Any way to get out of being weighed?

In this part of the Reality Check website, the moderators have saved discussion threads out of the rest of the forum which have addressed a popular issue containing terrific information, or threads that have generated a lot of discussion and which we feel people may well find useful to refer to in future.

Any way to get out of being weighed?

Postby mark_t » Tue Jun 12, 2007 12:43 pm

I hate it whenever I go to the GP or endo and they ask me to step on the scales. Is there any purpose to this especially when it's mid afternoon and you would have put on an extra kilo after eating and drinking? Any way to get out of it without offending your doc (I realise they are trying to monitor you). I weigh myself at home first thing in the morning and think they should just take my word for it.
mark
mark_t
 
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2007 6:05 pm
Location: Melbourne

Postby Leni » Tue Jun 12, 2007 2:07 pm

If you dont want to be weighed then tell them. Their scales are probably more accurate than yours (they get regularly balanced). It can be useful with things like insulin doses (if you are on lots and lots of insulin compared to your weight it could indicate you are insulin resistant and may need other medication), it can be an indicator of other problems (hypothyroidism, which is very common in type 1, has weight gain as a symptom, etc), etc etc. They're not doing it to make you feel bad about your weight. A kilo or two put on because of food and drink is neither here nor there. If you're just worried about being a kilo or two heavier than what you would be at the beginning of the day, I wouldn't worry - they are quite aware of things like that.
Leni
 
Posts: 1188
Joined: Thu Nov 25, 2004 8:10 pm
Location: Sydney

Postby Kate » Tue Jun 12, 2007 2:28 pm

You could ask why they need to know your weight? The ensuing conversation may distract them from original request - or see them talk themselves out of it! But seriously, no test/check/etc should be automatic - there should be a reason and evidence. It is perfectly reasonable to ask why and refuse if there's no reason.
Kate
 
Posts: 5249
Joined: Tue Sep 07, 2004 4:08 pm
Location: Melbourne

Postby Mel » Tue Jun 12, 2007 5:15 pm

Even if there isn't a good reason you can still say no-I actually only thought of that when somebody on here said that they refused to be weighed ages ago. You can refuse any test you want or don't want to be more accurate.

My endo said that if you get bigger then you will need more insulin. I said oh well my basal hasn't changed since last time and my hba1c has gone down so, we can assume that I am at least no bigger than before He shrugged and said he didn't suppose that there was any clinical benefit to weighing me, so we don't do that anymore :)
Mel
 
Posts: 2750
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2004 6:03 pm
Location: Sydney

Postby Catapult » Tue Jun 12, 2007 5:35 pm

Mark, I don't see that 1-2 kg would make THAT much of a difference to your doctor's decisions based on your weight or BMI unless a person was severely underweight and e.g. under 40kg. In that case, 2kg would represent 5% of their total weight and might be important.

As long as the scales at your doctor/endo are the same set each time, your weight would be consistently 1-2 kg more than your fasted weight at home. The doc probably realises this.

I know many women who used to starve themselves the day of their weightwatchers weighin (each week) so they would weigh less on the scales. It's just cheating yourself really. Besides, if you eat regularly every day, the difference (loss) each week shouldn't rely on you starving for a day.

Anyway, as the others said, if you don't want to be weighed, you can state that refusal without giving a reason.

A doctor who relied on his/her patient's "word" might get in medico-legal trouble if they had neglected their patient's weight and it caused a situation to deteriorate. So they would probably have to write down in your notes that you refused your weight to be taken and write down what you claim is your weight.

Cat.
Catapult
admin
 
Posts: 5012
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 8:50 pm

Postby Mel » Tue Jun 12, 2007 7:51 pm

Cat, that's a bit extreme isn't it?

I can't imagine any situation deteriorating purely because of your weight, with no other indicators, eg bp, hba1c, lipids, fasting bsl, etc etc or any decision being made on the basis of your weight (if you are having an operation I think they need to weigh you to work out the amound of anaesthetic but it's not particularly important for a normal endo appt).

I think they should record that you refused to be weighed-that's fair enough but I've never been asked to guestimate my weight since I've declined to be weighed-infact I'd say I had no idea if they asked. If any endo raised an issue of medico legal stuff because I refused to be weighed I run out of the surgery pretty quickly.

