Cutting Corners

Finding a new dermatologist here (having left a perfectly good one behind when we moved) has been so aggravating it’s surprising I haven’t developed pimples.

My first round dermatologist pick in June was a dud.  Dearly Beloved suggested that for my annual checkup, I try the one he’s seen.  He thought the doctor was excellent and his nurse was very nice.  BUT, after I made the appointment, he began offering advice that made me wonder why he’d thought I should go there.

Comments like, “He doesn’t like small talk… Don’t tell him any jokes.  He won’t like your jokes.”  

When I showed up for my appointment–early, per my worrywart husband’s instructions– I was surprised to find the reception desk manned by. . . two men.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

The one that assisted me reminded me of an unpudgy William Shatner with Steve Martin’s hair.  Curiously, he was wearing flip-flops.  Ever seen a female receptionist in flip-flops?

I’d planned to don their gown and be serious as a judge, but I couldn’t, since they didn’t supply gowns.  Instead, I attempted to burrito myself inside the crackly paper ‘blanket.’

When I asked was there something that would make my eyebrows grow, but ix-nay any chin hairs, the doctor looked at his nurse and named a drug.   She said, “No, no.  I tried it and it makes hair grow anywhere.”

She turned to me and said, “I’d turn over at night and wake up, very uncomfortable.”

She looked at me meaningfully,  as if I should know what she meant.  I hadn’t a clue.  Where could she have been growing hair that would wake her at night?  Would asking be considered “small talk” or worse, a joke?  I didn’t risk it.

Once he’d completed the exam, the doctor told me that the nurse would go over my prescriptions with me, then left the room.  I asked her was there an OCT cream that would help the bags tender skin beneath my eyes.

Instead of answering right away, she opened a wall cabinet and pulled out a bulging  accordion folder.  “There’s not a cream that will help that,” she said, handing me a brochure about some treatment she said would help that problem and last for 12-18 months.  $750.   She dug back into the folder and came up with another brochure, this one for a treatment that would help the lines around my mouth.  She said.  “This will make the corners of your mouth turn up in a smile instead of down.” 

I hadn’t asked.

While the treatment might help, hearing the $750 estimate for that one only deepened my “down” corners.

A treatment to even out my skin tones was currently on special for half price, she said, then added that it would “probably take two treatments.”   Rack up another $750.

There were more brochures, more Before and After photos.  I asked had she had any of the procedures and she said, “Oh yes.”  

She looked 70-ish.  I would never have told her that, of course, and I was very relieved that she didn’t ask.

Once back home, I told DB that I didn’t have any suspicious moles, but did have eye bags, mottled skin, and a droopy mouth, in case he hadn’t noticed.  He wanted to know what I thought of the doctor, besides the implications that I was wrinkled, splotchy, and sagging.

“He was okay, I guess, but  I’m not sure that’s the place for me.”  I couldn’t help asking,   “How old do you think his nurse is?”

He surprised me by saying “She told me:  she’s 74.”  AHA!  Small talk!

But seriously?  Bless her heart, she’s barely treading water with those treatments.

I tossed the brochures.  I’d rather buy a new sewing machine.  The thought gave my drooping mouth corners an uplift;  I smiled.

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7 thoughts on “Cutting Corners

  1. Bwahahaha! Love it. Honestly, I can’t even begin to imagine where that nurse had hair growin’ that made her uncomfortable turning over in bed. Maybe she had to braid her pubic hair. Oops…did I say that out loud?

  2. Arkansas Patti

    You tickled my funny bone again. I try to not drink coffee while reading you blog. That nurse was a pip.
    Of course, you didn’t see her before those treatments. She might have looked 80-ish

  3. NCMountainwoman

    Smiling here, too! I had to change dermatogists as well. I walked into his plush office which looked rather like an upscale hotel lobby. It quickly became clear that routine body checks and actinic keratosis were not their bread and butter. Brochures abounded about laser, lifts, and botox. I had chosen him because he was a UNC grad. And he said he didn’t care about basketball!

  4. Too funny. Check out Groupon for a doctor–that is were I find all my doctors. And hey maybe you can get a deal with cream included. I don’t know where that hair grows, but I darn sure don’t want it. At least you know DB attraction to the place wasn’t the nurse or the receptionist.

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