Have you ever felt nervous or awkward while talking to your doctor? We know those drafty hospital gowns make everyone feel uncomfortable, but at Fort Lauderdale Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, we believe discussing your health should never make you feel the same. All too often, patients are afraid to open up and get involved in the diagnosis and treatment process because they believe the doctor is “in charge.” This causes an imbalance between doctor and patient, when the two should really be working together as partners.
Ultimately, establishing a good doctor-patient relationship with your South Florida orthopedic surgeon is crucial to any treatment’s success. Here are four ways you can do this as a patient and take an active role in your own health.
1. Speak up. At Fort Lauderdale Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, we promise to communicate clearly, take time to listen to you, and be accessible. In return, we encourage all patients to ask questions, give input and relay concerns – even when it’s embarrassing.
2. Be honest. You need to provide the information your physician needs honestly, without minimizing or exaggerating problems. Research by the American Society of Internal Medicine concluded that 70% of correct diagnoses depend solely on what patients tell their doctor!
3. Ask questions. Your appointment is the time reserved for your physician to give you his complete attention. Don’t come over your lunch hour and rush through it. Instead, take the time to ask about those things you need clarified or don’t understand. If you think you may forget, make a list of things you want to cover and bring it with you.
4. Follow up. Developing a great patient/physician relationship doesn’t happen in one visit. We need to see you repeatedly to prepare for treatment, judge results, and provide you with additional guidance and preventive tips for the improvement of your health.
Establishing an easy and trusted relationship with your physician is one of the first steps to get your life back, no matter the health issue. To learn more about how our leading orthopaedic specialists can help improve your quality of life, call Fort Lauderdale Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine today at (954) 400-5544. Our entire team is committed to providing top-quality orthopaedic care that is compassionate, understanding and respectful.