At the Doctor
When managing a chronic condition like primary immunodeficiency (PI), developing a good relationship with your healthcare team is important. Making sure you're having effective discussions helps you and it helps your doctor. Learn some tips on effective communication below.
Communicating With Your HCP
Although your healthcare provider has your best interests in mind, he or she cannot get the full picture of your health without an essential component: you. You are the only one who knows how you feel, and unless you tell your doctor what you are experiencing, he or she may not be able to help.
Don't automatically assume that anything you are experiencing is normal without first finding out from your doctor.
How to Communicate
Does your doctor prefer communicating over the phone? Through email? With in-person appointments? Plan with your physician on a communication strategy that works for both of you, for normal communications and for emergencies.
What to Talk About
Things to tell your doctor include:
- Infections: What infections have you experienced and how did you treat them? Did the treatment work? Make sure to include specific medication names, dosages and frequencies.
- Ig Infusion experience: Tell your doctor how your infusions are going. Are you experiencing any side effects? Are you happy with how your treatment is going?
- Other issues: If you are experiencing any other health issues, even if they don't seem to be related, make sure to tell your doctor.
Improving your conversations with your doctor starts with you. It may be helpful to keep an ongoing list of questions to ask at your next appointment, and it is always a good idea to keep track of what happens with your health between appointments.
Tracking and Assessing Your Health
In order to get a full picture of your health, your doctor also needs to know everything that has been happening in between appointments. Even if an infection or complication has been resolved by the time of your appointment, you will still want to tell your doctor about it.
Get in the habit of tracking all the details about your health. Record your infusions, including dosage and frequency, and write down all symptoms and improvements. You will also want to write down specifics about any infections you may have experienced and treatments you took for them. Be
Visit our Managing My Treatment section for even more information and resources about how to stay in control of your health.
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