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So many questions, so little time August 1, 2012

Posted by mvarlan in Uncategorized.
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Some patients are not satisfied with the way their doctors address their questions and concerns during a consultation. They often feel that their complaints are not taken seriously during their seemingly-hectic office visit.

As a patient, it is important to remember that hypothalamic hamartomas are a rare and under-diagnosed condition, and many respected physicians will never treat an individual with the one during the entirety of their career.

To get the most out of your consultation, follow these easy steps to help your medical provider give you the best, most accurate information possible:

  1. Prepare for consultations by providing your physician with scientific research about HH. There are many papers on PubMed that cover HH in a highly-scientific manner that your physician will be able to relate to.
  2. Point your physician in the direction of Barrow Neurological Institute. Because hypothalamic hamartomas are so rare, sometimes physicians aren’t aware that there are a handful of specialized centers, like Barrow, that are equipped to treat them.
  3. See if it is possible to complete all or most of your paperwork ahead of time. Dedicate some time to thoroughly answer all medication questions and complete a detailed medical history. Doing so will help your doctor understand the nuances of your symptoms, and it will help you feel less overwhelmed and stressed when you visit your doctor.
  4. Generate a list of questions that you want to ask your doctor. Add to the list throughout the visit if necessary, and write down the answers your doctor gives you so you will remember the details afterward.
  5. Be open minded and patient. Remember that you can always contact your healthcare provider if additional questions and issues arise at a later date. Though you should try to get your questions addressed as thoroughly as possible, don’t feel like you have only one chance to speak with a medical professional.

The sign of a high-quality physician is the willingness to learn about your condition if it is unfamiliar to their practice and help you receive the appropriate treatment you deserve. If you’ve chosen the right doctor, they will go the extra mile to get you the best referral they can, even if it is difficult to do so.

Regards,

Maggie Bobrowitz, RN, MBA
Neuroscience Program Coordinator
Barrow Hypothalamic Hamartoma Center

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