Have you ever received medical advice that just didn't seem right to you? I have, and I decided to get a second opinion.
I recently had my right ankle covered with red bite-like marks that itched like crazy and caused my ankle to swell up. My ankle throbbed from the swelling, and it was so itchy that I couldn't sleep. The mere touch of the fabric on my ankle made it itch. We had recently been in an area where there was poison ivy, and after some preliminary online research, I wanted a doctor to confirm that I didn't have poison ivy.
I went to a walk-in clinic and fortunately, I didn't have to wait very long to see a doctor. He was very kind and told me he felt that the bumps were indeed bug bites and proceeded to share with me what led him to his diagnosis, which I really appreciated. He then went on to prescribe some cortisone cream and an antihistamine to reduce the itching and swelling. He was very good and explained why he was prescribing those items.
Of course, I asked him if there were any natural solutions for my ankle. I remembered that in one of the past episodes of Vitamin Junkeys that Dr. JJ recommended Quercetin as a natural antihistamine. The doctor told me that unfortunately there were not any natural solutions for my ankle. I could let everything run its course or take the items that he prescribed. I thanked him for what he offered and left.
Later, I went to a vitamin store to find some Quercetin. It was my lucky day, because there was a naturopath on-site that concurred with the M.D.'s diagnosis, and she was able to recommend the best dosage of Quercetin. She also suggested a homeopathic cream and homeopathic Apis Mellifica to help relieve the itching.
That evening, I loaded up on everything the naturopath recommended and was able to sleep that night. The next day, the swelling had decreased and the itching had subsided. By the second day of using the natural remedies, my ankle was well on the road to recovery, with no swelling and very little itching.
I find the fact that the doctor said that there were not any natural options disappointing. What would have been a better answer was that he didn't know of any - which is only a slightly different answer, but it is less dismissive. It leaves things open for the possibility that there could be a natural option. The crazy thing is that the vitamin store I went to was literally across the hall from the walk-in clinic. He could have even referred me there himself!
I realize that my itchy ankle was really an insignificant health concern compared to what some people are faced with. However, it still serves as an example of the differences of opinion for treatment options.
As more people are becoming more conscious of what they are putting into their bodies, they need to start to question what the doctors are prescribing and really take charge of their own health. Opinions vary among medical doctors, naturopaths and other healthcare practitioners, although a natural healthcare practitioner will offer a different perspective on a health issue and typically will help you get to the root of the matter. If something in the medical advice you are given doesn't seem quite right to you, ask more questions. If it still doesn't feel right, then go with your gut and get a second opinion.