There’s an old joke about a guy going to his doctor to complain about pain in one of his arms. He demonstrates the problem to his doctor by lifting his arm above his head and twisting it a certain way. He says, “Doc, it hurts when I do this.” The man’s doctor looks at his patient and tells him, “Then stop doing that“.
Seems pretty obvious, right?
Well, maybe not. When I was laid off from my job as a electronics technician this past September, it changed my life in many ways. Not all the changes were negative. Some were quite positive. One of these positive changes was that the psoriasis I’ve had on my hands for years is now almost completely gone. My right hand is completely psoriasis free. My left hand currently only has one tiny spot of psoriasis that I’m able to manage completely by putting a piece of cloth athletic tape on it.
It’s become clear to me that working everyday with my hands contributed greatly to my problems with psoriasis. Working with my hands didn’t cause my psoriasis, that’s not the way it works. Psoriasis is caused by my autoimmune system causing new skins cells to grow where they are not needed. In my case, it’s the palms of my hands and my fingers.
Why then didn’t any of the doctors I’ve seen for my psoriasis ever tell me to find a job that didn’t require me to work with my hands? Seriously, why?
Instead of telling me that working with my hands was possibly exacerbating my condition, they prescribed a plethora of expensive, toxic drugs, some capable of causing nasty side-effects. Some of the documented possible side-effects were even life threatening. One of these drugs effected my autoimmune system in such a way that it landed me in the emergency room with pneumonia.
What was even worse is that most of these drugs did nothing for my psoriasis. None of them worked long term.
My hands feel great right now. They don’t hurt. I have full movement. There are no infected fissures or cracks on my hands. My life is good. Too bad none of the doctors that treated me for my psoriasis can take any credit for my psoriasis going into remission. In retrospect, they only wasted my time and money.
I’m now left with feeling as though each and every doctor I’ve seen in the past six or seven years is an incompetent quack. That’s how long I was suffering with psoriasis. Not one of these doctors ever told me that working with my hands was making my psoriasis far worse than it needed to be. I even asked if I should find a different line of work, something that doesn’t require me to work with my hands. I was always told that psoriasis was an autoimmune system disease and that it wasn’t caused by anything I was doing.
It will be a long time before I ever trust a doctor again.
Update: I wrote this nearly two years ago, and I’ve since changed my mind about all doctors. Not all doctors are incompetent jackwagons. I’m now lucky to have a great doctor, by far the best I’ve ever had. If you live in the Hagerstown area and are in need of a doctor that doesn’t suck, send me an email and I will give you their info.