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Lori Freese - Publisher Dish-Houston, Lifestyle Expert 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 Welcome to Dish-Houston! Houston's FIRST Green online magazine all about Houston. If you are looking for something to do that is local, trying to find the perfect piece of chocolate, the right gift or even dating ideas, that's why we are here! Drop us an email! We love  hearing from you! Blessings and Love!!! Dish-Houston A lot of work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part of living the DISH lifestyle is taking care of yourself! Here on the Health DISH you will find great diet tips, the latest on fun workouts, yoga and running workshops and so much more!


 

Monday
Jun082009

Going to the Doctor

Is there a right way and a wrong way to go to the doctor? Of course there is! When we the patient or as I prefer to call us "medical consumers" go to the doctor we must be as prepared, alert and in control of ourselves as if we were interviewing for that prized corporate position that 100 guys want and only one is going to get.

Sure you don't feel well, naturally you're scared but just as the soldier on the frontline battlefields cannot indulge those feelings, neither can you.

There is only so much time you are going to get once you enter the examining room and you must make every second count.

Let me walk you through the process based on of my own experience.

  • Starting from when you make the appointment, get the name of the person you're speaking with and request that any forms that may need to be filled out be faxed to you in advance so that you won't have to deal with that in the outer office.
  • Also fax them all of your insurance information and credit card info should any advance payment be necessary. Again, the less of this crap you have to deal with at the time of your appointment the better.
  • Make sure you ask if any blood, urine or fecal tests will be taken that may require you to fast for several hours prior to your appointment. Do not expect the person from the doctor's office to be the picture of efficiency. In fact, expect just the opposite and cover as many bases as possible yourself.
  • If there is anyway to NOT go on a Friday or right before a holiday I advise you not to as it just protracts the agony of waiting for test results and/or a prognosis.
  • If there is a procedure, test or surgery that is pending the results of the exam, ask to pre-book in advance of seeing the doctor. The last thing you want to hear is something looks suspicious but you'll have to wait two weeks to get an opening for that MRI or CT scan, not to mention operating room. These things can always be cancelled but if they're booked, you're plain out of luck.
  • If you are getting a second opinion, or being referred to a specialist, get involved in the transport of your previous test results. Imaging tests come on disc, or film or are digitized and I recommend you pick them up from one place and hand deliver them to the other. The less middle men involved the less opportunity for screw ups. Also have copies of all lab work results and doctor evaluations as well.
  • Prepare a list of questions that you or your loved ones want the doctor to answer. Don't expect to remember everything becauseyou won't, so start your medical "grocery" list immediately and add to it as you think of the questions.
  • Always go to the doctor with at least one other person whom you consider to be strong, confident and in control. Your head will reel with all the information mixed with emotions that this sick person is YOU they are talking about . This person will be your eyes, your ears, your significant other. Don't choose a person for whom you will need to be strong or have to calm down. This experience must be about you and only you. Bring them right into the examining room and never let them leave your side. Give them the responsibility of writing down notes, asking how to spell words and medical terms with which you are unfamiliar. Having a solid caring presence on your behalf to share the load lightens the burden of having to navigate through ominous un-chartered waters by yourself. Heed my warning, don't try to go it alone even if you're sure you can. Every soldier needs a "buddy".
  • Don'tomit any symptoms you may be feeling even if you're positive that it has nothing to do with the larger health issue at hand. A good diagnostician needs to see the overall picture before making an informed diagnosis.
  • Make certain that you discuss all options with your doctor and don't allow yourself to feel rushed. As a medical consumer you are entitled receive the physician's undivided attention.
  • Ask yourself if what you are being told makes sense. Don't underestimate your instincts.
  • Look up everything on the internet to better evaluate the information from the doctor.
  • Whenever going for a second opinion, and I believe this is an absolute must, go outside of your doctor's hospital to get a totally objective opinion . (BTW the idea of insulting or upsetting your primary physician is B.S. Any worthwhile doctor will expect it and regardless, it's your body, your health, your life so do it!
  • If you are diagnosed with cancer, your research must be extremely diligent. The internet will point you towards the medical leaders in the field of your particular disease. The same names will come up again and again in research studies and medical reports. These are the doctors you should be talking to. Call any and every important and powerful person you know or know someone who knows. We are all six degrees of separation from someone who can help you get through to a hard to get to specialist.
  • If radiation and/or chemo-therapy is recommended, realize that there is no standard for these treatments and application changes from state to state, city to city and yes even hospital to hospital. So make an informed decision based off of many things but mostly what you "feel" is the right approach for you. The hospital where your surgeon is associated, may not necessarily be where you do your post-op treatment. I had my cancer surgery at Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles, but had I decided to do the radiation, I was going to fly down to MD Anderson in Houston. This decision was based onwhere the most state of the art equipment for the particular form of radiation I would have needed was, as well as each hospitals policy for the frequency and strength of treatment.
    Most important, plan your play and then play your plan. Be Well.

Fran Drescher
Cancer survivor, activist and New York Times bestselling author of the book, Cancer Schmancer.

For More information, please CLICK HERE  to visit the Cancer Schmancer website to see how you can help!

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