Pediatricians’ Pet Peeves


My, it’s interesting to see what happens when pediatricians get a chance to vent about parents! I learned a lot in writing “Pediatricians’ Pet Peeves” for a number of regional parenting magazines. Here’s the first part of the article. Head over to New Jersey Family to read the whole thing.

We all know the complaints we parents have now and then about visits to the doctor’s office. But aren’t you just a bit curious about what irritations pediatricians would share with the parents of their pint-sized patients if they had the chance? Here’s what your pediatrician would love to tell you (but you won’t hear it from him).

“As tempting as it is to ask the doctor to ‘just check his brother’s ears while we’re here,’ a piece of a medical encounter is no encounter at all,” says Dr. David Hill, an adjunct assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of North Carolina Medical School. “We need to know what’s going on with the ears; what other symptoms he’s having; whether he has had allergies, asthma, or ear surgery in the past; what medications he’s on; what he’s allergic to; whether anyone smokes in the home; and what illnesses run in the family,” says Hill, who’s also a medical expert on

“If his ears are bothering him, it could be strep throat or part of a sinusitis or an illness that might kick up an asthma attack. So please, if you’re worried about multiple siblings, make each one a separate appointment to ensure he or she gets the doctor’s full attention.”

Also, Hill says, “Our expertise is the only thing doctors have to sell. Would you ask your grocer, ‘Since I’m buying this milk, could you just give me half a watermelon?’”

Read the rest at New Jersey Family

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2 Responses to “Pediatricians’ Pet Peeves”

  1. LaneyMeyer says:

    Nice way to force already cash-strapped and busy parents to make two appointments. It’s not hard to look at the ears of a sibling while the other is in at a well check.

  2. Kathy says:

    I have to disagree on this one, for the reasons the doc states. Gotta get out the chart, get a history. It’s not just a simple ear check, if you’re being a responsible doc.