Had a bad experience at gynecologist during routine pregnancy check-ups

75 posts in this topic

35 minutes ago, Tap said:

One thing is for sure, all dignity goes out the window when having a baby, but you'll get over that when the little bundle is there. 

 

One hundred times this.  Also, I don't know if this is common or not, but in both my births the doctor / practice I went to for prenatal care had nothing to do with the actual birth.  I went to the hospital and the midwives (who I had not met before) there dealt with the actual birth.  I did not find this weird or bad, but you may want to prepare for that as well. 

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No I do not think the behaviour of the nurse was acceptable, however, what provokes such an outburst? Patient not cooperating... expecting...

 

Here's a snippet of info for the unitiated... one of the most surprising things (to me at the time and which makes me smile now) said to me during my pregnancy was "Yes, my work area is right between your legs!"

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4 hours ago, quietlaugh said:

 

4 hours ago, quietlaugh said:

In the event of an emergency your blood type will be verified before you are transfused. It will be anyway verified when you reach the hospital.

 

You may want to prepare yourself for needles, and unknown hands where they should not be. Being pregnant under close medical care means that you blood will be drawn every 2 weeks to a months, v. ultrasound everytime (there is some data suggesting 3D ultrasounds should not be repeated too often), etc etc 

It gets exponentially worse as pregnancy carries on and birth is basically a medical free for all. And yes, as much as the result is amazing, the process is often humiliating, scary and dehumanizing. 

I suggest if you need more explanations and more care that you use the services of a Doula.

 

Even if you carry a card with your blood group, it will always be re-checked before any transfusion.

 Agree with others- main issue is with communication.  Best to  make check lists- check UK  NHS site- for what to expect, and take a German speaking friend along with you.  Yes, a Doula may be a great help .

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4 hours ago, Marianne013 said:

LOL. I had the opposite experience. The first time I went to an OB/GYM in the US (I'm German) and they asked me to put on a gown, I found that creepy. Because usually there isn't anyone in the room who isn't meant to see my nether regions, plus if you intend to poke around my vagina with a metal stick, I'd better hope you can see what you are doing and hiding under a gown can't be helpful in that situation. I've left Germany 17 years ago and now live in the UK (where there are also gowns), but I still can't really get used to the fact that I'm supposed to be embarrassed by something in front of the doctor/nurse. It always makes me wonder if they have anything to hide. 

 

This is so funny - I am american and always found the lame paper gown at the gyno to be far more embarrassing than the alternative.  Extra awkward when you get a "gown" and paper blanket, just to be sure you don't have to look at your own parts when they pull the gown up (or?  I have no earthly idea what the purpose is)

 

Now, I have to admit I was a bit perturbed the first time I went to my hausarzt for a standard checkup and he told me to take off my clothes, then just stood there waiting...not what I have ever experienced before!  I wasn't so much embarrassed as just taken by surprise and wasn't sure what to do - should I take the time to fold my clothes or just leave my pants and socks (should I leave those on?) laying on the floor so as not to waste the doctor's time?  Yes.  Deep questions indeed.  Not too long after that I was in the hospital for a week and had to do this several times a day for all kinds of people (doctors, students, nurses, ffs photographers?) so I got used to it, and actually came to enjoy it as it does seem less "shameful", and more honest, do just strip down and let them do their thing, without all the puritan rigmarole.

 

But I can totally understand it might not be an easy adjustment for everyone.  It's *very* different.

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At my OG you are also expected to take everything off and walk around from one exam station to the next.  In a couple of places you are visible from the reception area if one of helpers enters or leaves.   Great way to get to know the locals.

 

For the birth of my third chilld it was in the middle of the night, an emergency caesarian.  I had an epidural, and then they transferred me to the operating table starkers, in an unceremonious way (well I was pretty heavy, I suppose).  Funny way to meet 9 new people.  "Hi everyone?  Hope you are all awake, sorry to get you up!"   In the UK they are forever covering you up with sheets and stuff.

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6 hours ago, franklan said:

You're putting the cart before the horse.

 

You believe that the environment has to adapt to your needs. That's what "entitlement" and "need for special treatment" is all about.

Yes, the medical staff should adapt to the needs of the patient. If the Europeans are doing away with their individual nation states, languages, cultures and identities for a homogeneous United States of Europe, then yes, one would expect medical staff in Germany to speak English, as English is the premier language that medicine and medical science is published and communicated in.

