a speech bubble shaped like a patient and a speech bubble shaped like a doctor

What Are Interesting Things Said At Your Doctor’s Appointments? 

I’m sure there are people who have had more doctor’s appointments than I have. I don’t doubt that. But I think I rank up there in the top ten percent for most doctor visits. I would bet the number is up in the thousands. So, fair to say, some interesting things have been said by either me or one of my docs. Here are some of the most interesting comments I remember from some of my asthma appointments:

Things I have said during my appointments:

  1. This one was in the emergency room:

    I felt very short of breath, but as soon as I walked through the ER doors I felt fine.”

  2. These are from a recent appointment with an ENT:

    “I feel fine. I actually feel really good. But, I would imagine if someone without asthma and allergies came into my body, they’d feel pretty miserable.

    “I grew up with this disease, so I have no idea what it is like not having it (allergic asthma). If I were to enter someone else’s body, I’d probably not want to re-enter my own. So it’s probably best just to leave things as they are.”

  3. This was when I learned that asthmatics, for most of history, did not have access to rescue medicine:

    “I am very fortunate to have been born when I was.”

  4. These are my attempts to explain my asthma to new doctors:

    “I suffered from asthma for ten years before my doctor even introduced me to the rescue inhaler. That blue inhaler and I soon became best friends.”

  5. I wrote an article about this one: “How Many Puffs Of Ventolin Have You Inhaled?” In all fairness, I do know of a few asthmatics who may have the record over me. Trust me, it's a record no one wants to have. If you think you have me beat, please let me know in the comments below and we can talk.

    “No one has inhaled more Ventolin in their lifetime than me.”

  6. Here are concerns I advocated about early on in my asthma career. This first one came from before I was introduced to combination inhalers like Advair and Symbicort.

    “I went through a rescue inhaler in one day, and this happened more than once.”

  7. And another similar one before the advent of Advair and Symbicort:

    “Are you worried about me going through a rescue inhaler every week?”

  8. And, then there's this Yogi-Berrish type comment I once made:

    “Despite how I feel, I feel good.”

  9. This one is a recent comment I made when discussing good asthma control:

    “I define good asthma control differently than the people who wrote those asthma guidelines. I define it as, “Am I able to do most of the things I enjoy doing. And the answer to that question is an indisputable ‘Yes’.”

  10. “Look, I probably saw more doctors by the time I was 16 than most people see an entire lifetime.”

Some comments from my doctors:

  1. This was the response I got when I asked my doctor if he was worried about me using my rescue inhaler so much (at that time it was Alupent). This was back in the late 1980s:

    “It’s a lot better than the alternative. Not having access to that inhaler might kill you.”

  2. This is one of my favorite quotes from my doctors. It was when I turned 18. My doctor left the room in a Columbo-like fashion. Then he came back in, put his index finger up, and said:

    “Oh, and by the way: If you ever decide to smoke, let me know. That way I can put you out of your misery for you.”

    I knew right away what he meant: smoking could kill me because I have severe asthma.

  3. Then there was this infamous quote. I heard many iterations of this one, and I ignored them every time.

    “Chances are all the steroids you have ingested will probably stunt your growth.”

    I may be a little shorter than my peers, but not enough to affect my quality of life.

  4. And lastly, there is this quote from a recent appointment. This is the type of question any good doctor will ask of their asthmatic patients. It's a good way for them to bring up the discussion.

    “You say your asthma is controlled. But, is it REALLY controlled?”

Interesting comments about your asthma?

These are some comments from my asthma past. These are comments that stick to my mind like a bear's paw to honey. What about you? Any interesting comments you remember from your doctor's appointments? Please share in the comments below!

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