Don’t let your doctor become a robot!
We all have access to seemingly unlimited amounts of information thru our smartphones and computers. Who can resist researching their illness online and discovering so many treatment and monitoring options. It must seem so frustrating to learn so much about your illness and then go to the doctor and the doctor only offers you very limited investigations and treatment plan. It may even be maddening when the doctor draws a blank stare or gets mad at you when you try to ask the doctor about some of the treatment options you studied online. If you read this article to the end, you will understand this paradox and learn a reasonable path forward.
The sad truth is that doctors are human and they can only talk about the information they have been taught. Most doctors choose to only learn a narrow area of medicine. They only learn from free pharmaceutical sponsored seminars rather than self-directing their ongoing education as a life long process. Increasingly, the protocols and treatment options doctors learn about are filtered and limited by artificial intelligence data bases under the fog of ‘evidence base’ medicine. Consensus opinions from an elite group of doctors or from an artificial intelligence are only going to give you the basic starting point average level of care. Our soul knows we are more than statistics and we deserve the opportunity to pursue advanced levels of integrative medical care.
For some reason it has been obvious to me that medicine is a humble lifetime pursuit of excellence rather than a confident declaration of expertise on the average. I think many of my medical school classmates will remember me for being the man who said, “My medical graduation diploma is only a piece of paper that says that I have learned the bare minimum…Enough to actually start teaching myself medicine.” Many people are shocked to learn that still to this day with 3 fellowships and dozens of certifications that I still say the same thing…I am just beginning to learn what I want to learn in medicine.
If most doctors essentially stop learning when they graduate and only learn updates from companies who want to increase sales of their products, they will only be good at a few things. Integrative medicine is definitely not a specialty for everyone because it requires ongoing self-directed education. Yet, even doctors who want to only learn a specialized area of medicine should recognize that there are times when we need doctors who can try to explore the whole forest rather than tie themselves to one tree. Even in a medical sub-specialty, there are integrative approaches within that specialty. There is a time and a place for everything.
The other aspect of the information age that can be frustrating for doctors and clients is the whole concept of artificial intelligence. Search engines are a basic form of artificial intelligence. Your data server actually tracks what questions you ask and tries to anticipate other information you might be interested in and other products you might buy. In a way, our data servers are making decisions for us. It is no different when we are dealing with a major illness. For better or worse, the information that is served to us in standard medicine is increasingly decided by an artificial intelligence.
Computers are useful tools only. Beware of those that ask you to give up your intellectual freedom to a cyber intelligence. I am seeing a trend to have medical decisions made by computers start to dominate many areas of standard care medicine. It is part of the reason I don’t call myself an average standard care doctor. It just doesn’t feel right to me to cook book treat my clients with managed care. I agree that these cyber treatment protocols could be the basic starting point to work up from, but they should never be the end point for my clients.
Humans are social beings that need the interaction and conversation of other humans. A computer can never serve this purpose. Emotions are our energy in motion. We sense our way thru the world, and we will never truly trust an artificial intelligence data server to make important decisions for us. This is when the caring physician is required to be the person who listens to your concerns and looks at the information you have gathered, and then offers guidance based on your emotions and personality. Medical care is not just statistics and rigid protocols. As integrative medicine specialists, we not only integrate the best options from different medical traditions, we also integrate the overwhelming flood of information from the cyber world into the unique person we sit with, share air with, and explore emotions with.hyperthermic condition of 105 degrees F (42 degrees C) was toxic not only to regular breast cancer cells, but breast cancer stem cells as well.
Please don’t be disappointed with your doctor if that doctor ignores your questions about other treatment options. Don’t get upset if that doctor gets defensive or angry because you ask a question they can’t answer. Don’t feel discouraged if that doctor tries to get in your way of finding answers by belittling you or your questions. Please thank them for the thought they have given to your situation and ask them to please continue learning so they can someday talk with you about the important issues you are asking about. Don’t let your doctor become a robot!
As artificial intelligence gets smarter and we can access any information we need, we will need less technical knowledge to put together treatment plans. The doctor of the future will need to activate the compassionate emotional systems in our limbic brain, in our bioelectrosphere, and in our DNA to make the connections which are uniquely human.If you liked this article and would like to learn more about integrative medicine, please share and subscribe.