If you've got freedom of movement with the Schengen zone, then expect millions of people who don't speak German to be travelling through and also living in Germany who don't speak German (the same applies to Italy, France, Greece, Spain, Denmark, etc.and their respective languages). Also, what is one supposed to do if one finds one's self, as a non-German-speaker, as a patient at a hospital in Germany? Just expect to be treated like a horse?

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@mavericck

There's a difference between emergency treatment and living in country and receiving routine medical care. Freedom of movement does not discharge you from the obligation to learn the language of the host country.

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@Marianne013 Freedom of movement doesn't come attached with an obligation to learn the language of the host country. However, I agree with the spirit of what you are saying.

 

16 hours ago, mavericck said:

If you've got freedom of movement with the Schengen zone, then expect millions of people who don't speak German to be travelling through and also living in Germany who don't speak German (the same applies to Italy, France, Greece, Spain, Denmark, etc.and their respective languages). Also, what is one supposed to do if one finds one's self, as a non-German-speaker, as a patient at a hospital in Germany? Just expect to be treated like a horse?

 

@mavericck I think most people would be of the opinion that if someone travels outside the borders of their "language area" and enters a different language area they have brought it to themselves having to deal with the foreign language rather than triggered some sort of obligation in the host population to learn English.

 

Don't get me wrong. I think everyone should learn English, but I don't think that an obligation to do should be imposed.

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50 minutes ago, Smaug said:

Freedom of movement doesn't come attached with an obligation to learn the language of the host country

 

Erm, nope...

 

AufenthG §43, Absatz 1

 

"Die Integration von rechtmäßig auf Dauer im Bundesgebiet lebenden Ausländern in das wirtschaftliche, kulturelle und gesellschaftliche Leben in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland wird gefördert und gefordert."

 

Rough translation : "The integration of foreigners legally living permanently in the Federal territory into the economic, cultural and social life in the Federal Republic of Germany is supported and demanded."

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But that document is about the settlement and integration of permanent migrants in Germany.  

 

Which is  a bit different from freedom of movement within the EU for EU citizens.  They don't have to do integration courses, etc.

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5 minutes ago, snowingagain said:

Which is  a bit different from freedom of movement within the EU for EU citizens.  They don't have to do integration courses, etc.

The OP is from Singapore. Her freedom of moving here is based on something else (which she didn't disclose yet).  

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1 hour ago, Smaug said:

Freedom of movement doesn't come attached with an obligation to learn the language of the host country.

 

29 minutes ago, franklan said:

Erm, nope...

 "The integration of foreigners legally living permanently in the Federal territory into the economic, cultural and social life in the Federal Republic of Germany is supported and demanded."

 

but you quoted Smaug who was talking about freedom of movement of EU citizens within Europe, which as he said, does not involve an obligation to learn the local language.  The thread had wandered off track a bit. 

 

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The freedom of movement says you can't be discriminated on the basis of nationality when looking for a job[*] etc. It says nothing about the host country having to provide any kind of services in any kind of language, so you cannot use this to justify "doctors must speak English".

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_movement_for_workers_in_the_European_Union

[*] And even there are exceptions.

The rights you get from the Freedom of Movement principle tend to be vastly overestimated.

 

About the original topic: The OP is deeply unhappy with her OB/GYN. If this happens, you find a new OB/GYN and take it from there, and there's really not much more you can do.

At least in Germany you get to choose and not like here in Britain, where you just get one assigned, if you get to see one at all.

 

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On 7.5.2017, 03:43:29, bramble said:

Recently I saw a report on German TV about the shortage of midwives/Hebammen in Germany, mainly due to financial reasons (cutbacks).

 

One reason is linked to significant increases in costs for liability insurance for Hebamme - at least for those who are not directly employed at a hospital.  Its a serious problem in Schleswig-Holstein where there is a severe shortage of Hebamme.  The reasons for the higher costs for insurance are basically linked to the increasing numbers of premature babies being saved (but with defects) and the parents suing anyone they can lay hands on.  Rather than federal state politicials waving their hands in the air & saying its a shame IMHO the only way out is to reduce the liability.  You cannot force people to become midwives & additionally expect them to finance themselves!

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1 hour ago, Marianne013 said:

About the original topic: The OP is deeply unhappy with her OB/GYN. If this happens, you find a new OB/GYN and take it from there, and there's really not much more you can do.

At least in Germany you get to choose and not like here in Britain, where you just get one assigned, if you get to see one at all.

Marianne013 was right to say that the post has wandered off. Neither does one have to guess why I'm here; because that has nothing to do with the help I needed. 

