Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

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dm200
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Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by dm200 »

Without going into the medical details, I recently had tests (CT scan for something else) that seemed to indicate problems in my left kidney - and might have indicated more tests. I recalled that about 15 years ago (different medical provider) I had CT scans that indicated something in my left kidney - that (at the time) were believed to be not harmful. Fortunately, I was able to track down the physician and then the radiology place - and, at no charge, get the radiologist's reports on the two CT scans.

As I strongly believed, these scan reports by a radiologist 15 years ago convinced the current relevant specialist that nothing more needs to be done in that regard. While I (and my wife) keep track of some medical history, I admit that, in this case, I relied 100% on my memory to track it down.

Moral of the story - write down (and share with family) medical history. It could:
1. Save your life
2. Save you money
3. Reduce risks of more tests, scans, probes, investagive surgery.
Rotarman
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by Rotarman »

Fantastic advice. Additionally you can often receive a disc containing your CT scan if you ask shortly after getting the scan. Then they can download them into your medical record wherever you go. Another especially good record to keep somewhere is a chest xray if you ever get one - this one might save you a biopsy!
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dm200
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by dm200 »

Rotarman wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:11 pm Fantastic advice. Additionally you can often receive a disc containing your CT scan if you ask shortly after getting the scan. Then they can download them into your medical record wherever you go. Another especially good record to keep somewhere is a chest xray if you ever get one - this one might save you a biopsy!
yes - turns out the image(s) - were no longer available, but the report of the radiologist was sufficient. I (and DW) have been on the same plan for the last 7 years and those records are all centrally located and accessible.
staythecourse
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by staythecourse »

I will say this is EXCELLENT advice. My advice to everyone is start a medical folder. Then every result and note from the doc you just throw into the folder. Honestly, this is going to be much less of an issue going forward as everything is stored electronic and that storage capacity is nearly forever.

This is more of a reason to have all your care at the same instituition to keep the access available for everyone in the same network no matter which specialist you are seeing. Of course, the negative is that you are limiting yourself to choices that may not be the best for you. Everything is a tradeoff.

Good luck.

p.s. I've told patients the amazing thing about electronic records will be in 100 years folks will be able to go over every visit and lab/ imaging that was done on their ancestors. OF course, that will have HUGE implications in the world of insurance coverage and risk assessment.
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dm200
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by dm200 »

staythecourse wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:38 pm I will say this is EXCELLENT advice. My advice to everyone is start a medical folder. Then every result and note from the doc you just throw into the folder. Honestly, this is going to be much less of an issue going forward as everything is stored electronic and that storage capacity is nearly forever.
This is more of a reason to have all your care at the same instituition to keep the access available for everyone in the same network no matter which specialist you are seeing. Of course, the negative is that you are limiting yourself to choices that may not be the best for you. Everything is a tradeoff.
Good luck.
p.s. I've told patients the amazing thing about electronic records will be in 100 years folks will be able to go over every visit and lab/ imaging that was done on their ancestors. OF course, that will have HUGE implications in the world of insurance coverage and risk assessment.
With my experience (Kaiser for 7 years in most recent period with Kaiser) having so much centralized is great. I no longer have to wait for paper files to be shipped to a specialist for an appointment. All my doctors immediately see almost all tests. There are even automated or semi-automated popups or warnings to my doctors about this or that. On the other hand, I still have to be aware of my history since the doctors are bombarded with screen after screen of information and can sometimes jump to the wrong conclusion.

People tell me I am "unusual" or a little "weird" that I scrutinize every test, ask what every test might mean, and ask why every proposed test is justified. I also know (either from observation or I ask) EXACTLY what category everyone who I deal with is: RN (and whether has BS or not), LPN, Nurse practioner, clinical assistant, MD, PA, DO, OD, etc. For MDs abd DOs, I also know (or find out) what specialty they have or (for primary care) if they are Internal medicine or Family Practice. [My wife tells me I am being silly]
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by mouses »

I scan in copies of all test reports and get images if I can.
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by BolderBoy »

My dad was in the USArmy and I was a brat. One of the things mom had to do before we left each post for the last time was to stop by the hospital and pick up our medical records - all of them. When we got to the new post one of the first stops was the new hospital. Clever idea at the time.
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by radiowave »

dm200 wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:01 pm . . .

