Archive for ‘Appointments’

May 20, 2019

#572 – Live Better with RA – Tip #7

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Image courtesy of B S K.

Build Your Team

When you have RA, you may have a tendency to figuratively withdraw and move to an “island,” but don’t.

Your healthcare team is an important part of your journey with RA. Doctors, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, naturopaths, nutritionists, coaches, osteopaths, chiropractors, acupuncturists, therapists and friends all have a role in your health and well-being. You may not need them all, or you may need different ones at different times in your life.

Choose them with care.

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November 6, 2018

#555 – Medical Intake Forms

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Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Whenever I see a new health practitioner, I ask that the medical intake form be emailed to me so that I can print it off and complete it at home.

I do this for three reasons:

  1. I have a fairly detailed medical history and it’s easier to refer to my notes at home.
  2. Dependent on the length of time it takes to complete the form, ulnar deviation makes it difficult to write for any length of time.
  3. I do my utmost to arrive 10 to 15 minutes early for my appointments. However, sometimes traffic, or some other unforeseen event, intervenes. If I’m running late (*quelle horreur!), I’ll at least have completed the intake form so that I’m ready to be whisked into the appointment. (Yes, it’s wishful thinking that all appointments start at the designated time.)

People who have a chronic illness such as RA, tend to have a very extensive health history. As a matter of course, the patient should be given the option of completing the form prior to the appointment. We have the technology, so let’s make use of it.

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January 17, 2018

#546 – When Your Doctor Tells You There’s No More Time

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Image courtesy of everydayplus | freedigitalimages.net.

You have a chronic illness. You go to the doctor with your list of symptoms, but you’re told that there is no more time, then asked to book another appointment.

Your energy is already depleted and you you don’t know how you’re going to drag yourself to another appointment.

 

The solution

Book a double appointment in order to max out on your time and energy and ensure that you are respecting the doctor’s time and that of the other patients, as well. It’s a lot less stressful for all concerned.

 

April 18, 2017

#523 – Blood Test Snapshots

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Image courtesy of Billy W.

I’ve always felt that certain blood test snapshots could be “out of focus”. The results could vary, dependent upon what you ate, how much/little you exercised, the type of rest/sleep you had and the stress you were undergoing.

When I go for a blood test, I want to control as many variables as possible. I prepare, just as I would for an exam. I don’t pig out (who me?) in the preceding days and I do as much as I can to manage my emotions.

Someone else agrees with me. I recently read this on page 66 in Tools of Titans by Tim Ferris: “It’s important to get blood tests often enough to trend, and to repeat/confirm scary results before taking dramatic action.”

He included an anecdote from Dr. Peter Attia, who explained what happened to his platelet and white blood count after he swam from Catalina Island to Los Angeles. (Yes, you read that right!) They changed from his normal to 6 times normal and 5 times normal, respectively.

He adds,

‘I’ve always been hesitant to treat a patient for any snapshot, no matter how bad it looks. For example, I saw a guy recently whose morning cortisol level was something like 5 times the normal level. So, you might think, wow, this guys got an adrenal tumor, right? But a little follow-up question and I realized that at 3 a.m. that morning, a few hours before this blood draw, the water heater blew up in his house.’

There’s one particular phrase in Dr. Attia’s comment that should become a mantra for healthcare professionals: “follow-up questions.”

As a patient, be proactive. Question. Listen. Double-check. Follow up. The latter one is especially important, as you’ll read on Owner Operator.

Does this image turn your stomach?

If you have had enough of getting stressed by the thought of needles, or by blood tests, I can help. Email me to free yourself from this anxiety.

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