How to effectively describe your condition and answer your doctor’s questions

Internet consultation is the new fashion, and to some extent it is convenient for patients who are far away from their home country. We all know that a visit to a doctor requires looking, touching, listening, and then adding the necessary tests for the doctor to fully understand the condition. However, online consultation relies on the patient’s own description of the condition and the results of auxiliary tests. If the patient’s description is not specific, the doctor will not be able to answer the questions and may delay the condition. So how should we effectively describe our condition to the doctor? First, the chief complaint: This refers to the main symptom and duration that prompted the patient to come in for a consultation. For example, “headache for 4 hours”, “dizziness for 1 month” or “insomnia for 2 years”, etc. These are the main problems that you most want the doctor to help you with. When your doctor asks you “how long have you had a headache”, don’t just say “for a long time”, “not long” or “for a while”. “Instead of being vague and answering inaccurately, tell the doctor exactly how long the symptoms have been present: for example, how many years, months or days. Plus the present medical history and ancillary tests: The present medical history refers to the details of the occurrence, evolution, and treatment of the patient’s current disease. Patients need to master the following necessary skills when describing: 1. chronologically, describe the progress of the disease and accompanying symptoms. For example: I had a sudden headache starting at 10 o’clock this morning, accompanied by nausea and jet-like vomiting at 1 o’clock in the afternoon. Or: Sudden dizziness, weakness on the right side of the body, etc. 2. Describe the symptoms clearly. For example, when describing a headache, make it clear how long the pain has lasted, what kind of pain it is, the nature and characteristics of the pain, whether it is constant or intermittent or occasional, when the pain is light and when it is heavy, and so on. For example: persistent severe pain like cutting for 4 hours, no pain during the day, pain at night or light pain during the day, heavy pain at night, etc. 3.Detail what kind of medicine you have taken, the name of the medicine and the amount of medicine, how long you have taken each kind of medicine, and focus on whether these medicines have any effect on the main symptoms, such as headache, e.g.: after taking 1 tablet of painkiller, the headache did not improve significantly. Or: The pain was relieved after half an hour of taking the pain relief tablet, but started to hurt again after 2 hours. Taking taking venlafaxine for 1 week has no significant effect on pain, and taking sertraline for 2 days has no significant improvement on insomnia. 4.What tests have been done: upload photos of the films and reports of the tests done in other hospitals (brain CT or brain MRI, etc.) and the laboratory results. In addition, since the specialization is becoming more and more obvious and subdivided, as the saying goes, “A line of work is like a mountain,” if the doctor answers, “Sorry, this is beyond my expertise,” there is no need to continue to ask questions.

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