Need advise on upcoming appointment

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Joannie, Oct 17, 2002.

  1. Joannie

    Joannie New Member

    My four month wait is about over to see the Rheumotologist. Seems like I have waited forever for it to come. I want to be prepared for the appointment and was hoping that some of you could give me advise. I do not know what to expect from the appointment nor do I know what I should take with me as for medical records. My Doctor and I agreed I should take in my records due to the fact I have all of them also. The problem is I fear taking all of them due to the fact that there are sooooo many. {Left many Doctors' wanting to run out of the room when seeing the file size..} Are there certain things he would prefer to see over the rest? Also should I keep a pain journal for the next week prior to the appointment for him to get a better idea of what my days are like? Any help from you all would be truly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your advise.
    Joannie
  2. Joannie

    Joannie New Member

    My four month wait is about over to see the Rheumotologist. Seems like I have waited forever for it to come. I want to be prepared for the appointment and was hoping that some of you could give me advise. I do not know what to expect from the appointment nor do I know what I should take with me as for medical records. My Doctor and I agreed I should take in my records due to the fact I have all of them also. The problem is I fear taking all of them due to the fact that there are sooooo many. {Left many Doctors' wanting to run out of the room when seeing the file size..} Are there certain things he would prefer to see over the rest? Also should I keep a pain journal for the next week prior to the appointment for him to get a better idea of what my days are like? Any help from you all would be truly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your advise.
    Joannie
  3. ANNE_MARIE

    ANNE_MARIE Guest

    Good for you, to be thinking the way you are.
    If I were you, (and yes, I am and have been, and will be in your shoes) I always take ALL of my records, ask them to make copies for them selves, and return them back to you. they will want all of them. the DR will read all that he/she feels they must. a pain journal is an excellent idea ! keep one, all the time. also, add in it depression, what meds help, hurt, what you do when you are in pain, on a scale of one to ten, ( 10 being worst) try to keep that in mind, thats standard medical language. be sure to know where it hurts, and what activities help and harm you. they will want to know if it : burns, feels sharp, dull, constant, intermittant, throbbing, stings, numb, tingly, etc. they usually have a drawing of a person, front and back, and have to shade in areas of pain, according to thier instructions. tell him/her EVERYTHING that concerns you. thats what he's there for. and the history of it. ask questions like : "What happens if I get into trouble ( lot's of uncontrollable pain, etc) on a weekend, of after hours, how do I reach you ? how do you feel about narcotics for pain meds ? (comfortable, or not), and about deression meds.? will they refer you out if they come up against a challenge they cannot handle ? do they de tests on significant side affects (such as edema in legs, or low O2 sats, and sleep studies for exsessive drowsiness, migraines, stuff like that )?
    thats about all I can come up with for now, but remember, WRITE A LIST OF YOUR CONCERNS, PUT A CHECK-BOX BY EACH ONE, AND CHECK THEM OFF AS HE ADDRESSES IT.
    Good luck, is this your first rheumitologist visit ? if so, your chart cannot be that scarry to him/her.
    ANNE_MARIE
  4. pam_d

    pam_d New Member

    Here's what I did at my visit to my new rheumatologist. I gathered all my records and from them, made a concise, one-page list of SYMPTOMS (prioritizing from most awful & annoying, to least bothersome but still noteworthy), TESTS performed & when (such as MRIs, bloodwork, spinal taps, nerve conduction studies, etc.), and CONDITIONS eliminated & when (such as MS, lyme disease, parkinsin's, etc.--your new doc may want to revisit these issues, but at least he'll know what your previous docs felt were eliminated & when). Keep it all to an easy to quickly read, one page document. Still take your packet of records with you, but don't necessarily expect him/her to look over them at your visit. Most docs (but not all, they all have their own styles, of course) WILL be willing to read your short statement of your medical history up to now. This has worked well for me...good luck, and I hope your new doctor visit goes well after a long wait for it!

    Take care,
    Pam
  5. ANNE_MARIE

    ANNE_MARIE Guest

    sorry, I noticed some typos after I posted that response.... hope you can make sense of it. (they will have YOU shade in areas)and a few little words like that.
    ANNE_MARIE
  6. Fairyeyes

    Fairyeyes New Member

    and thank you to everybody who replied. I too have an appointment with a rheumy coming up, and your info is extremely helpful!
  7. bre_ann

    bre_ann New Member

    If your rheumy is close by, go before and pick up the papers that you need to fill out and get that taken care of BEFORE the appt. They can give you an idea of what sort of things to discuss with the dr. Plus, my packet was several pages and it took some time to fill out. You won't feel rushed and you can fill it out more accurately if you do it ahead of time. Just a suggestion.
    I get so nervouse at dr. appts. that I forget anything and everything I want to discuss so I write questions down and take it with me.
    Brenda

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