Wednesday, April 8, 2015 – Part Two
I left yesterday morning at 8 am for my 10 am appointment appointment in Metairie with Dr. Shamsnia. The waiting room was packed (all 25 chairs) when I arrived. It always is.
Like I said in my earlier post everyone is always upset about how long they have to wait to see Dr. Shamsnia, and I’m always his champion. After the four hour wait I was called and the nurse took all my information, blood pressure, weight, the usual. She said Dr. Shamsnia should be in soon. While I was waiting, I heard him twice say he was going somewhere and would be back in a while.
About 1 hour after I was waiting in the room, (now 5 hours into the visit) a nice resident came in and talked to me for quite a while about everything I needed to talk to the doctor about. He felt a new Sleep Apnea study was due, because even after sleeping at least 12 hours every night I am still tired. Maybe my machine needs to be re-calibrated. We talked about the form I need Dr. Shamsnia to sign, the sleep apnea, the MRI comparisons and how I’ve called his office every couple of weeks to see if Dr. Shamsnia had compared them yet. I also said I need to know what type of dementia I have and wanted to know if there was a newer, better medicine than either Plavix or Aricept. He said he’d present all this to Dr. Shamsnia before he came in. Before he left I asked him (as I had asked the nurse originally) to make sure he has, in his hands, my MRIs to compare.
After another hour Dr. Shamsnia came in with the nice male resident and another female resident in tow. I’m use to that because he’s a teaching doctor and I appreciate that. Doesn’t bother me a bit. He sits down and says “You have a form for me to sign?” I said yes it’s from Social Security, and I explained I sent it in the mail but you said I needed to come in. He made several comments about it, saying “It looks like a legal form from an attorney. ” I assured him it came directly from Social Security to me. He goes over the form, circles yes and no, where appropriate and signs it. He stands up and heads to the door. After waiting 6 hours to see him, and having more things I needed to talk about, I grabbed his arm as he tried to leave. He looked at me and I said “Why are you leaving?” He said “Oh I just need to copy this form.” Thinking he was coming back I let go and then saw him give the form to one of the residents who went to the copy machine, while Dr. Shamsnia walked into the next patients room. I could not believe he did that and since the door was now open I could see the back office activity. When he visited with the next patient about ten minutes and came out I saw the nice resident try to have a word with him about me and Dr. Shamsnia blew him off. He then walked into the next room (there are only 3 patient rooms) with the residents and closed the door.
During the time he was with the other two patients I began to realize I couldn’t take him as my doctor any longer. I know my blood pressure, which was 118 over 78 when I came in, and at that point it had to be sky high. I didn’t say this before but when I first saw Dr Shamsnia years ago he stressed that I needed to eliminate all stress from my life or I would absolutely have a stroke. That’s when I put on Facebook that I was at the clinic and if anyone heard I was in jail, it would be for murdering the doctor. Had to let out some stress somehow!
The nice nurse came in the office (thinking Dr. Shamsnia was finished with me, since he’d given her my chart for me to check out) and said for me to go to the front window to get my next appointment. I burst into tears and asked her (very calmly, I don’t know how I did it) to have all my records, MRIs, other tests, etc. gathered for me because if he did not come to see me next, I was leaving and going to another doctor. She apologized to me, as has everyone in that clinic at sometime because of how he’s started to treat patients and his erratic behavior (they didn’t say erratic I did – he’s their boss they wouldn’t want to get fired).
I sat back down in the room and cried uncontrollably. The storm gates had opened and out came the tears. I heard the last door open and close and heard someone say something to him and he came back in. He said, “You want something else?” I said (trying to calm down because I need the information) “I need to know if you have compared my MRIs yet?” He proceeds to tell me that my file didn’t show he has compared them, so he must not have. I asked him to do it now while I wait. He proceeds to fuss (nice word being used) at me saying that he does not take the time to do this for anyone. I said, “But you’re my doctor so who else will do it?” He said it could take hours, and he hires attorney’s to do the comparisons and he guess he just hasn’t gotten to it yet. He goes on about how much money he has to pay attorneys to take care of things. Then he goes on about the form he had to sign, how it’s worded trying to trick doctors. He said he does not sign these unless he can look the patient in the eye and know who they are. When I sent this to him I had just been in the office less than a month before. Okay, I understand that. He has to protect himself. He kept talking about what a wonderful, highly praised doctor he was. That he was well know for giving testimony in court and other things because if the words came out of his mouth they were golden (not exactly those words but the gist) That all of his patients knew that they had to wait a long time to see him but he was worth it. I told him as I was still sobbing that yes, he use to be that doctor, but he wasn’t any longer. My last visit was only 5 minutes and this one was only 2 minutes. I also told him that I needed him to be a better doctor for me and I needed him to explain more to me. He didn’t offer anything, just more self indulgent rantings about his superiority. He said “I don’t do for many patients what I did for you sending the Social Security his physicians report.” I again told him how deeply I appreciated it, but that he never told me the things in the office that he put in the report, and that I need to know more. There was MUCH more said on his part but I don’t remember it all. Except that his tone of voice and attitude had become very ugly.
I had gotten very quiet while he ranted and knew what my next statement would be. I told Dr. Shamsnia that I was going to have my primary physician order my sleep apnea test. I didn’t say this to him but, the only reason I originally planned to have Dr. Shamsnia’s office do the test is 1) because they do those tests and 2) because when I first brought my original sleep apnea test to Dr. Shamsnia he called other doctors quacks and said that he should do it himself. I also very calmly told him that I wanted my files and everything so I could take them to another doctor who I knew would review my MRIs and take better care of me. He starts telling me that most doctors cannot even read MRIs and they don’t have the expertise he has and the years of study and practice that he has. Then he said he had a comparison report in the file. When he pulled it out it was the comparison between my 2011 and 2014 MRIs. Not the old ones when my brain was bigger compared to the newer two, when it is smaller. I pointed that out to him. He proceed to go on about other doctors inadequacies and that I’d never find another neurologist like him. Thank the Lord!!!!
