Asthma patients help hints free management guidelines
Asthma patients are increasing now that you know what is going to happen to you during your first visit to the doctor, let me provide a list of guidelines ensure a smoother, more productive session. The doctor is engaged in problem solving and needs all the pieces of the puzzles to be in the best position to “solve” the problem. Through yes, of experience with all kinds of patients, I have found the following to be helpful:
- Plan the day. Eliminate any possible pressuring factor I’ve had asthma patients who bring their nine-month-old and spend more time worrying about the baby, rather to listening and cooperating with me. Get a babysit other patients schedule other appointments (social business) after the one with me and are preoccupied with time. One patient left her husband double-parked outs and was unable to concentrate since she was anticipation what his reaction might be if our visit took a long time First visits take quite a while. Allow time and plan appropriately.
- Present the true you. Some of asthma patients exaggerate the symptoms, while others minimize their symptoms. But tendencies are counterproductive. Accuracy is vital. If you are already taking some medications, don’t under medicate.(so that your symptoms become so full-blown as to create an emergency situation) or over medicate (so that your symptoms are masked or eliminated). Present the facts as is!
- Asthma patients know your history. Your history should be familiar to you. Try to organize it. It is best, I have learned, to present it in chronological order. If you have been ill for a long time, perhaps it is best to briefly summarize “ancient” history and stress “recent” history. Salience is the key; highlight the important features. It is especially helpful if you bring reports from previous consultations. Any previous X rays are very helpful too. There is no such thing as too much information.
- Should asthma patients Know your medications. If you are presently taking medications, know their names and the dosages you are taking. If necessary; call your pharmacist. It always surprises me that so many asthma patients and people are unaware of what they are swallowing. Do not describe a small, round, chartreuse pill. Find out the name!
- Can asthma patients speak clearly and precisely? I am aware of the fact that many patients are anxious during our first visit. This is understandable. The purpose of this chapter is to lessen these anxieties because they can create an obstacle that works against the success of this information-exchanging meeting. If you can, speak to the point and avoid rambling. Hard as I try, it is often impossible to gain an overview when one of my new patients goes on and on endlessly, with no particular direction discernible. Avoid vague descriptions. The patient who comes with a written list of facts and/or questions, is usually a joy.
- Be straightforward and honest. I can only work with the information that is provided. There are times when I know that the asthma patients are not telling me the “whole” story. This is a waste of time and furthermore, it will make it difficult for us to create a working relationship based on mutual respect. Be direct. After taking countless case histories, there is almost nothing that will surprise me. If it is relevant, be specific and supply the facts. It is not particularly rewarding to try to help someone who is not being helpful.
- Asthma patients be involved. Too many patients convey the feeling that their responsibility in their own care has ended when they come to see me. This is not so. Aggressive involvement in your own treatment is crucial. Patients who sit passively are doing themselves (and me) a disservice. It is human nature to want to be met halfway in any mutual endeavor and asthma care is a mutual endeavor. Ask questions. Seems clarification. Be responsive and involved!
- Don’t expect too much. Be patient and do not expect an instant cause/cure statement. Too many patients appear disappointed, even angry, when I tell them that some test need to be done. Unless I am as certain as possible about the nature of the patient’s illness, I am ill-equipped to prescribe treatment. Don’t set yourself up for disappointment.
- Asthma patients demonstrate a commitment. The asthma patients who clearly convey to me their commitment to the diagnostic and treatment processes are the most satisfying and, mos often, the most successful. Often my recommendations may be quite demanding. I might insist that a patient convince their spouse to stop smoking. I might stipulate that the family cat be removed from the asthma patients environment. I might have to recommend a change in jobs or jabs setting. Sometimes the patient agrees, but I know, for example, that the cat is still at home. Those patients who rise to the occasion and meet the challenge are demonstrating the commitment needed in asthma care. You must wait, experiment, report successes and failures and monitor your body’s reactions. I strongly feel that this commitment is a prerequisite for success. When it is demonstrated during the first visit, I know that the patient and I will work well together.
Asthma Patients Bill of Rights
In presenting a total view of the first visit, it is necessary to add a section on “consumer’s rights,” in this case, the rights of the patient. As I hope that my new patients will be able demonstrate honesty, clarity, involvement, and a sense of commitment, the patient has expectations that must also be met in order to make the first visit (and subsequent visits) successful and productive. The patient has the right to expect me, or and colleague to be :-
- A good listener, able to integrate the information provided without placing the patient in preconceived categories.
- Patient, allowing the asthmatic time to present the information in his style, at his own pace, without the impression that the doctor is in a rush.
- Responsive to his questions about symptoms.
- Easily understandable, using language that is appropriate for him.
- Considerate of his feelings, what he has gone through, and what was done to him.
- Competent and knowledgeable, demonstrating familiarity with his symptoms and the ramifications and possible treatment alternatives available to him.
- Operating in facilities that are up-to-date, clean, and run by a staff that is polite, considerate, efficient, and helpful.
- Able to offer a “game plan” with short- and long-range goals, thus providing him with stopgap measures if he is severely symptomatic as well as an idea of the overall treatment program planned for him.
- Reachable and flexible, demonstrating an open-minded willingness to maintain a relationship based on mutual respect, credibility, and cooperation.
Asthma patients should do the first visit sets the stage for an effective asthma treatment program. If the first visit goes smoothly, with a great deal of information provided and reflected upon, and with the initiation of a working relationship between doctor and asthma patient, a significant first step is taken. After a typical first visit, I have been Provided with the raw data upon which to base a plan for reducing or eliminating the asthma symptoms in my patient. There are several alternatives available to me. Some patients will have alter their diet, or their environment. Some will best be treated with medications. Finally, some patients may have to Avoid certain substances, and may be good candidates for allergy !shots (immunotherapy). Most will have to monitor a combination of these factors.
Whichever route I take, I will continue to rely upon my asthma patients to provide the data upon which to judge the success or failure of our treatment choices. The patient and I will continue b exchange information. Master the skill of providing such information, for it will be continuously used.
An excellent, free service, which is available through the National Jewish Hospital/National Asthma Center in Denver Colorado is a Lung-Line. A staff of trained registered nurses answer your general questions about asthma, allergy and lung diseases. They can provide you with names of hospitals and specialists in your area as well as the titles of helpful books and other literature. Their knowledge ranges from information about filtering systems to facts about special diets. Although the service is not intended to answer specific questions about your medication on your unique situation, there is a physician who will get back to you if the phone staff thinks it would be appropriate. The Lung-Line is open from Mon.-Fri., 8:30 AM-5:00 PM. Calls received after hours will be returned as soon as possible. The toll free telephone number for all areas outside of Colorado is 800-2224 LUNG. For residents of Colorado the number is 303-398-1477.