Review of Dr. Shelly Agarwal, MD
It’s been about four months since I saw Dr. Agarwal last. After the events of last summer, and having gotten to know the other OBGYNs at the Tinley Park DuPage Medical Group practice (as recommended by her), I just can’t go back to her.
For Those Who Want To Call This A Vendetta Review
Let me also preface the rest of this review by saying I know how hard it is to become a doctor and BE a doctor. I think much of the medical profession is unfair to all involved—from the doctors, to the nurses, to the assistants, secretaries, managers, janitors, technicians, etc. I don’t pretend to understand that world, but I did get a glimpse into it for four years (you can check my LinkedIn).
I also sympathize with her as a woman, but writing about your experience with a doctor does not mean you have a vendetta to destroy their career. I do not mean to invalidate Agarwal’s credibility, but I feel that I need to do write this preface because I know there is possibility o misunderstanding with this review. This blog is not focused on any specific area or subject, so the medical reviews I’m writing about is for this short period of time while I’m becoming a mom.
So please to the haters and the trolls, know that I mean no harm—I simply want to give a fair criticsm, and if that saves someone strife I’m happy. If this review make said doctor want to adjust, all the more better for everyone who sees her in the future. That’s what reviews can do: help both sides (doctor and patients).
My First Office Visit
My first visit with Dr. Agarwal was this summer, three weeks after my husband and I learned we were pregnant with our first child. She had been recommended to me by our new PCP (primary care physician) Dr. John Obert-Hong after we learned of my pregnancy.
On first impression she looked very tired with visible dark circles under her eyes, like she had just come off working all last night or something. I immediately sympathized with her.
It was a quick first appointment, didn’t get any “this is my philosophy of care” or any pregnancy handouts, it was just a “let’s do your annual pap smear, do a quick ultra sound of your baby, and goodbye.” It was a good first visit, but I can see in retrospect that maybe my husband and I were being too understanding. I left only hoping things would continue to grow from there and that I’d get a better sense of her bedside manner over time. My favorite part was the ultrasound, getting to see our baby for the first time.
The Beginning of the End: Metro South
I still remember that August morning, clear as day. I was seven weeks pregnant and experiencing the worst pain in my life, all on my right side. I was vomiting and unable to keep anything down (even plain ol’ water). My husband called Dr. Agarwal’s office and someone from her team recommended that we go to the Emergency Room at Metro South in Blue Island (big mistake). Later I learned why we were urged to go to Metro South when there were much closer ERs to us: Dr. Agarwal’s main office is in Blue Island, not the Tinley Park office.
My terrible experience at Metro South deserves its own review, but this review is about Dr. Agarwal, so I wont digress. Essentially she was MIA, despite being closer to her at her preferred hospital, and being so early in my pregnancy when the risk of miscarriage is the highest. When she did finally stop by to see me on my second and final day in the hospital, she acted like this was no big deal, when in fact it was as I would later learn.
UPDATE: As of late 2019 Metro South Hospital in Blue Island Closed. No suprise.
At my second monthly pregnancy appointment with her (which happened to be two weeks after my stay at Metro South Hospital) my husband and I saw an arrogance, stubbornness, and lack of interest surface.
What I distinctly remember from that second appointment was how adamant she was about our due date. Knowing our conception date, we felt that the date she came up with seemed way too early and she got offended by our asking if she was 100% sure. She had determined our due date according to my last period, but what we learned from the three other OBGYNs at the Tinley Park practice (and ultra sounds done in October and December) was that she was incorrect. Due date/age of the fetus is typically determined by the baby’s size, not your period. So in the end the due date for our baby was changed.
Dr. Agarwal is a young physician, so there aren’t many reviews of her, but two recent ones stood out because they echoed my experience:
“Extremely close minded and condescending. I was treated like a child at times who had little or no experience with child birth.”
“Would describe her as lazy/uninterested”
There’s a part of me that feels bad not going for a third visit with Dr. Agarwal, but one of the benefits of having your husband come with you to your pregnancy appointments is you have a witness who can tell you if what you experienced was accurate or not. He’s been with me through this entire pregnancy journey and I trust his judgment very much. In the end though it’s yours that matters most. As much of a loyalist and purist that I am about doctors, having this baby has taught me that it’s very important to feel and have your doctor demonstrate their commitment to your care. If you feel like your OBGYN won’t be there for you when you most need them, trust your gut and shop around until you find the doctor who makes you feel like they will have your back.
Other Reviews of Dr. Agarwal
Healthgrades (Average rating: 4/5)
WebMd (Average rating: 2.5/5)
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