Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: July 23, 2020
If you have spine pain, the last thing you want is to feel like you aren’t any better off after a visit to the doctor’s office. You shouldn’t expect the doctor to be able to wave a magic wand and fix your back problem at this first appointment, but at the same time, you want to walk out of that office with a better understanding of your issue and a plan for moving forward with treatment. But that doesn’t happen by accident.
If you want to have a productive first appointment with your spine specialist, you’ll want to keep some of the following tips in mind.
Tips for Having A Productive Doctor’s Appointment
If you want to walk out of your appointment feeling accomplished, you’ll want to:
- Find A Specialist – Your general practitioner may have a decent amount of knowledge about the spine, but to get the most out of your first visit, you may want to choose a doctor who specializes in the spine, like Dr. Sinicropi.
- Document Your Symptoms – You may think you have a good grip on your symptoms, but it’s easier to remember if you have a point of reference. A symptom journal can help you keep track of your good and bad days and allow the doctor to get a better sense of the totality of your injuries.
- Come With Questions – Odds are you have a few questions about your pain and how it’s affecting your daily life, so come prepared to ask these questions. If you forget to ask a question during your appointment, just reach back out with a phone call!
- Be Honest – We’re not here to judge you for how you injured your spine or how you answer questions about your exercise, diet or smoking habits. We need you to be honest with us if we’re going to be able to make the most informed decisions about your care, so please, be honest with your doctor and their staff during the appointment.
- Book An Early Appointment – We always ensure we give each patient the attention they deserve, but you may feel less rushed if you book an appointment in the morning. Mornings tend to stay on schedule a little better than the afternoon, and while we’ll never rush you out of an appointment, you may find it easier to get all your questions answered at an earlier appointment.
- Clear Up Confusion – If you’re confused or unsure about anything your doctor is saying, bring it up to your physician before you leave the appointment. We want you to have a clear understanding of your condition and what we expect from you going forward, and that’s harder to accomplish if you’re confused about any aspect of your care.
- Know The Warning Signs Of A Bigger Problem – Odds are you’ll get a diagnosis at this first appointment, and once you do, it’s important that you know the signs of a bigger problem. For example, you may want to ask your doctor about the signs of an infection, what symptoms suggest the issue is getting worse, or what signs warrant a call back to the office.
- Listen – Finally, we know that some medical terminology can be confusing and overwhelming, but we try to explain everything as easily as possible. We just need you to listen and heed our advice, because if you don’t follow through with our treatment suggestions, you’re going to struggle to find relief.
For more tips on having a productive first meeting with a specialist, or to book your first appointment with Dr. Sinicropi, reach out to his clinic today.