Suggestions for Your Next Appointment

You live with lupus every day, but you may only see your rheumatologist every 3 months or so. With appointments lasting about 15 minutes or less, you need to make sure you are getting everything you can out of your time with your doctors.

Download Doctor Discussion Guide

Below are a few strategies to help ensure that you are communicating all the important things about your health to your doctor.

Strategies to Help You Make the Most of Your Doctor’s Appointments

What?
How?
Do this regularly
What?

Keep track of how you’re feeling. Doing so can give your doctor a clear and accurate picture of what’s been going on with your health.

How?

Download the Patient Diary and use it to track how you are doing.

Do this when you have a moment to talk to a loved one
What?

Get an appointment buddy lined up.

Take a trusted friend or family member with you to appointments. They can act as an advocate, extra ear and note taker.

How?

Ask a trusted friend or family member to be your buddy well in advance of your next medical appointment, so that they can take time off if needed.

Do this a few weeks before your medical appointment
What?

Make sure you have all your medical records with you.

If you’ve visited another doctor or specialist since your last visit to this doctor, make sure you bring copies of any documents or notes with you. This goes for any visits to emergency or urgent care clinics too.

Be ready to answer some questions your doctor may have for you.

How?

Get yourself prepared for things your doctor might ask you, by writing down your answers to the following common questions:

  1. How have you been feeling physically?
  2. How have you been feeling emotionally?
  3. Has anything significant happened that I should know about?
  4. Any new problems that I should be aware of? (note: it’s okay if you are not sure if they are lupus-related).
To Summarize…

Take all your completed tools and records.

Take a list of all your current medications (including vitamins and supplements).

Call your appointment buddy.

Relax! And smile…because you are going to make the most of your time with your doctor.