So the Slate article generated more than 300 comments, mostly from parents who were stunned to learn of the connection between constipation and bedwetting/daytime accidents.
But one doctor wrote in to basically say, “Duh.”
“The vast majority of pediatricians who aren’t heading toward retirement in the next year fully understand the problem and routinely provide the same advice and treatment,” he wrote.
Well, the vast majority of the comments we got (not to mention Dr. Hodges’ entire practice) suggest that plenty of pediatricians are missing the boat.
What’s more, a couple hours after that doctor posted his comment, I got a call from a friend who had just taken the Slate article, a copy of It’s No Accident and a long list of her 6-year-old’s symptoms to her pediatrician. The doctor — head of pediatrics at a local hospital — dismissed outright the idea that bedwetting and urinary frequency could be related to constipation and refused to order an x-ray.
“She didn’t even pretend to be interested in the article or book,” my friend told me.
My friend’s daughter is peeing constantly and wetting the bed every night and has about a half dozen signs of constipation.
The doc told her “We’ll worry about the bedwetting when she’s 9.” As for the frequency, the doctor said medication might be worth considering.
Holy smokes. As we point out in the book, bladder-relaxing medication is the last thing you want to give a constipated kid because the number-one side-effect is . . . CONSTIPATION.
Of course, this doctor wouldn’t even consider that the child might be constipated. She felt the girl’s abdomen and said,
“Eh, I don’t think so.”
Even before visiting her pediatrician, my friend was nervous about broaching the subject. None of us want our doctor to think we’re some kook or know-it-all. Still, you’d think a pediatrician would give this mom the time of day.
All of which has me wondering: Has anyone else taken It’s No Accident or the Slate article to your doctor? If so, we would love to hear the doctor’s response.
As for my friend, she got a referral to another pediatrician and will be taking the book to the new doc. Stay tuned.