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Can I ask to be sedated so that I can relax and get through the exam without pain or an anxiety attack?

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Infertility Specialist
Practicing since : 2000
Answered : 3580 Questions
MY FIRST QUESTION: i have an intense fear of doctors and of getting physical exams, to the point where i have not seen any physician for a number of years now. i am approaching 40 and i know that i am putting my health and well being at risk the longer i wait and it is for that reason that i am asking, can i go to a doctor (not having the option of getting to know them because most doctors won't talk to you for weeks and weeks before wanting to examine you), and can i ask to be sedated so that i can relax and get through the exam without pain or an anxiety attack? (I live in Ontario, Canada and i am not sure what the protocols here might be).

Thanks for posting your query.
Some people do have a fear of doctors called white coat fear. Just be relaxed.
You do need to have a thorough examination to detect any early changes in your health.
You can have a seat while being examined and can relax also to overcome the apprehension. You have to overcome your anxiety and fear as it can cause you to avoid needed medical care. It can put your health and well-being at risk, and may ultimately result in difficult, complicated medical procedures for conditions that would have initially been easy to treat.
Hope this answers your query. I will be glad to answer the follow up queries that you have.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. XXXXXXX Tayal.

MY FOLLOW UP STATEMENTS/QUESTION: Some people do have a fear of doctors called white coat fear. Just be relaxed.
You do need to have a thorough examination to detect any early changes in your health.

MY ANSWER: My fear goes beyond "white coat" fear, if i were able to relax i would have done so a long time ago. My fear stems from a history of abuse that i have never received treatment for (and even now, writing this, i am on the verge of panic). i need help OR i need to be sedated during the exam (and the problem WITH getting help, i can only get the help BY going through a physical exam....i won't get a referral otherwise)......Do you see my dilemma here? i am undiagnosed but i am pretty sure that i have both times......i don't trust people until i get to know them, i need to have a feeling of control, there is nothing at a doctors office that makes me feel like i have any control at all. i have to stop now because just sitting here typing this is difficult. i hope one of you has an answer for me.

Posted Sun, 15 Apr 2012 in Anxiety and Stress
Answered by Dr. Mahesh Koregol 8 hours later

Just relax and take XXXXXXX breath and read my points below:

1)     Be happy that you are not alone who face this problem. Lot of patients who walk into my clinic have this problem. You have absolute right to decide whether you want to be examined or not. You are the person who can allow anyone else to examine or not.

2)     You XXXXXXX the physician and tell him that I wish to be examined under anesthesia as you are afraid of pain or any other reason. You have the right to demand examination under anesthesia.

3)     Keep in mind that your physician is there to help you and not to hurt you. He has examined thousands of patients before being qualified to examine you. So relax and get examined. If you still need examination under sedation/anesthesia, your physician will provide it I think.

4)     In some cases, examination is not needed and just by measuring your blood pressure and some blood tests you will be declared fine. So just see physician first. You may not need examination.

5) There are various investigations available like x XXXXXXX and MRI which can reduce the need for examination. You can request the same from your physician.
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