^ Excellent description. I had similar talks with my mother's doctors as she recuperated from a stroke. Although after arguing with them, they did change her medication a couple of times. Apparently they weren't married to all the crap they were prescribing. It's just this thing they do.
It's the same with veterinary care. I recently took my brother's cat to the vet. He thought the cat was constipated. It turns out it was a urinary tract issue male cats often get. They prescribed an antibiotic. I get home and look into it and find that cat urinary problems rarely have anything to do with bacteria. It's about diet. I looked up all kinds of home treatments some of which involve ACV, surprise, surprise. Plenty of people swear success with it. And then there were plenty of other treatments I didn't look into. The antibiotic cost $35. And I don't want it given to the cat.
( I also happened to have misplaced it and I don't know where. I need to go look under the car seat. )
Also, my dog has had ear problems since I adopted him two or so years ago. They gave me antibiotic ear drops which never got rid of the problem. I tried using the safflower oil I use on his skin since oil is a solvent for ear wax and antimicrobial. It helped as much as the vet stuff. At least he'd stop scratching for a while. Then I found the enzyme based stuff recommended in a discussion forum, found it had lots of great reviews on Amazon, tried it. And he hasn't had a problem since.
I am so glad your dog and your brothers cat got better from safer and more rational treatments. The problem I see is the fact that we live in a society so trusting of doctors and so untrusting of common sense, natural alternatives. I have arguments with my mother who is constantly telling me to go to the Dermatologist, as if they have some magic information I have never heard before. I have cured more ailments researching information myself then taking what a Dr. prescribes. I've been to dermatologists more than 20 times and its the same thing, round of these antibiotics, prescription for that, etc. It never lasts, and in the long run I become dependent on things that actually worsen my acne.
For example, at this point, the only thing that remotely clears my cystic acne is topical antibiotics, which is the only prescription drug I am willing to take at this point for acne. This wasn't the case 7 years ago before I began taking them. BP used to clear me up well. So now I am stuck with having to go on and off of the damn topical clindamycin because I have to go to work presentable, not to mention sleep at night. I try and go months without the clindamycin, but my cysts eventually become so painful I throw my hands up and say "F-it!", give me the damn antibiotic lotion...I just need the pain to stop! Before I began seeing derms and taking prescribed meds, my acne was manageable, now its out of control and almost untreatable. But where am I supposed to go when i'm in pain and I need to meet a client for my job? There is nowhere else for me to go, natural Derms don't exist.....so I give in to the "treat the symptom" Doctors even though I know its bad for me. I feel like all medicine is now somewhat like this, but Dermatology, much like Psychiatry....seems to be the worse. They are very set in their methods of treatment of prescribing drugs exclusively with little practical advice. They are unwilling to see things from another view. Whatever happened to "first do no harm?"
I feel like a lot of people in the holistic forum, yourself included, would make great MD's or DO's. I have thought about it myself. My brother is an Orthopedic Surgeon and many of the women in my family are Nurses. I just doubt my ability to get through a med school program trying to defend positions that my peers and superiors would consider looney. As if Med School wasn't hard enough! It just seems like an uphill battle of constantly defending positions and being looked down upon.