I think the worst they'd think is that you had an eating disorder or issue with a body image and the worst thing they could do would be to force the issue.
Mel
 
Posts: 2750
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2004 6:03 pm
Location: Sydney

Postby Be11ydancer » Tue Jun 12, 2007 8:20 pm

I get asked to estimate my weight quite often. They get particularly pushy with asking me to weigh in because I'm a fatty boomba. Most doctors don't like it when I tell them I know my exact weight because I get weighed in at weight watchers so unless it's absolutely a necessary part of treatment and relates to whatever I've come about then no they can not weigh me. Thankfully my GP is pretty cool and never asks me to weigh in.
Dance like it hurts. Love like you need money. Work when people are watching.
Be11ydancer
 
Posts: 1579
Joined: Wed May 18, 2005 11:47 am
Location: Penruff Sydney

Postby Catapult » Wed Jun 13, 2007 11:46 am

Mel> I was thinking in terms of treatments, sometimes insulin, antibiotics, and usually chemotherapy is based on your weight. So if you say you are 70kg and you are in fact 60kg and get overdosed on chemo, the doc can't get sued if he/she wrote down your refusal and what he/she based your chemo calculations on. Or if you get underdosed with antibiotics or other meds and the illness prevails, it's not the doc's fault.

I have seen people with cancer deteriorate (during metastasis) and the only sign was their weight loss and cachexia (not eating - but the oncologist couldn't see that). So if the bloods and scans looked fine, and they didn't want to be weighed, there wouldn't be much to go on.

Cat.
Catapult
admin
 
Posts: 5012
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 8:50 pm

Postby Mel » Wed Jun 13, 2007 1:19 pm

Fair enough Cat, i was trying to keep to the context of an endo appt with pre-existing diabetes.

I used to find the weight thing an issue even when my bmi was 18 and wouldn't go to endo appts because you had to be weighted (idiot endo didn't help matters) so I spose I was trying to provide reassurance to people that the being weighed thing is not the be all and end all-at least with endo appts.
Mel
 
Posts: 2750
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2004 6:03 pm
Location: Sydney

Postby Diana » Wed Jun 13, 2007 2:14 pm

I agree with Mel, I dont really see the importance of weighing someone at every endo appt. I am ok with being weighed at the moment but as a teenager I never allowed them to weigh me at appointments - and yes, this can tend to make the docs believe you have an eating disorder.

The way they weigh you at most doc visits is completely useless anyway. One day I come in wearing jeans and a jumper and probably weigh several kilos more, the next in lighter clothing and the weight is significantly different. I may have just eaten or drunk a bottle of water, theres another kilo or two. Its not like they even ASK you about things like when you last ate a meal! I have a pretty wicked set of scales at home and I weigh myself at the same time each morning, after going to the loo, before drinking or eating anything, in the nude. I am fairly sure that my understanding of my weight is better than theirs.

Yeah, anyway, if you dont want to be weighed just say so and refuse. To tell you the truth though, when I did this it just made them blow the weight issue out of all proportion.
Diana
 
Posts: 295
Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 11:02 am
Location: Perth Australia

Postby kat » Wed Jun 13, 2007 4:52 pm

i used to hate being weigh
however since seeing a new endo i always get weighed and make it in to a challage to lose more weight for next time
also my old endo use to look down if i put on weight and the new endo will tell my how to improve
kat
 
Posts: 537
Joined: Wed Oct 06, 2004 10:43 pm
Location: outer west,melbourne

Postby Anne » Thu Jun 14, 2007 4:23 am

I am being weighed in a room full of other patients every week at my diabetic and pregnancy clinic. I am now the size of a whale so don't care anymore.

I asked a few times how much weight I was expected to put on ,as I thought I was gaining too much too quickly, particularly in the first trimester. My endo said that pregnant women put on weight and that how much did not matter, she'll help me lose it after the birth (apparently). She then added that she was not sure why patients were still weighed in this clinic and maybe we should stop. I guess it is actually relevant in pregnancy in case there is a sudden weight gain which could be sign of complications, so the obstetricians need it more than the diabetes specialists..


I guess for routine appointments you can decline being weighed, especially if you explain to your endo that you are uncomforatble with it and it makes it harder for you to focus on your diabetes management.

I refused to show my bgl book to my endo for a while when I figured out i could not write all the numbers as I felt too guilty about them. After a few such sessions, I decided that I could trust her not to judge me and she was going to make suggestions rather than critics, so I asked her to look at the numbers in order to get her advice with them again. She was OK with this and it gave me time to accept my own readings as well as proved she was interested in helping on my own terms.

It is your health and you are managing most of it so it is important to do it in a way that you are comfortable with, unless there is a serious reason to do it differently.
Carpe diem
Anne
 
Posts: 1215
Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2004 9:23 am
Location: UK

Postby Erin » Thu Jun 14, 2007 7:40 am

My endo never really said anything about my weight until I LOST a few pounds... She thought I had been having a lot of high blood sugars (peeing out all the calories... is how she said it... I loved that woman).

