light up and his attention and care really makes you feel like you are in the friendliest and most qualified hands. About a year later, I went back and played for a consecutive 3 seasons taking the league MVP and top scorer. Grateful for doctors that are above all human and out for the patients best interest.

My worst experience

In 2017, my wife and I were victims of a life-changing incident while celebrating our anniversary abroad. The impact of this event caused severe PTSD to my wife and changed much of her day-to-day ability to carry on with a normal and healthy life. Upon returning to the U.S., my wife scheduled a visit with our former primary care doctor to get checked and obtain referrals to specialists she was needing at the time.

To our surprise, not only was the doctor insensitive to my wife's request for having a female present in the room, but the doctor went to the extent of shaming her for what had happened and told her to bounce back up rather then focus on feeling sad, in a very insensitive tone. PTSD is much more than feeling sad and this doctor did not have common sense or tact to help us through such a tough time. I am not sure if the doctor was just having a bad day, but after four years of calling him our primary care doctor, we decided to leave the practice. It is so important that doctors are sensitive to the feelings of their patients.

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