So long, Doctor Doom!
As I mentioned in a previous post, I did NOT have a good first experience with our initial cardiologist. So I was absolutely thrilled when she was unavailable and we had to see a different doctor for our second cardiology visit. The first thing he did was sit down and go over everything about Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome from the beginning…in simple terms. He said that Nolan’s heart was structured differently (what’s called a Double-Outlet Right Ventricle), which would be helpful for him. I was shocked, we never heard that in our first meeting with Dr. Doom (imagine that). He also said these words: “We have some of the best surgeons you’ll find for this…we know how to treat it, and we’re successful at it.” WHOA. What a turnaround! We went from Welcome to Depressionville, Population YOU….to HOPE! It was like suddenly we had a breath of fresh air, and I immediately felt more uplifted.
He had us do another fetal echo, and he came in the room multiple times to guide the tech towards things he wanted to see specifically. Afterward he met with us again to confirm everything and talk a little bit about future appointments. Then he personally walked us to check-out so we could make an appointment to meet with the surgeon who would be doing Nolan’s surgeries. Wow…that’s service. You know, I can’t say enough how much it meant to have a fresh view on things at this stage in our journey. The first doctor made it seem hopeless, the next doctor made us feel like they knew exactly what to do. And when your world has become so fragile, that’s big.
So I encourage you, find the doctor you like. Find someone who speaks at your level, not down to you. Chances are, wherever you are, there will be a few cardiologists available: try them all if you want. Seriously. You will be seeing this person A LOT. If they give you crap, you’re going to have to deal with their crap for a LONG time. So make it worthwhile for everyone. I encourage you to seek out other heart parents in your area and flat-out ask them who they like and why…I promise you they’ll be happy to tell you. It’s YOUR responsibility to ensure the best care for your kids…so do the legwork now.