Narcissistic Doctors

There are hundreds of thousands of ethical, highly skilled physicians and surgeons that perform professionally every day to save or heal lives. They have a deep understanding of the body and mind and use their expertise to help patients because they genuinely care about the human race. But then there are the narcissistic physicians.

I am talking about the narcissists who became doctors because they learned, early in their lives, that was where money, power, control over others, and admiration could be found. Did these narcissists want to become primary care doctors or pediatricians? Absolutely not. They knew exactly where to go to reap the benefits they sought–to the “specialties” such as radiology, orthopedics, oncology, plastic surgery, and anesthesiology and so on. Please don’t misunderstand–there are many gifted and dedicated specialists who are not narcissists and care deeply about their patients. We need them and they perform a great service. However, it is safe to predict that narcissists would be over-represented in these fields.

Unfortunately, narcissists are naturally inclined to gravitate toward the professions which guarantee plentiful and continuous provisions of “narcissistic supply”. They seek to interact with people only from their position of authority, advantage, and perceived superiority. In this power position, they are able to elicit automatic admiration, adulation, and affirmation from patients– or failing that, their fear and obedience.

As compared to their non-narcissistic colleagues, narcissists in authority lack empathy and ethical standards. Thus, they are more prone to immorally, callously and consistently abuse their position and patients’ rights. Have you ever tried questioning a narcissistic doctor? They display tremendous confidence and presence, and with their walls covered with diplomas from the best medical institutions, they will let you know in no uncertain terms that they are the experts and that they know what is best. With their perfect backgrounds and expert personalities, most people would never suspect that the physician standing before them is so narcissistic that he or she believes that they can never be wrong–not in the consultation room, examining room, reading medical reports, in the emergency room, or in the surgical suite.

This is a very worrisome trait. Narcissists are liars and exaggerators. They misrepresent their credentials, knowledge, talents, skills, and achievements. A narcissist doctor would rather let patients die than expose his ignorance. So many people are in such admiration of doctors that they can’t imagine that their physician could be wrong—sometimes gravely wrong.

There have been too many misdiagnoses and mistakes made by narcissistic physicians due to their intense need to be right. Obviously, there are incorrect diagnoses and mistakes made by non-narcissistic doctors as well. But in the case of the narcissistic physician, they will find a way not to be wrong at all costs. You misheard or misunderstood, it was the nurse’s fault, or you must not remember him telling you it might be something else. A narcissist cannot, and will not, apologize or take responsibility.

If you or a family member asks them a question that in any way can be perceived as questioning their authority or their expertise, be ready to receive a snide, disparaging remark bordering on insult. Asking for a second opinion is tantamount to outright betrayal. Narcissists know how to instinctually find your weak area and expose it. You have to remember that you have the right to seek and know the truth about your medical condition, in clear terms, or as an advocate for someone else.

Furthermore, narcissistic doctors don’t listen to their patients. They may go for a “quick fix” and not even try to find the cause. Every day problems bore them. They want to get on to the next patient, the next potential intricate procedure or surgery that will garner their much needed attention and admiration as well as confirm their superiority to themselves.

Perhaps the most frightening trait is that the narcissist physician is not deterred by potential punishment. He does not believe that the laws and policies apply to him. His sense of entitlement, along with the conviction of his own superiority, leads him to believe that he is invincible. He truly believes that he is immune and not vulnerable. The narcissist holds rules and regulations in disdain and human penalties equally in disdain. He regards other peoples’ needs and emotions as weaknesses that can be exploited if it will benefit him.

Trust your own judgment and your intuition. Don’t let a narcissistic doctor manipulate or intimidate you. If you are the patient, remember it is your life and wellbeing at stake, not the doctor’s. Be an advocate for yourself or for the patient in your care, stand strong and be unwavering about your right to ask questions and receive detailed answers or explanations.

References:

  1. http://www.zimbio.com/Narcissistic+personality+disorder/articles/99f-c6jrGlY/Narcissistic+Doctors+Always+Right+Never+Wrong
  2. http://samvak.tripod.com/journal70.html
  3. http://www.healthyplace.com/personality-disorders/malignant-self-love/narcissists-in-positions-of-authority/
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About Alexander Burgemeester

9 Responses to “Narcissistic Doctors”

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  1. Kara says:

    My primary care physician is a narcissist. His behavior is erratic and he is inconsistent. When questioned he simply does not respond. I am in the process of finding another healthcare provider.

  2. Catherine says:

    Thank you- so much, for posting this article. As a society, we assign to the individual the integrity the role of being a ‘doctor’ implies- they do not have to ‘win’ our trust- they already have it. Narcissistic doctors are the ultimate wolves in sheep’s clothing.

    I have actually been lied about- outrageously- by a doctor who, it seems, decided to ‘play god’. Mercifully- if you can call it that, he was rather stupid in the way he went about it leading to the Scottish ombudsman seeing through him and his statements… I got through it in the end. It was a horrendously traumatic experience to go through, however. And I certainly wouldn’t have coped without my family. And even with that my sense of trust has been severely damaged.