The nice young male resident was in the room and kept putting his hand on my shoulder to comfort me while the doctor proceeded to brow beat me. I was so hurt and upset by this time that I told him I write a blog, and that today’s blog would be about the visit with him today. I told him that I’ve always told people he was a wonderful doctor but in the last year or so he’s completely changed.
Okay, hold on, this next is unbelievable. He proceeds to tell me about YELP and how people rate their doctors on that and other sites. He said, “If you have a bad rating on YELP or others, those companies will come to you asking for money to raise your rating.” He said NO to paying them. Then he proceeds to tell me that in his new building next door he’s setting up a room with a computer with internet. On this computer, patients who like him will be allowed to go in there and enter their positive rating, thus bringing up his overall rating. The audacity of that man. Did he think I would not tell any one about this? The young resident looked floored and knowing that it was the resident’s first day at the clinic I felt so sorry for him, as well as me. I had told the resident earlier what a wonderful doctor Dr Shamsnia had been but that lately things had changed. He was getting to see first hand how crazy this little Iranian man really was.
At the end he finally said he will compare the MRIs, but not today because he has patients lined up until midnight. Maybe tomorrow or later in the week. At that time, no one had found my MRIs and brought them to me and it still hadn’t happened when I left. These are big approx. 20″x 26″ film that do not hide just anywhere.
Let me stop here and go back to when we were in the waiting room. During the usual long wait conversations, we discovered there were four of us in the room with 10 am appointments and several for all appointment times before and after. When I left, the waiting room was full again with those people who might be waiting till midnight. No doctor should over book four patients at a time. Absolutely unacceptable.
When he rose to leave I told him that I would allow him to review the MRIs (I really need someone to) and will consider my next step. The resident again touched my shoulder and said I’m so sorry. Dr. Shamsnia said I could have my money back for today’s appointment.
The young nurse again came in and started to say something, and changed it to “Is he coming back?” I said I really don’t know, but I have to go. I sat in the room for a moment trying to calm down and then I went down the hall, through the waiting room and when I got into the elevator the tear gates opened worse than ever. I started sobbing so hard I was hyperventilating. I used my asthma inhaler to get me breathing. I’m sure the people in the waiting room, and the people in the parking garage, probably thought I had just received some terminal diagnosis. I really thought I’d die right there by all the cars.
I calmed down enough to make it across the street to my car. Roy wasn’t answering his phone (he had a great reason so I don’t blame him) but Chip answered his. I can’t imagine what Chip thought, but at some point while I was still in the doctor’s office I texted him to pray for me at the doctors. He did pray, so he knew something was wrong. During him calming me down, he said something about the doctor should give me my money back. I remembered I left without doing that. So I went back in, still red faced and teary eyed and walked calmly up to the window. The nice receptionist opened her eyes wide when she saw me and I said “He said I could have my money back from today’s visit, and I’d like to have it.” She said “yes mam” and gave me my money back. When she did that she took my hand and again said she was sorry. They all had said they were sorry at some point during the visit, except Dr. Shasmnia. She then said “He’s looking everywhere for those MRIs.” I very nicely, because this was not at all her fault, said “He should have done that two months ago.” And I left.
It’s almost 24 hours since I left, and I am still totally drained from that experience. I will never go to that doctor again and I firmly believe what he did to me was mental abuse. I hope no one I care about, will ever be a patient of Dr. Morteza Shamsnia on Kingman Street in Metairie at Advanced Neurodiagnostic Center and Sleep Center. If you do choose to do so, you’re at least warned.
When (and if) he does find my MRIs and does compare them I will be thankful for that. I have already contacted my primary care physician to have the new sleep apnea test scheduled asap. They are also working up a list of recommended neurologists in this area for me to see. I will interview each one before I choose, because I NEED someone who doesn’t make me wait more than one hour (I think that is extremely fair) and someone who will take the time to know my case and help me through this horrible process of having a shrinking brain like I need them to.
I also should have had a followup neuropsychologist re-testing before now, and I will know more about the current condition of my brain by doing that. I called Dr. Susan Andrews who did the first one, and I found out she no longer takes Blue Cross. What a let down, but her partner takes Blue Cross PPO and we have Blue Cross HMO so they are trying to find out if they can cover me with her partner. I also asked my primary care physician looking for someone else to do the retesting in case that doesn’t work out.
I mailed off the form Dr. Shamsnia signed, this final piece in the current phase of Social Security processing. It is now in the Philadelphia Social Security’s hands where they do the medical review. Hopefully I’ll get a determination from them soon.
If anyone local knows a neurologist and/or a neuropsychologist on the Northshore in Louisiana, and that doctor is great, please let me know. We hope to be leaving here soon for a year, and I now need to get the sleep apnea test done, the neuropsychologist testing redone and a new neurologist on board.
My God is GREATER than anything Dr. Shasmnia could throw at me. Knowing I had His loving arms around me kept me from totally going over the edge. I failed to mention earlier above that during the last two hours, when things were the worst, I read the Bible’s book of Acts on my Kindle. It helped me focus on my God and take comfort from His words. If you don’t know that kind of Love and comfort that only God can give, please ask me to tell you more, I always want to share!
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