Let's say that you do go to the doctor with symptoms, they'll run tests on you, and if nothing comes up - you're fine. But wait... you're having symptoms, doesn't that obviously mean that something is wrong? Even a 5 year old could tell you that. In my experience, in the absence of nothing showing up on the general diagnostic testing, of course it was assumed that I had a mental illness. But wait.. I don't. And if I did, it would because I'm depressed from the lack of care that I am receiving, not depressed on my own. My blood pressure is abnormal, there are abnormalities in my blood work, I'm in pain, I'm tachycardic and have a whole slew of other symptoms, but my doctors couldn't chalk it up to a diagnosis - so again, apparently I just have a mental illness and should see a psychiatrist... for my blood pressure issues and elevated white blood cell count.
I'm not just referring to this from my experience with one doctor, I had to see many doctors before one even bothered to run proper testing. Ask almost anyone chronically ill, especially if they're female and young. There have even been studies showing that if women go to the ER for chest pains, it's assumed it's anxiety, but if it's a man, it MUST be something serious. Anyway, guess what? I have nerve damage, something IS going on. Guess how many neurologists I had to see before they actually did testing, instead of handing me anti-depressants with dangerous side effects? 4. If something is not obviously wrong with you, doctors assume nothing is wrong with you and it's all in your head. Is this really health care?
If I gave up and saw a psychiatrist instead of switching family doctors and pushing for more referrals to different doctors, I would probably be in significantly worse state. However, let's say that it was mental illness, would covering up the illness with a band aid of anti-depressants resolve the reason why I have this condition? I am NOT saying that people shouldn't use them, they can be very helpful and improve one's quality of life significant;y, what I am saying is that none of this fixes you or resolves why you are sick... it just covers things up. This is the way that things are, and I can accept that, but this doesn't seem like "health care" to me, but rather "disease management". If you didn't know, anti-depressants have a side effect of suicidal thoughts. Isn't it ironic? I got those side effects, and I can tell you it was very confusing for me. I am a reasonably cheerful person and never think that suicide is the answer... so why did my brain chemically want me to kill myself upon taking those medications? Look up anti-depressants, there's a bold warning saying that it could lead to suicide, if you don't believe me. I stopped the medication within one dose, but my doctors kept telling me to push through and stay on it, that this will pass... but it wouldn't do me any good if I did lose my reasonable judgement and try to kill myself, just saying. This medication, like most medications end up helping one part of your body while destroying other parts of your body. If you don't get side effects from medications, consider yourself rare and lucky.
Let's think about anti inflammatory medications. They work to suppress the reason the inflammation that is occurring, usually an active immune system triggered by infections, injuries or are of an autoimmune nature. Yes, they will stop the inflammation, but over long term use can lower the blood flow to that target area.. which can cause even more issues itself. They do not stop the reason why the inflammation occurs, it's just a nice band aid, that can have many, many side effects that can occur all over your body while you cover up one target problem.
Western Medicine makes absolutely no sense to me. Why do we have one doctor for each part of our body, when our body functions as a whole? I understand that one doctor cannot master everything, but the issue is that most doctors are absolutely clueless about the rest of the body, outside of their specialty. Even with the admission of their lack of knowledge, doctors, at least my doctors, fail to communicate. Sure, they send each other my results, but none of them have ever sat down to discuss what they think is going on.
I have ONE issue, my immune system is attacking me. However, this is hitting multiple organs and multiple systems. Each doctor treats each of my body parts as if there is no underlying issue, as if the other symptoms I have do not exist. What kind of sense does that make? If they do realise that things are going wrong elsewhere, they end up treating one part of my body successfully, but the medication ends up worsening another part of my body and they don't know how to fix that. What happened to do no harm? Perhaps I wouldn't be cured if my doctors did in fact work together, but maybe I'd have an improved quality of life - is there really any harm in attempting this approach?
All I've gotten from my doctors for a year and a half was disease management, each in their own field. Each medication had side effects, so I would take more medication to help those side effects, and more to help the side effects of the drugs that I took to help the original side effects. You may think that I'm exaggerating about taking more drugs for the side effects, but I used to take 25+ pills per day. It took a fight against the health care system, the one that's supposed to be there to help the patient, for me to finally receive some sort of treatment for the root of my conditions. Even still... they did help calm my immune system down, at the expense of bloody stools, weight loss and the inability to eat.
No, those treatments didn't work but if they did, I would have to depend on them for the rest of my life because those too are considered "disease management" rather than about getting me healthy again, which is what "health care" should be about.
It does not appear that I can win, it does not appear that I can become healthy again, at least not through the "health care" system.
Welcome to the "disease management" system.