People tell me I am "unusual" or a little "weird" that I scrutinize every test, ask what every test might mean, and ask why every proposed test is justified. I also know (either from observation or I ask) EXACTLY what category everyone who I deal with is: RN (and whether has BS or not), LPN, Nurse practioner, clinical assistant, MD, PA, DO, OD, etc. For MDs abd DOs, I also know (or find out) what specialty they have or (for primary care) if they are Internal medicine or Family Practice. [My wife tells me I am being silly]
Not unusual at all, good practice - you are being proactive with your care and providers.

Just out of curiosity, can you tell any difference between a BSN nurse or not (full disclosure, I'm a RN).

One other thing to add to this thread is to keep good records of any and all medications (name), dates started/stopped, MD (other provider) who prescribed, dose, route, times taken (e.g. at bedtime), and indication if possible (e.g. as needed for pain). This information is very valuable when visiting new providers, admissions to hospitals, etc. Even existing providers may not be aware of medications prescribed outside their practice.
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dm200
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by dm200 »

radiowave wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:34 pm
dm200 wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:01 pm . . .
People tell me I am "unusual" or a little "weird" that I scrutinize every test, ask what every test might mean, and ask why every proposed test is justified. I also know (either from observation or I ask) EXACTLY what category everyone who I deal with is: RN (and whether has BS or not), LPN, Nurse practioner, clinical assistant, MD, PA, DO, OD, etc. For MDs abd DOs, I also know (or find out) what specialty they have or (for primary care) if they are Internal medicine or Family Practice. [My wife tells me I am being silly]
Not unusual at all, good practice - you are being proactive with your care and providers.
Just out of curiosity, can you tell any difference between a BSN nurse or not (full disclosure, I'm a RN).
One other thing to add to this thread is to keep good records of any and all medications (name), dates started/stopped, MD (other provider) who prescribed, dose, route, times taken (e.g. at bedtime), and indication if possible (e.g. as needed for pain). This information is very valuable when visiting new providers, admissions to hospitals, etc. Even existing providers may not be aware of medications prescribed outside their practice.
Not sure. My mother was an RN from back when most RNs were graduates of 3 year hospital nursing schools and many of my high school classmates became RNs at sych schools. Very different today, in my opinion, since the nursing schools have gone away and nurses (RNs) not having a degree get there in a very different way.
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by btenny »

My wife and I both keep folders of our med records and try to understand the details in them. Both of us have things in our history that would cause lots of extra testing and need further"evaluation" if we did not tell each new provider NO that is normal for me. Now that I am older I bet a huge percentage of the population has some issue that is flagged but normal for them....

This issue makes my wife always go to the exact same OBGYN and same place for her annual exams to make sure all the things they see are not misinterpreted. Likewise I have things that show on xrays and ct scans that everyone wants to discuss. So I am careful who I let do what....
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by camden »

As a Diagnostic Radiologist, I can echo that the OP offers excellent advice here. It is extremely common to encounter findings on imaging studies (especially CT) which, while abnormal, have a low (but not zero) probability of significant disease. If an older study is available for comparison which demonstrates that the same finding has been present previously and is stable over time, it can be ignored. If not, follow up exams to document such stability may be necessary. If you receive all of your imaging at one medical center, having your own imaging "file" will not be necessary, but if not (or if you are planning to move), getting copies of your most recent exams is a really good idea which can save you trouble in the future.
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by dm200 »

camden wrote: Sat Feb 17, 2018 11:21 am As a Diagnostic Radiologist, I can echo that the OP offers excellent advice here. It is extremely common to encounter findings on imaging studies (especially CT) which, while abnormal, have a low (but not zero) probability of significant disease. If an older study is available for comparison which demonstrates that the same finding has been present previously and is stable over time, it can be ignored. If not, follow up exams to document such stability may be necessary. If you receive all of your imaging at one medical center, having your own imaging "file" will not be necessary, but if not (or if you are planning to move), getting copies of your most recent exams is a really good idea which can save you trouble in the future.
As a patient, it seems that many Physicians are depending more on scans, tests, images, etc. These scans are becoming more and more precise in seeing more and more smaller "things" as well. My Primary Care Physician tells me that, in her experience, younger physicians tend to order more of such scans (such as CT).
tryterry
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Re: Medical records - saved me money, time, trouble and XRay exposure :)

Post by tryterry »

Thanks. You can also save it in a cloud storage account for 24/7 access
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