Are patients or doctors responsible?
- By: Teresa Pun
The doctor's role is to diagnose a condition and recommend an appropriate plan of management based on current evidence. With that information, a patient can make an informed decision. But what if the patient makes the “wrong” decision?
My friend was prescribed a corticosteroid inhaler and unbeknown to her doctor, she was only taking one puff every other day instead of two puffs twice a day. When I asked her why, she said that she didn't like the idea of having to take a drug every day and that the inhaler made her cough worse.
I explained to her that a steroid does not work on an “as needed” basis and that she needed to take it every day as prescribed to reap the benefits of reduced inflammation. I also said that it was unlikely that the inhaler had anything to do with the frequency of her cough. Whether or