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Tips For Choosing a Doctor

Health Tip: Pick a Doctor Who's a Peer

The April issue of Esquire features a Q and A with Dr. Mehmet Oz called "The Lightning Round" — as in, if you had the good doctor cornered at a party, what burning questions would you ask him? One of the questions was: What's the single most important thing to look for in a doctor? Dr. Oz's answer: Choose a doctor like you, or who treats other people like you.

Obviously there are other considerations, like which doctors are nearby and covered by your insurance. But a physician who treats other patients in your age range will be well-versed in the issues you might face. Even better, Oz adds, "you want your doctor to be around your age or younger (unless you're 17). That way you can have a doctor for life, and that continuity is a big help in diagnosing and predicting problems as you age."

I definitely appreciate that my doctor treats other patients around my same age, so this seems like a smart idea. What do you think? Is your doc in your peer group?

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Join The Conversation
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 6 years
No, my family doctor is older than me. But his wife is my age. LOLSeriously, sometimes I think he uses his wife to try to understand me. But I think he's come to learn that his wife and I have nothing in common, so when he does that, it's useless.That notwithstanding, my doctor is terrific. He's taken good care of me and my family.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 6 years
No, my family doctor is older than me. But his wife is my age. LOL Seriously, sometimes I think he uses his wife to try to understand me. But I think he's come to learn that his wife and I have nothing in common, so when he does that, it's useless. That notwithstanding, my doctor is terrific. He's taken good care of me and my family.
Spectra Spectra 6 years
My doctor is probably about 10 years older than I am and she's a woman. I think she's pretty well-schooled on what to look for in women my age and she stays very up to date on the latest health findings and journals. My old doctor was really great, too...he was the same age as my parents and he specialized in sports medicine. He'd seen a lot of patients and he also kept up with the findings. It really depends on the doctor...you can have an old doctor that doesn't stay up to date with things or one that does, so it's definitely up to you as a patient to choose a doctor that you feel comfortable with.
Spectra Spectra 6 years
My doctor is probably about 10 years older than I am and she's a woman. I think she's pretty well-schooled on what to look for in women my age and she stays very up to date on the latest health findings and journals. My old doctor was really great, too...he was the same age as my parents and he specialized in sports medicine. He'd seen a lot of patients and he also kept up with the findings. It really depends on the doctor...you can have an old doctor that doesn't stay up to date with things or one that does, so it's definitely up to you as a patient to choose a doctor that you feel comfortable with.
i-heart-monster i-heart-monster 6 years
For some reason, I used to only like male doctors, but now, I really like females. I've never found a doctor that was in her early thirties... I should try that when we relocate.
Renees3 Renees3 6 years
my gyno is an old man. He graduated his residency before my dad was born. I was worried at first, but man this guy has seen EVERYTHING and he's super up to date on things. I love him! I usually have men dr, the women drs I've had I've never liked. But I don't have a lot of choice on my insurance so I go wherever
jazzybelle jazzybelle 6 years
My husband is a doctor and so are most of our friends, I would go for a doctor in his early thirties; this way he is recently out of med school so he is up-to-date on new medical findings and procedures, but he has been practicing for a few years so he's not brand new - the perfect combo! Plus he will age with you. I have a friend who is a pharmacist and she said you can sometimes tell the age of a doctor by what medicine he prescribes - and she has had an old doctor prescribe a medication that was off the shelf for more than 10 years!
jazzybelle jazzybelle 6 years
My husband is a doctor and so are most of our friends, I would go for a doctor in his early thirties; this way he is recently out of med school so he is up-to-date on new medical findings and procedures, but he has been practicing for a few years so he's not brand new - the perfect combo! Plus he will age with you. I have a friend who is a pharmacist and she said you can sometimes tell the age of a doctor by what medicine he prescribes - and she has had an old doctor prescribe a medication that was off the shelf for more than 10 years!
aimeeb aimeeb 6 years
I have no idea if she is but even if she isn't I love my doctor and have no plans on changing.
ilanac13 ilanac13 6 years
i like to find doctors that are about my parent's age. i've found that the drs that i've seen that seem closer to my age don't make me feel secure about things. i know that they are more recently out of med school so they are up on the new technologies more but still...
danni2009 danni2009 6 years
Nope, because I'm only 22, therefore at my age people are just about leaving medical school and taking on junior posts, I think people usually qualify as a GP in their 30s because of all the exams required. I find younger doctors to be more understanding and patient than the older ones, there's one particular lady at my doctor's surgery who is just pure evil (told me there was nothing wrong with me when I couldn't breathe...)
javsmav javsmav 6 years
for the past few years I've gone to a clinic at a teaching hospital. the residents were about my age and the attendings were also pretty cool too maybe because they spend so much time with the residents). but now i moved and have new insurance, so i'll see what i can find.
misskacie misskacie 6 years
I don't really know of many doctors my age-- they're (mostly) still in school at this point, but I definitely have women doctors. I have nothing against male doctors and had them when I was younger, but I find these days a woman is more likely to respond to my "gut feeling" that something isn't right. My gut's always been correct, but male doctors have been quicker to give me the brush-off.I do also try for doctors in their 30's, they seem to be the most clued-in and open-minded. Just my experience.
misskacie misskacie 6 years
I don't really know of many doctors my age-- they're (mostly) still in school at this point, but I definitely have women doctors. I have nothing against male doctors and had them when I was younger, but I find these days a woman is more likely to respond to my "gut feeling" that something isn't right. My gut's always been correct, but male doctors have been quicker to give me the brush-off. I do also try for doctors in their 30's, they seem to be the most clued-in and open-minded. Just my experience.
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