Let us take a closer look at today’s complex and often contentious world of healthcare and medicine. If you find yourself wondering whether a second opinion is worth the trouble involved, read on to learn more.
Every patient’s Advocate
She has been named as one of CNN’s Heroes of Patient Empowerment in 2008. She is known as “Every patient’s Advocate” and writes extensively on diverse health topics such as medical records, overconfident doctors, aggressive medication, and many more! Yes, we are talking about Trisha Torrey who is a popular patient empowerment activist.
Do you know Ms. Torrey’s story and how she went on to become a renowned patient advocate who helps people understand the healthcare system and get the best out of it?
Back in 2004, she was “diagnosed” with Subcutaneous Panniculitis-like T-Cell Lymphoma. This is a very rare form of cancer with a very high mortality rate. Her biopsy samples were examined by two independent laboratories and a confirmed diagnosis of this rare form of lymphoma had been handed to her. Predictably, her oncologist recommended immediate chemotherapy! Faced with an inner conflict between her intuition and over the need to trust the medical diagnosis, Ms. Torrey sought a second opinion to quell her doubts and understand whether her diagnosis was indeed right!
She, therefore, sent her biopsy samples to a specialist at the prestigious National Institute of Health and the reports came back normal!! Ms. Trisha Torrey was not even a cancer patient to begin with. She had been misdiagnosed and the corrected diagnosis was one of ‘Panniculitis (it is an inflammation of fat cells)’ alone! The world of medicine, like any other field of work, is prone to such moments of non- astute diagnosis and misguided perceptions