 

20 hours ago, mavericck said:

Yes, the medical staff should adapt to the needs of the patient. 

 

I do agree with @mavericck to some extent that medical staff should be sensitive to the patient's needs (regardless where the patient is from). Other than skills, empathy differentiates a good doctor/ nurse from the bad. Of course, empathy depends on a lot of factors, such as the characteristics and experiences of the person (which in the case of a doctor, could be how widely they practise - because doctors will understand how things work in different countries and understand the 'Why' when their patients ask certain questions). Unfortunately for some, it takes a longer time to develop, because they tend to stick to their way of doing things.

 

Over the last few days, I read reviews on Jameda.de on many different doctors and clinics, and saw negative experiences of many different natures, with some similar to what I had experienced. Most reviews were in german (but thankfully we have google translate!) so I would say people who wrote them could have been germans or foreigners who have a decent standard of german. Common negative experiences were: doctors and nurses who are rude/ scold patients, doctors who does what he/she thinks is right without discussing ailments and/or treatments, discussing patients' record where other patients were present (I think this isn't professional!), long waiting times despite having appointments, not advising patients on the outcomes of their test etc.. While my experiences were not stand-alone, I believe some of these experiences would have been improved if such doctors and nurses have more empathy as well as professionalism.

 

On 5 May 2017 at 6:39:03 AM, 2B_orNot2B said:

Over the last 33 years I have been to a lot of clinics and doctors surgeries here and often seen reception staff treating locals to a display of their abrasive manner too so I'm not so sure they'd be a whole lot different if you spoke perfect German. I think those kind of witches assume that 'because a German would know' <- (meaning if they didn't they'd have asked their mum first) they must be facing a case of sheer wilfull ignorance so they sharpen their elbows accordingly.

 

@2B_orNot2B was right to say this as well. Many hebammes I spoke to, confirms this (e.g. they said: The clinic must be thinking that you are a doctor (or you have a mother who is a doctor) and can decode your own results!) This is perhaps also why hebammes remained ever so popular even though there is a shortage. 

 

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21 hours ago, optimista said:

No I do not think the behaviour of the nurse was acceptable, however, what provokes such an outburst? Patient not cooperating... expecting...

 

I'm not sure if you have read my earlier post. What stems from this was a result of no communication between the doctor and her assistant. The doctor agreed but did not communicate it to her assistant.

 

On 3 May 2017 at 6:54:15 PM, New in DE said:

Already sick of the many sudden 'surprises' that every visit is giving, my husband and I asked a myriad of questions (including what to expect in every appointment, what are additional test(s) not covered by insurance, etc etc.) This was when we knew that test for urine, blood pressure, weight and finger prick was a norm at every appointment. Being scared of needles, I requested to omit the finger prick from the day's test and the doctor agreed. However, she did not convey to the Arzthelferin. So as soon as I exited the doctor's office, the Arzthelferin called me by saying 'Kommt!', without explaining what/ why. She proceeded saying in german, stand on machine..give me your hand..and quietly preparing the things for finger prick. As soon as I saw that, I explain to her that the doctor mentioned that I need not do the prick test for today. But she did not believe, went into a rage, threw the equipments on the table, left the room suddenly and went out to complain to her colleague (another Arzthelferin). 

 

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In my personal experience of both Singaporians and Germans I would be so bold as to make the following sweeping statement. Singaporians are diametrically oppositely opposed to Germans on the empathy and kindness scale (even moreso than your average Anglo-Saxon, who I imagine the Singaporians perhaps also find rather cold generally?). German healthcare professionals in general are startlingly lacking in empathy. Just seems to be part of the national make-up. Exceptions can always be found. Comments about horses and robots above are spot on.

 

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11 minutes ago, New in DE said:

Unfortunately for some, it takes a longer time to develop, because they tend to stick to their way of doing things.

These doctors and nurses you're talking about already brought dozens of children to the world. You just managed to get pregnant. And now you're pontificating how they should do their job...

 

That's like somebody who just achieved to get the plug into the socket, and now feels entitled to tell the electricians how they ought to do their job... 

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I predict the OP is going to find life in Germany very tough indeed.

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19 minutes ago, New in DE said:

Unfortunately for some, it takes a longer time to develop, because they tend to stick to their way of doing things.

 

If you expect 'them' doing things your way, you'll have a hard time in Germany. Whether it's doctors, midwives, electricians, car mechanics, cops or immigration officers: be prepared that they all will stick to their way of doing things. 

 

 

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