The rheumatologist I had at this time last year was horrible. He didn't tell me that he thought I might have fibromyalgia nor did he try to treat me for it at all. He didn't listen to the side effects I was having with MTX or with Humira and totally just didn't listen to me in general - I have about 20 mistakes in my medical record that I have had to clear up with my new docs due to his inattention... like that I had no pain for a decade - um, WHAT?
I also have had issues with my primary care twice now with medications not being prescribed correctly or being prescribed something I'm allergic to. Hello!
There is so much pain that we patients go through. The last thing we need is to go through medication issues or deal with inattention that causes us problems. So here are some things that our docs can do to fix these problems!
- Listen! Please! We listen to you and try medications we aren't sure about and other treatments we have doubts about because you say and think that they may be beneficial. The least you can do is treat us the same.
- Contact us back! A lot of us have problems even getting up the courage to call when we have an issue because somehow we feel like we failed a medication or a taper or a treatment. We have probably waited too long in any case to get your input on something and so you just need to remember that!
- Figure out who we are. One of the reasons why I love my rheumy office is that I feel like every time I go, my NP really listens and asks questions that aren't just health related. She pays attention and knows how outside stress affects my health. She also celebrates my happy things with me too :) At my appt with her a few weeks ago, she finally learned about me getting engaged and she was incredibly ecstatic - and went so far as to write it down including our picked date. I'm rambling maybe? The point is, when you know the things we do and love you will know what treatments will work the best and what things might negatively affect our health the most.
- This probably goes with the last point, but be our friends. It is much easier to share problems with someone you feel really cares about you and not just treating an illness because it is their job than it is to share with a cold stranger.
So docs, nurses, and future docs take note! We see you so much you're practically family anyway, so might as well get used to it and listen like it :)