Category Archives: For Physicians

Dear Doctor,

As I sit here to write you this note there are so many things to be said… We were supposed to be on the same team, fighting for my healthcare yet the “Healthcare System” has stolen you from my team.

I know you spent many years dreaming of becoming a doctor and helping thousands of patients. I am sure you would be up late in medical school studying hard and struggling through the long nights thinking that in the end these long nights would pay off when you entered into your residency program. I am sure you read many research articles and longed to help patients just like the ones in the articles you read. As you applied for residency programs across the country, I know you must have been nervous and excited to see where your next educational journey would lead you. I know the residency interviews were probably overwhelming and you probably second guessed every answer you gave during those interviews on your way home, only hoping that the residency programs saw your passion to help patients. The months were probably grueling as you were waiting for The Match results to see where you would train next. I am sure that you were on my team during this time as well, just not officially as we had not yet met. Our paths would soon cross, you would officially join my team as my doctor and healthcare advocate.

I know the first few years after you joined my team you were full of life, enthusiasm and thought our team would win. We thought we could conquer the world together and the sky was the limit for us. However, “someone” kept stealing parts of you a little at a time.

Each time I saw you your light began to seem as if it wasn’t as bright. Your eyes showed you were growing weary and your heart began to put up a wall. I don’t blame you because your heart began to have a wall built around it… I know you didn’t want to build that wall, the wall was built by the people stealing you from my team. Your time with me began to be cut shorter and shorter each time we saw each other. I could see in your eyes and hear it in your voice that you longed for more time with me but “someone” was telling you that you were not allowed to see me for long periods of time any longer. Each time we saw each other our team meetings became more of “a quick throw me a bottle of water” like a runner in a race receives as they are trying to finish a race. Eventually our team meetings were cut to 15 or 20 minutes max. You quickly entered our meeting room and tried to make eye contact while staring at your computer to take notes. Our team was falling apart, you knew it and I knew it.

As our team began to fall apart, our time was cut even further and we were pushed to emails in a portal. You were stolen from my team and I got mad at you. Please don’t blame me, as I won’t blame you. We were meant to win but the cards became stacked against us. The “someone” that stole you was our “Institution of Healthcare”. They made you join teams (seeing more patients) even though it was impossible to be your best with everyone. Your home life, body and mental health has suffered.

Your dreams of being on my team are completely gone and you are in survival mode just like I am. The healthcare system has failed you and I, which has caused us to be mad at one another. They took our DREAM TEAM and crumbled it. They have stolen our time together and our time apart. They make you spend hours on the phone fighting insurance companies for approval of tests and medications. They make me spend hours on the phone fighting for these things as well. They make you fight and defend yourself against pharmaceutical companies when things go wrong with their medications. They make me fight the same thing too… They have divided our team and cut our time with one another so we cannot compare notes. I am here to tell you I want OUR team back! I want us to go back to where were when we first met. I want us to remember the sky is the limit and to win together. Please come back to our team and TAKE BACK OUR HEALTHCARE. We can fight together and take on these giants TOGETHER by saying enough is enough.

Sincerely,

Your Patient and Teammate

My Epilepsy Story PRESENTS Dr. Anup Patel: “Importance of Proper Transition From Pediatric to Adult Neurology” Two years ago, My Epilepsy Story interviewed Dr. Anup Patel, Section Chief of Pediatric Neurology at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, where he explained the importance of having a transition plan for teens with epilepsy. Now, this upcoming May 20th, Dr. Anup Patel […]

Collaboration is Key Today is our 3rd Annual International Women With Epilepsy Day!  WOW, this has been an AMAZING journey to get us here!  As I sit here thinking about what brought us to this day, I think of all the people that have worked together to change the lives of millions of women and […]

MONEAD Study Group Maternal Outcomes and Neurodevelopmental Effects of Antiepileptic Drugs The Ohio State University Medical Center’s Epilepsy Team held a journal club on the recently published article: Pennell PB, French JA, May RC, Gerard E, Kalayjian L, Penovich P, Gedzelman E, Cavitt J, Hwang S, Pack AM, Sam M, Miller JW, Wilson SH, Brown C, Birnbaum […]

The Kimford J. Meador Research in Women with Epilepsy Award is awarded to provide support for ealy career clinician scientists who have made significant contributions to understanding and better care for women with epilepsy.  This year’s recipient is Dr. Sally Mathias.  Her research was on Efficacy, Safety and Need Change of Zonisamide During Pregnancy in Women […]

I wanted to unveil this exciting news during our annual American Epilepsy Society (AES) meeting! I am writing to share with you about our newest award from the My Epilepsy Story (MES) organization, the Dr. Sandra Helmers Memorial Scholarship for young women living with epilepsy that want to go to college or trade school.  Dr. Helmers was […]

Primary Care Physicians (PCPS) and Neurologists should be working hand and hand to provide quality healthcare to patients across the country.  We should be working together within our residency programs to facilitate this cultural change while our doctors are still in training.  When we educate the primary care physician on the American Academy of Neurology […]

Seizure Tracker IT’S NOT JUST SEIZURESTM (INJS) Initiative Epilepsy is so much more than just a medical diagnosis. Quality of life can often be overlooked and the impact of living with seizures on self and family is limitedly understood. To better improve on this aspect of epilepsy care, My Epilepsy Story is partnering with Seizure Tracker to promote a […]

My Epilepsy Story (MES) was founded based off inequities of research into epilepsy and women’s health, and the consequences of being in an under researched patient population. We see a continued need to address the healthcare disparities within the women with epilepsy community. Disparities in the quality of healthcare are known to persist in rural […]

Today on our EMPOWERING Women and Girls Living with Epilepsy video series we hear from Dr. Kimford J. Meador, Dr. Meador is a Neurologist and Professor of Neurology in Palo Alto, CA at Stanford University School of Medicine in the Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences and currently sees patients at Stanford Neuroscience Health Center. […]