When I said, no, I'm just watching what I eat a little b/c of the season (it was summer) and my A1c was ok, she didn't press.

I guess if you're uncomfortable getting weighed it is fair to ask not to be weighed, but, I see it as useful information for an endo or any doctor really. Gathering information about a patient helps establish a baseline, from which significant deviation could be cause for concern. I dunno... but like I said, if it really makes you uncomfortable the doc should respect that, and if they feel getting your weight is of great importance they should be able to explain why, and do it in a way that is the most comfortable for you.
Erin
 
Posts: 238
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2005 8:39 am
Location: Brooklyn NY

Postby Charlotte » Fri Jun 15, 2007 12:22 pm

I think if you don't want to be weighed, you can just say that you don't want to be weighed. If the nurse or whoever is asking has a really good reason for wanting to weigh you she can discuss it with you. If you are uncomfortable because the scales are in a room full of people you could suggest (in a suggestion box if you want) that they move the scales because many people are uncomfortable with this. You could also say "I prefer not to be weighed" and ask that if they need to document this that they write down that you prefer not to be weighed or decline to be weighed, which sounds a lot better than refuses to be weighed.
Charlotte
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2007 1:36 pm

Postby Catapult » Fri Jun 15, 2007 12:52 pm

The scales at both the public D clinic and my private Endo are kept away from the waiting area, so only you and the receptionist know your weight. At times I've felt like a whale too, and the receptionist has said "oh, i wish i was that weight again". so i felt a lot better quickly. I always take off my shoes and wear the same clothes (jeans and tshirt) so not much difference. I also take out my pockets e.g. wallet, keys and my pump. The receptionists laugh when they see the pump balanced on a handrail or desk and say it can't make any difference. It weighs 200g, so 0.2kg on their scales he he he.

My Endo doesn't comment about my weight unless I have lost some, in which case she is very encouraging and "good on you". She knows the meds I take which can cause weight gain and just staying level indicates a lot of self-restraint with food and some exercise. If she thinks I need to lose weight, she doesn't state it so boldly, but just gently suggests I take up walking again. Thank god she is not a bully or an ignorant Endo. So, I don't have a problem with being weighed despite being overweight.

When I was smaller (BMI 22 or so), I had more problems with people knowing how much I weighed. Sometimes they'd say "but you don't look x kg!". I still felt fat and have since I was 12 (and massively underweight at D diagnosis). I figure that how you feel doesn't have everything to do with the number on the scales, you can feel good being bigger and you can feel awful being smaller (especially if you have an ED).

In terms strictly of D and Endo visits, if you are a child they need to know you are growing, that your D isn't so uncontrolled you aren't growing (likewise with a pregnancy) If you are overweight they would like to see this managed. And if you are underweight they'd want to find out why. So it is probably more important than like to imagine.

Anne I knew a woman 6 months pregnant before she was showing and she bawled her eyes out that her regular size 10 jeans no longer zipped up. One would have thought she'd see it as a normal indicator of a healthy pregnancy and be glad the baby is growing. She had been extreme dieting to keep her weight down. I think the docs want to see some weight gain, not a lot and not too little. An average of 13kg in Australia is touted but everyone I know has been more along the lines of 16kg for the first and more for the second and so forth. I also know a lady who lost 10kg the first 12 weeks due to morning sickness (but quickly gained after 16 weeks).

Cat.
Catapult
admin
 
Posts: 5012
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 8:50 pm

Postby Anne » Sat Jun 16, 2007 8:15 am

Cat
I had put on 13 kg by about the 6th month of pregnancy and have not stopped there. I think in France they recommend 9 - 12kg, luckily in the UK they don't care:) It is a long time since I stopped wearing my size 10 jeans, I have bought size 12, 14,16 and 18 yoga pants along the months and they were so comfy I was quite happy with this.
I have reached a point when people give up their seat spontanesously on the train with a slightly worried look, as if I might pop the baby out during the 25 minutes journey to London :) I wish the birth could be that quick ! My bump looks like if it grows any bigger, it's going to detached itself from me.
Carpe diem
Anne
 
Posts: 1215
Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2004 9:23 am
Location: UK

Postby Mel » Sat Jun 16, 2007 12:35 pm

My bump looks like if it grows any bigger, it's going to detached itself from me.


That's called birth isn''t it :)
Mel
 
Posts: 2750
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2004 6:03 pm
Location: Sydney

Postby Anne » Sun Jun 17, 2007 8:14 am

Mel, I would have thought so, except my baby is trying to move forward instead of down ;)
Carpe diem
Anne
 
Posts: 1215
Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2004 9:23 am
Location: UK


Return to Solid Gold - Some of our Favourites!