In A Rule of Threes I talked about getting a third opinion on dentistry. Of course, I don’t really do that, and I don’t think I’ve ever even gone for a second opinion on general medical matters.  If my doctor prescribes me a medicine I generally trust that taking the medicine in a good idea.  I pains my inner skeptic, but somewhere deep inside me there’s also a practical person who knows I simply can’t question everything.

When the HVAC guy says we need more freon, who am I to argue? I have no clue how that system works.  If the mechanic tells me the flux capacitor is on the fritz I keep it under 88.  And if my doctor gives me two different medicines I pretty much trust that they won’t combine in some way that causes me to have a seizure and drop dead (although I do ask, just to make sure they’ve taken that into consideration.)

I suppose I could learn how the HVAC system works just so I can challenge the technician’s opinion.  But I have to draw the line somewhere.  I’m not going to medical school real quick just to make sure my doctor is making sound decisions.  At a certain point I have to just say I trust that I made the right decision by selecting this doctor.

If a phone company technician comes to our house I’ll look over his shoulder the whole time.  I’ll scrutinize everything he does and make comments.  I make suggestions.  I’m that guy.  But it’s my area.  I know what he’s doing.  I understand phones.

The web is changing this bit-by-bit, allowing us to tap in to knowledge once well out of reach.  Now whenever I get home from the pharmacist I go to the Pill Identifier and make sure I really came home with what the doctor prescribed.  It’s not fool proof – I’m still trusting a long chain of people, but at least I’ve shortened it by one link.

Published by Brian

Grappling sometimes, but mostly just trying to get others to grapple.

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