Winnowings (Patient Voice)

  • Winnowings – A patient goes to her doctor to make a connection between a diuretic and foot pain (likely causing a flare of gout)


Ted, this is a great story. We should make it a habit to ask folks : "What made you better?" I had a lady with cough for nearly 9 months, we had done big work up, treated her for persumed asthma and gerd. When last I saw her, I noted she wasn't coughing. I wonder which of these remedies helped, so I asked her. Believe me, I was shocked when she said, 'antihistamine eye drops.' A friend had told her about the over-the-counter drops and cough relief, she tried it, and has been using them since. She also noted that all the prescription medications can cause cough.

I learn alot from this question, especially during group appointments, when patients openly share from their experiences. How rich our resources when we tap into people's collective wisdom. Then, we're more in the position of sharing, rather than imposing, our expertise.


I can imagine all the time and money involved in getting to that point, ironically spent because enough time and priority isn't given to the initial conversation.

Even if we are not going to promote the importance of that first conversation soon, we can still promote the conversation before and after through meaningful connections to other patients and the care system. Finally!


Ted Eytan, MD