7 ways to make the most of your doctor’s visit

To get your man to visit the doctor, try  Credit: Colourbox
Prepare for your visit before seeing the doctor.
Credit: Colourbox

You’ll only get as much out of your next doctor’s appointment as what you put into it. Heed this advice from Santa Monica’s Dr. Joseph Pinzone, the CEO and medical director of AMAI and assistant clinical professor of medicine at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine.

1. Prepare: Like any other meeting, preparation is key. You wouldn’t walk into a business meeting unprepared! Strong preparation ensures you’ll get the most of your spent with your doctor. That means compiling a list of your symptoms, outlining your history of present illness and preparing questions for your doctor.

2. Tell a cogent story: Weaving a clear and succinct story about your medical history will go a long way in helping your doctor help you. Think back to when your health problem cropped up. How did it unfold? What were some of the symptoms? Did you self-treat it? What was the result?

3. Ask questions: Don’t leave your doctor’s office until you have all of your questions answered. Write down some of these common questions to ask: What is my diagnosis? What is the history of what I’m facing? What is the prescribed therapy? What is that therapy going to do for me — good and bad? What are the likely outcomes of what I am facing?

4. Ask for an unrushed visit: If you’re wrapping up your doctor’s visit after 5 or 10 minutes, then something went wrong. Often, patients are sensitive about wasting their doctor’s time. Don’t be! Right at the outset, tell your doctor, “It’s important to me that we spend time together today. I’ve done my homework and have a number of things I’d like to discuss with you. An unhurried visit is very important to me.”

5. Bring a care partner: A care partner — such as a spouse, family member, friend, etc. — can be a powerful tool. When you’re engaged in the moment as a patient, it can be challenging to listen. Your care partner can be another set of eyes and ears. That person can take notes and remind you of tidbits you may have missed.

6. Emerge with a plan: Don’t leave your doctor’s office without an action plan. Understand who’s involved, what needs to get done, in what sequence and what timeframe. Make sure you, your care partner and/or your doctor writes down every step of the action plan.

7. Follow up: Be sure your doctor and staff are following through on their end of the plan, whether it’s with a phone call or follow-up visit. Don’t assume that no news is good news. Refer back to your meeting notes and double check that you and your doctor are on track.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Rapper affiliate of Wu-Tang Clan 'cuts off own…

Rapper Andre Johnson, who has performed with New York outfit the Wu-Tang Clan, is in a critical condition after reportedly cutting off his own penis…

National

Cleavage complaint: Disneyland staffer orders curvy mom to…

A curvy mom-of-three says she filed a formal complaint after staff at Disneyland Resort in California ordered her to cover up her boobs. Melissa Behnken,…

International

Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

National

Every dog has his day in court, in…

(Reuters) - Call him juror K-9.A computer glitch is likely to blame for a summons that called a German Shepherd to report for jury duty,…

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Television

'Dexter' star Jennifer Carpenter moves into producing role

The actress who played the title character's sister in "Dexter" is teaming up with producer George Stelzner to adapt Erika Hayasaki's book "The Death Class:…

The Word

Wahlburgers announce North America domination

Tuesday was a huge day for Donnie Wahlberg.

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox beat White Sox…

Red Sox walk 15 times in extra innings win

NBA

Kris Humphries on free agency, future with Celtics:…

Kris Humphries on free agency, future with Celtics: 'I hope to be back'

NBA

Celtics turn attention to NBA Draft, improve lottery…

Celtics turn attention to NBA Draft, improve lottery odds with loss

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.

Tech

5 surprising facts about Google Glass

Your sex life could get more interesting.