    Narcissistic individuals are very callous indeed.

    • Kara says:

      Catherine I agree. Having a doctor take advantage of a patient’s vulnerability is truly a traumatic and lasting experience. Thankfully you were able to find resolution.

  3. Kate says:

    I like the explication describing the Narcissist dr. And I will be quoting it in court. Drs have lots of money & can buy expensive lawyers, victims virtually have no rights as a lawyer will not take a case unless he can make thousands off you. Malpractice suites are costly, you are required to have other Drs. testify against your dr almost impossible to do for they have a code of ethics between them. So here is what I have done and why.
    My dr deliberately gave me a hormone pellet with fillers in it that I told her I would have a serious reaction too, she claimed they were 100% natural no fillers. First LIE. 2nd she gave me more than twice the amount I asked for knowing my previous dr had reduced my dosage due to problems. All this was done because “I had told her what to do” after I started having severe problems she then admitted the pellets had fillers, I also knew from my reaction that she gave me more of it then told too. Her rely was “it is not too much” if my dr of 5 yrs said it was then who gives this dr the right after an 8 min consultation to say otherwise? I also asked her why she would give me what I told her not too after being informed I would have serious problems, her words were “I don’t do what my patients want I do what I think is best” I ended up being sick for almost two years, the pellets were time released, and for 9 months I was poisoned daily I have never been so fatigued in my life, I could hardly function, suffered with a headache for 8 months straight. I have been detoxing my body for two years now and finally seeing some improvement. No Lawyer would help me. So I recently filed a lawsuit in small claims charging her with Violating my civil rights by giving me something she was told not too, Lying to me right up to the moment she surgically implanted them & lying about how much she gave me. Then too make matters worse when I told her to remove them she refused making one excuse after another. Suing for pain & suffering, Battery Tort, Assault, Negligence and punitive damages. Will I win I don’t know, but I did record my phone conversations proving she deliberately went against my instructions and my will thereby voiding any consent given prior as it was obtained fraudulently. Her actions prove she is not only a Narcissist buy a danger to her patients. She even went so far as to alter my medical records trying to cover up her incompetence.

    She has obtained an atty. while I am left on my own due lack of finances, if anyone out there is reading this & knows an atty. in Georgia who pro bono or on contingency wants to see justice done please let me know as I will save this page and check back periodically. If even one dr can be made accountable for their actions without costly court costs & greedy lawyers in higher courts then my case could set a pressidence showing narcissistic Drs. that they can no longer deliberately destroy patients lives and get away with it.

    She violated her hypocritical oath “I will do no harm to my patients” violated my rights to say what I will and will not accept in my body. She is required by law to inform her patients what she is giving them and how much & required to get permission before she can proceed, she obtained my consent through lying & fraud, committed assault by severely bruising me, put the pellets other than where she was told too, and committed an act of violence toward me. So why is it I can’t find anyone to help me simply because I am poor. Is there NO ONE out there interested in justice and putting a stop to Drs. Like her? Because I could sure use some help. One thing I forgot to mention is my blood pressure soared, as high as 224/123 at times, it remains in the danger zone as I am unable to take prescription medicines due to severe reactions so she as also put my life at risk. The only thing that has helped me is I was an herbalist for 33 yrs.

    • KittyKat says:

      I know a lawyer who might help. I havent talked to him in a while, but in certain cases he won’t require payment until after things are over and done. He even helps some of his clients out financially if they need it. What he loans is lumped into the final price, but he’ll help them if they really need it.

  4. Michelle King says:

    As a physician I must salute the author for shedding light on this rampant, oftentimes abusive, issue in healthcare today. This is problematic not only for patients, yet also for non-narcissistic colleagues attempting to effectively serve those patients. I sincerely thank you.

  5. Roy Wall says:

    I live in Kendal, Cumbria and the local NHS seems riddled with narcissistic doctors and psychiatrists. I think they are particularly attracted to this semi-rural backwater.

    A particular feature of narcissists that I have noticed is that they “flock together”, i.e., they admire and defend each other, and consequently appear as an organized block to anyone requiring treatment who refuses to grovel in their presence.

  6. Andy says:

    I went to med school in the 90s at a UC school. I estimate that in a class of 100 students, only about 10 to 20 of them were the real McCoy. I mean, normal, caring, smart, dedicated to helping people. You have to be firing on all cylinders to make a good doctor. And also the training encouraged the dehumanization of doctors in training so that even someone not full blown narcissistic could be pushed in that direction.

  7. kat says:

    Narcissist lawyers are horrid as well-they have no ethics and no problem using people,and actually even bar association won’t do anything to them!My ex lawyer slanders me,never did his job and now stalks me,no one cares!and it’s not even a criminal case,personal injury!

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