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5 Must-Haves for Your Next Doctor’s Appointment

Doctors Hand

  1. A scribe
    This is a person who takes copious notes so that you know what the staff said to you and what questions and homework you are responsible for before your next visit.
  2. All your Stats
    • You must know (mostly this one pertains to the USA) your completed medical history, dates, and medications you have taken over your entire life time and when you started and stopped them.
    • Your weight when you were 12 and your weight now, your weight tomorrow and your hoped for weight.
    • All the records of your immunizations, nose bleeds and accidents of any kind that you have ever been a participant.
    • And your eye color.
    • Your height on July 16, 1984 if you were born by that date.
    • Do you have in hand all of your x-rays, cat scans, and dental records for the past 18 months? You do know that you own these now? Are they on disk or your Blackberry? Have you signed permission so that your chiropractor can glance at your pictures?
    • Date of your last eye exam and your prescription.
  3. Your parents birth and death dates and any disorders that they had in their life time or whether they were genetically programmed to like Catsup or not? Not to mention 4 generations of allergy sufferers, heart problems, cancer, or kidney stones? What did you eat during the holiday week and did you by chance over eat at any occasion during the season? Drink? Smoke?
  4. Your food and exercise routine for the last two weeks and how your digestion is doing? Have you had any tests performed by another physician in the last month or had major surgery that was not ordered up by your primary care physician?
  5. A list of why you are here now and what is your problem, including a brief but medical description of your symptoms and how aggressive you have been in treating your symptoms yourself and what do you hope for outcomes for your treatment and visit today?

You do have all of your prescriptions in hand and know that if they are not my favorite kind, I will change the prescription to something you might be happier with? Do you need refills?

This is because all of your medical records are archived in some secret location in Georgia, unless you live in Georgia and then they are in a secret location in Idaho.

Warning this is only pertinent for your Doctor’s Appointment not for an Emergency Room Visit. You must know that this is totally awesome list but not the only list available on the Internet.

And you think I am kidding?

Related Posts:

Becoming another Persons Advocate Firts Thoughts
Becoming Another Persons Advocate Second Post
Personal Health Records

12 Responses to “5 Must-Haves for Your Next Doctor’s Appointment”

  1. Davina Says:

    Hi Patricia. I thought you were kidding… LOL. You have an excellent attitude!

    I just found out today that I have to have surgery and I’m going to follow your lead here. Thank you for setting such a good example. I’m concerned about the surgery — it’s nothing serious — but I’ve NEVER had surgery before, nor anaesthetic. I’m terrified to be “put under”. Worse… I’m on a 3-month waiting list so I have lots of time to “think” about it.

    Davinas last blog post..How Curious Moments Add Value

  2. Dot Says:

    @Davina – Sorry to hear that. The 3-month wait is awful! I’ve had general anesthesia four times in my ilfe, and felt very good when I woke up from them.

    @Patricia – Very Funny! I keep a printed list of my prescriptions in my wallet, since there are usually 10 or 11 of them. The doctor’s staff makes a copy and puts it in my file. I also have them in my Palm, and I used to keep it updated with which refills I needed, but now our insurance company’s online pharmacy page lists that information, so I go there. I also check each prescription before leaving the doctor’s office, because they often forget to mark them for refills or other minor things.

    Dots last blog post..Question for Subscribers

  3. patricia Says:

    Davina,
    It is most helpful for me to find the humor as soon as possible in a situation since this has been my life story! The after anaesthetic medication they give you really lifts your spirits – go with the feelings of sleep – Dot is right it is not really a problem – They have perfected it since I was a child and it’s now kind of the best part!

    I am offering I will come hold your hand and be your advocate if you would like? Surgery is scary and should not be taken lightly and those waiting periods – yikes….they can be awful or a good thing….Your choice.

    Dot,
    Oh I am glad you found this funny – I was hoping to break free from my intensity here….Thank you, Thank you!
    I miss my Palm – I am saving money for a Blackberry curve…You really do have to be your own advocate and keep your records current and in hand. I am back to keeping all my food records on a Word chart, plus exercise, and all the details…and my ins. company does do a print out for apps. on line now too – that is so helpful…wish it covered supplements. Let’s keep building on this information – maybe you and I should put out an ebook?

  4. Jannie Funster Says:

    Oh no – what’s my eye color!??! :)

    Loved the part about idaho / Georgia.

    Jannie Funsters last blog post..Does It Mean I’m Crazy?

  5. patricia Says:

    Jannie,
    The amazing thing is that part is not made up, although I think now there are a couple more secret locations to professionally archive medical records!…nor is the eye color question a fabrication!…

  6. Jannie Funster Says:

    Hmmn, that is interesting. I suppose if people wear colored contacts it is not a true reflection of their coloring as it could relate to skin cancer odds? That’s my very uneducated guess.

    Jannie Funsters last blog post..Sunday May 10th 7:30 p.m.

  7. Mama Zen Says:

    This is absolutely hilarious and absolutely true!

    Mama Zens last blog post..Grande

  8. patricia Says:

    Jannie,
    I think the eye color question is to catch one off guard and figure out if you fit the information on your profile? I maybe messing up the process here, but it does rather jump out at one at the time!

  9. patricia Says:

    Mama Zen,
    Thank you for the nice words and Welcome!
    With my 90 year old mum I ended up carrying a whole canvas bag with me every visit to have all the requirements to answer all the questions. It is truly getting to be take care of yourself and your records world!
    I am working on getting to the humor part of the experience

  10. Ruth Says:

    Ugh, I’m switching doctors right now and really not looking forward to going to a new one. Why is there so much more drama now than when I was a kid?

    Ruths last blog post..Could I Get More Obsessed With My Own Life?

  11. Cricket Says:

    What a list. I do believe this. Dylan was very sick as a child and each time I was referred to another doctor I dreaded the “application” that I had to complete.

    You will laugh at this one. I ended up making a resume that listed every little detail I knew about our family history, etc. I would staple it to the application and write see attached.

    It is so crazy what they put us through.

    Crickets last blog post..Validation

  12. patricia Says:

    Ruth,
    I think Doctor’s and Minister’s knew more about people when we were kids – not as much about medicine as we know now, but more about the care involved in healing. I think we need to remember that the Insurance Companies are driving medicine by the numbers now – not the caring.

    Cricket,
    I made a medical family tree for several generations back and attached it too the forms. When my mum fractured her spine I just created my own forms even and filled out the health ins. companies, on line health history form, which I would print out.
    I sat 24/7 at her bedside for several days and then went home to rest – at 3am the Doctor we were waiting for came in and prescribed a whole gambit of new medications with no discussion, I was away for a few hours – They made her so ill and she felt so poorly – it took her working with hospice counselors and nurses to get over the anger – let go – and stop taking all the meds that were keeping her pumped up and going when she just wanted to let go and be free a year earlier…
    The Doctor was just out of surgery and thought he would save himself another trip…he never check out her patient forms and decision forms, but then held firm that he was in charge of her health care.
    Good parenting – good medical advocacy…awesome sharing!
    Thank you