One example is when I recently completed a Pap exam on a lady who last had one at the birth of her son 24 years ago! What bad thing will I see?… I wondered, a bit anxious for the patient. Blessedly, other than her obesity issue
she had a normal exam.
Another nice middle aged lady was not as fortunate. She came in saying she had ‘hemorrhoids issues’ for the past 7 or so years and more recently thought she had developed a groin hernia. I was the first medical provider she had been able to see in nearly a decade.
During the exam however, her rectal check showed that the patient had been grossly underestimating her symptoms . What she thought were hemorrhoids was actually a large ugly rectal mass that turned out to be a malignancy (rectal cancer to be premise).
That groin hernia was actually a large swollen lymph node due to the cancer spreading there. Though late in getting her diagnosis, with immediate surgery, chemotherapy and radiation she is now recovering with her colostomy.
She can be modestly optimistic of her prognosis as she is only in her mid 40’s and has no other medical issues. She got her life saving health insurance just in the nick of time.
Though I have my hang ups about the whole ACA “Obamacare” policies (everyone has a right to her opinion), one thing I know from my own practice already is that in the past year or so since it has been up and running, it has already saved hundreds of lives and is preventing an immeasurable amount of disease from happening in the future.
Hmmm, could this doctor be wrong after all?
The Private Affairs Series: Get answers to those women’s health questions you’ve been too shy to ask your doctor.
Everyday for a week, get answers to these women’s health questions and much more;
1.Why am I always wet “down there”?
2.How to tell if that discharge is a sexually transmitted infection
3.What the color of your poop says about you
4.How to never need adult diapers
5.How shaving could make you sick