I have no problem telling the receptionist on the phone why I want to see the doctor. True they are not doctors but they are a part of the doctors team. Anything you tell them should be held in confidence. I think it helps them to know in advance the general purpose of your visit. They may have different rooms for various procedures. If you take your car to a dealer for service, the service writer will ask you what the problem is. If you tell him it squealing wheels he may send you to the brake area. If your complaint is a thumping noise in the transmission it helps him to know that also. I had to make a follow up appt once for a minor surgery by my GP. I was happy to tell the receptionist why when I called. Its because I was put into a room set up for small surgeries, and the doctor only did the surgeries before the lunch hour, after he was done with his morning patients. If I had just asked for an appt wiht no reason I may have been given an appt in the morning and had to wait, or perhaps come another day if another proceduree was scheduled.
Along the same lines, I do not like standing in the waiting room and have the receptionist ask me details about what the problem is when other people are in the room waiting. Put in an embarassing position once I reminded the receptionist that there are HIPA procedures and that it was rude to ask in such an open and public way. If pushed, I have responded that I gave the reason when I made the appt.
Several years ago I had bilateral inguinal hernia surgery. The doctor did most of his surgeries on Thursday. Consequently most of his surgery follow up visits were on the following Monday. On Friday after the surgery my scrotum swelled up to the size of an extremely large papaya. It was not painful, and there was some discoloration. I called the doctors office and was told by the nurse that that was normal after that type of surgery.
On Monday, I gingerly walked into the doctors office with my scrotum still swollen to an abnormal size. I was sore from the surgery, and my scrotum was tender, but not hurting. I saw other guys come in walking the same as I did and I knew they must have also had the hernia surgery. As I sat in the waiting, a girl on his office staff began talking to the other girls behind the counter. I heard her tell the other girls that she had walked into a room with something for the doctor as he was examining a patient. She said she had never seen anything so big, and the girls started laughing and giggling. Based on the circumstances and her gestures, I'm guessing it was another swollen scrotum. I mentioned it to the doctor who said he would take care of it.