By having the following things with me, I know I can maximize my interaction with my doctor. We are a team; I want to make sure I play my role!
Here are the top things I have with me in order to be an effective teammate:
Appointments can be overwhelming. By having a game plan, I ensure that I don’t clam up or forget my purpose. I brainstorm questions in advance and communicate openly and honestly with the doctor.
2. Medical History
Many people with HAE have extensive medical histories, including me! Additionally, I make sure I have as much information as I can—from past test results to lists of my current medications.
3. Journal of Symptoms
Knowing my symptoms and being able to articulate them is critical. My doctor cannot help me if I do not give him the full picture. Documenting symptoms in a journal when they strike can be an invaluable tool.
I have done a lot of research into my HAE, and if I have any ideas about what may be causing a certain symptom, I bring them up with my doctor.
5. Family Member or Friend
My mother has always encouraged me to speak up with my doctors, and if she could, I know my mom would still accompany me to all my appointments! Doctor’s appointments can be stressful. Having two sets of ears, whether those ears belong to family or friends, helps me keep track of the extensive information being shared.
6. Paper and Pen
When I do have to attend my appointment solo, I bring something to take notes on. Paper and pen will always do the trick, but computer tablets work, as well.
I know my body, and I want my body to have my doctor-directed treatment! So I’m not afraid to hold my head high and speak with confidence!
Being prepared helps me to be confident and proactive!
What are the things you carry to your doctor’s appointments? Leave a comment!