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Mar 02 2008

Managing Our Own Expectations as Patients

physiciancommunication.jpgYou may know that I host a weekly health and medical radio talk show called HealthLink on Air.

During the past eight weeks, I have provided a series of tips on how we patients can manage our own expectations. Those tips range from asking questions like, “What happens next?” to finding the right person in the doctor’s office to ask questions of (because the doctor isn’t always the one with the answers!)

These tips are available to anyone who is interested. Here’s a list of topics, with links to each. I hope they are helpful to you:

  1. Learn why your appointments seem so brief. Understand your doctor’s point of view.
  2. Ask questions of other professionals in the office.
  3. Manage your own expectations by continually asking, “What happens next?”
  4. When you are sent for medical tests, ask what the doctor expects, or doesn’t expect to learn.
  5. Make sure you are aware of all possible treatment options, not just the ones your doctor gives you.
  6. Consider getting a second opinion if or when it is warranted.
  7. List pros and cons of your treatment options.
  8. Don’t be intimidated! And learn to ask what difficult words mean.

If there’s something missing, something you don’t understand, or something you wish you had more information about, please let me know — email at: blog (at) EPAdvocate-dot-com.

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