A Letter to My Patients – A Doctor’s Migraine Experience

A letter to my patients

 

To all of my patients and those soon to be,

In my 7 years of practice, I’ve had the honor of taking care of many of you when you have suffered from a variety of terrible health conditions. Thank you for putting your trust in myself and my staff.

Don’t worry, this isn’t a farewell letter. I’m not going anywhere anytime soon.

This is a letter to let you know that for all the trust you have placed in me to take care of you, I don’t think I was serving you to the very best of my abilities.

Don’t worry, it’s not because of a lack of training or ability to give a great atlas correction. I will always stand by my work there.

It’s because until recently, I don’t think I was able to truly understand what many of you have felt on a daily basis. It wasn’t until I got a taste of the throbbing pain and the nauseating sickness of a migraine that I could feel a deeper sense of connection to what some of you have felt for years.

Throughout my life I’ve always been fairly healthy. I’ve had some of the headaches, stomach aches, and shoulder injuries but these problems came and went without much assistance from other doctors. Even my introduction into chiropractic was less about treating any pain or symptoms, it was really about correcting the structure of my spine so I could experience what it was like to have optimal structure and better health.

Last month I got sick for the first time in several years. I can’t even tell you the last time I had a cold. I got hit with a terrible fever for 24 hours after a light workout. I came home to a feeling of chills followed by a long night of sweats and a 103.5 degree fever.

After a restless night of sleep, I noticed that I still didn’t feel quite right. I went into the office the next day in a daze that I couldn’t shake. That afternoon, the headache hit. My head started pounding and just the normal light and sounds of the office seemed to overwhelm my senses. I was nauseated and the only thing that seemed to be less terrible was just to put my head down and close my eyes.

I made it back home and just lied down in the dark. I didn’t want anything to drink, and I didn’t want any dinner (which if you know me, then you know this has to mean that I was in bad shape). It was too late to see my chiropractor, and anti-inflammatories didn’t really budge the pain.

All I could do was close my eyes, endure, and wake up tomorrow with the hope for a better day.

The next day I got to wake up feeling a little hung over, but after getting an adjustment from my chiropractor I bounced back to my normal self pretty quickly.

A lot of people don’t get to have that luxury, and I feel for them.

I’ve always known intellectually that living with chronic pain and illness must be a terribly difficult existence. However, it’s difficult to feel that struggle until you’ve experienced a taste of it for yourself.

I will always strive to improve my skills as a clinician to deliver the best care I possibly can to my patients. And even though I’ve often praised for my bedside manner, I think this short but temporary bout with the debilitating feeling of a migraine will make me a better and more compassionate doctor for you all.

Sincerely,

 

Jonathan Chung, DC

 

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