There's nothing wrong with your…

A phrase used regularly by many health professionals and generally rejected by patients with a problem. There’s nothing wrong with your back, neck, shoulder, knee etc. Chances are if you’re in their office you know that something is wrong. My advice on this one after hearing countless patients tell me their own “There’s nothing wrong” stories or similar “It’s in your head” tales is to keep in mind who is telling you that there is nothing wrong.

Everyone will examine you through their own professional lens. Here’s an example: let’s say you have low back pain and your family doctor has sent you to specialists for opinions and treatment options.

First it’s off to a surgeon, they examine you and determine your back pain doesn’t warrant surgery. Your back pain doesn’t require removing bone, cutting tissue or reshaping cartilage so from a surgeon’s perspective there’s nothing wrong with your back.

So now it’s on for some x-rays. The radiologist looks at your x-rays and she doesn’t see any fractures, dislocations or deformities so as far as she can report there is nothing wrong with your back.

You talk to a urologist they check your urine and bladder, the nephrologist looks at your kidneys and the enterologist checks on your digestive tract. None of them see your low back pain because through their respective professional lenses. Your back pain doesn’t show up because it doesn’t fit into their expertise or expectations.

If you’ve been through this I have an important translation for you: “There’s nothing wrong” really means “I can’t find your problem” or “I can’t treat your problem”.

Understanding this very important translation should help you realize that you are ultimately responsible for your own health and you may need to take the extra step to find the right health practitioner who can find and treat your problem.