This is one of the reasons I was avoiding surgery , and have been quite enthusiastic about using alternative forms of medication, While I use antibiotics in order to localize the infection, and all the standard home remedies such as hot water for fomentation, I am quite willing to try various alternative medicines such as homeopathy , in order to localize the process , so that I can save myself from the surgeon’s knife .
Having gone through this myself , I can understand sometimes why patients are so reluctant to follow the doctor’s advise , even when this is extremely sound, and given in good faith. When they try alternative medicine and this fails, they are forced to go back to the doctor ( like I had to). The doctor is quite happy to remark– “ I told you so ! “
However, what about the patients who ignore the doctor advise and get better on their own ? They don't go back to the doctor and tell him that they no longer need his assistance ! This means the doctor never gets to follow-up on the patients who didn't follow his advice and got better , inspite of ( or perhaps because of) disregarding his medical advice !
A final personal observation. As a doctor , you tend ignore or neglect some of your own complaints. You tend to self medicate , and treat yourself , because you think you're extremely important in your patient's life and you don’t want to deprive your patients of your expertise . This means that when you are all, you tend to put yourself second , and focus a lot of your attention and energies on taking care of your patients, rather than taking care of yourself. This is not something which is very smart or something which I'm proud of !