Advice for Talking to Your Doctor

My MSAA Community - Strategies for Talking to Your DoctorRecently, we asked the members of our online community, My MSAA Community, what their strategies are for talking to their doctors.  Here is some of the advice and experiences the members shared:

“If there is something that I really want to express to my doctor I always keep a journal, but add to it printouts of my research. Last fall, I was interested in adding a non FDA medication called Low Dose Naltrexone, LDN for short. I did my research, even found some research that my own doctor had participated in. I went to my appointment fully prepared and left with my prescription and I believe a little more respect from my doctor.”

“My PC she is a good doctor but when I was having an issue with my feet swelling really bad I figured it out before she did. And she never got back to me. I know that is only one thing but sometimes I feel like she has too many things on her plate. Then all of a sudden I have an issue and she calls me right back with the answer. But I need to realize that she doesn’t deal with MS patients all the time.”

“I have no issues talking to any of my doctors and I would change MDs if I did. I have had issues with falling through the cracks of the healthcare system, but that’s hard to pin on one person or one office. I just keep calling or emailing until what was supposed to happen, happens. Sometimes I get a number or ask for the next step so I know who to call (or email) if/when the ball does get dropped. Or so that I can just know what’s next.”

“I have to say, the hardest part was getting them ALL on the same page as I was! I have 3 doctors: Neurologist, PCP, and my shrink. They all have their own specialties, so I keep them there! When I go see my neurologist, I write my 3 BIG questions down 1st! And write down my answers! So I have to look back on! I also find that if I can make him laugh, he will be more open with me! And not so doctor-ish!”

“I write down my main questions in Notes on my phone and type the answers on my phone as I’m talking to my doctor. I let the doctor know that I’m taking notes on my phone, not texting. The benefit is I can look back at my notes during my next appointment. I just keep adding to the notes with each appointment.”

Find more strategies and support on our free online peer-to-peer forum, My MSAA Community. The community is a safe space for you to post questions, get answers, and connect with more than 3,000 members!  If you haven’t done so already, check out My MSAA Community today.

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As a national nonprofit organization, the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America is a leading resource for the entire MS community, improving lives today through vital services and support. MSAA provides free programs and services, such as: a toll-free Helpline; award-winning publications including a magazine, The Motivator; website featuring educational videos and research updates; S.E.A.R.C.H.™ program to assist the MS community with learning about different treatment choices; a mobile phone app, My MS Manager™; a resource database, My MS Resource Locator; equipment distribution ranging from grab bars to wheelchairs; cooling accessories for heat-sensitive individuals; educational events and activities; MRI funding and insurance advocacy; and more. For additional information, please visit http://www.mymsaa.org or call (800) 532-7667.

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