How do I find a doctor?

Apr 3 28 Comments

Iโ€™ve had a chronic dry cough for months now. When I breathe in deeply, I get this pain in left side of my chest that goes away when I exhale. Shallow breaths are fine (no pain). Clearly nothing immediately life threatening at the moment, otherwise something wouldโ€™ve happened.

How do I go about finding a doctor? Should I get a PCP or just go to urgent care? I have my workโ€™s HSA plan. My significant other is pressuring me to go, and Iโ€™m starting to believe my body wonโ€™t or isnโ€™t capable of working through this on itโ€™s own without some sort of medical intervention.

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TOP 28 Comments
  • Facebook thezucc
    Only in America does a person need months of deliberation and a discussion on a public forum to get chronic cough looked at ๐Ÿ˜”
    Apr 3 4
    • I hate to be the WebMD guy, but a chronic cough has a wide assortment of benign or serious causes. Eh.
      Apr 3
    • Oracle / Eng prep
      Health care even with insurance sucks here

      Why is it so hard to get doctor appointment?
      Apr 3
    • Microsoft jewkdir
      We gotta lobby to increase the number of doctoral students. Doctors association had been successfully limiting the number to maintain high earnings and that is why it is hard to make an appointment. There is a figure about number of medical school graduate not increasing proportion to population growth
      Apr 3
    • Pegasystems lmWithHer
      Seriously. Shortage of doctors but excess of qualified students
      Apr 3
  • Pegasystems lmWithHer
    Take some pcp
    Apr 3 0
  • Microsoft jewkdir
    As someone who sees a doctor regularly for serious chronic conditions in me and my family (all kinds of specialists), I suggest to schedule to see a primary care doctor first. He may not know what causes yours but you will be using him as a record keeper and also a person who you can ask any questions like this. He will see if this needs an attention to see a specialist and will suggest what kind of doctor you need to see. If you go to a specialist directly, they will ask you to find a PCP anyway. Make sure to see MD and someone who got a degree from US. There is big difference in analytical thinking with these two metrics. It will take months to know what is causing yours and there is a procedure and steps they need to go through. Your health is more important than money, career or relationships. Find a PCP right now.

    One more thing: donโ€™t go to urgent care. Chronic condition is not something they deal with. Also most of people you see in urgent care are not MDs. They are either nurse practitioners, physician assistants or ODs (better). I have all kinds of experiences from all of what I mentioned.
    Apr 3 1
  • Intel vks
    Why is this such a difficult decision ? Go to your PCP if you have one. If not just go to the nearest urgent care in your network
    Apr 3 3
    • I donโ€™t have a PCP. It doesnโ€™t seem like urgent care material since itโ€™s nothing of a immediate concern. I mean, itโ€™s annoying to cough regularly, but itโ€™s not immediately life threatening. So it doesnโ€™t seem like urgent care material.
      Apr 3
    • I guess Iโ€™m also cautious because I donโ€™t want to unnecessarily rack up medical bills. I wouldnโ€™t want to get an expensive urgent care bill when I shouldโ€™ve picked some more appropriate type of care.
      Apr 3
    • There is no such thing as urgent care material. Urgent care is just another PCP place being more expensive and with less wait time than traditional PCP. Just go dude if you feel life threatening.
      Apr 3
  • Broadcom Ltd. rFkd21
    Urgent care doesnโ€™t bill at ER rates, itโ€™s very close to PCP cost, so go there.
    Apr 3 1
    • Depends. Many insurance companies cover PCP at a better rate than urgent care.
      Apr 3
  • Oath deep_in
    Get a pcp
    Apr 3 0
  • Oracle pzd
    Zocdoc not available in your area?
    Apr 3 3
  • Google / Product 4pmCoffee
    Do not take it lightly. Get a PCP and see them ASAP
    Apr 3 2
  • Issue is a PCP will not know anything about it. They never do... And you lose your time trying to schedule an appointment.

    Why not directly go to see a specialist? That's what I do now and usually they are all fully booked.
    Apr 3 1
    • Well since I have no diagnosis I have no idea what type of specialist Iโ€™d need, though Iโ€™m 99% sure the problem is my lungs.

      Honestly now Iโ€™m thinking urgent care might be better since they have more on hand than a PCP would, in terms of resources to reach a diagnosis and whatever treatment that might be necessary.
      Apr 3
  • Fannie Mae / Eng mdarkroom
    My SO is a doctor. She thinks you could either have a cough variant asthma(where sometimes when you cough or breathe deeply or exert you could have some tightness). Or it could even be GERD (acid reflux) and the chest pain on one side (if sharp pain on deep inhalation) could probably be a recent coincidence due to pulling a muscle etc. Need more info on type of pain and any other symptoms,family history,allergies, your ethnicity etc. If you donโ€™t have the time to go to a doctor, maybe you could try using an app like HealthTap for telemedicine? Cheap and fast.
    Apr 21 0
  • Microsoft / Eng BigPointer
    Doc will only poision you will pills and charge huge fees for it. All you need for this is ACV, multi vitamin, yoga, and some time in nature.
    Apr 4 0
  • Salesforce imposters
    Wow. Blind is everything from agony aunt to career counselor to love struck bird healer to health and financial consultant. :)
    Apr 3 0
  • Adobe / Eng IwrkforRSU
    Castlight
    Apr 3 0