After Your Visit Tips
Just because your visit has ended, doesn’t mean your IBD should be neglected. Here are six questions to ask yourself after your visit with your IBD doctor.
1. Are you taking your medications?
If you are not taking your medications, why aren’t you? Is there a side effect that is bothering you? Do you forget to take them? Are you not sure how to take them? Ask yourself these questions. If you need help with your mediations, get in touch. We can help you figure it out and make adjustments.
2. Do you know when you should have your lab values checked?
Periodic checks are important for many IBD medications. Do you know when and where to get the tests done? Are you sure that the lab or imaging service you are using reports results to your doctor? If it doesn’t, have you made arrangements so they can?
3. Did you receive your test results?
If you have had test, did you or your doctor receive the results? Not every result is going to be sent to the patient, but many are. Especially if you are using a facility that is outside your doctor’s network, you may want to check to see if your doctor has received the results.
4. Do you know what the test results mean?
You don’t have to become an expert (although many IBD patients do!). But you should become familiar with lab values and what they mean. Control is an issue with any disease but especially with IBD. The more you know about your IBD and how it is monitored, the more in control you will feel.
5. Do you need to schedule an infusion or injection?
The dosing schedules for the anti-TNF medications (Remicade, Humira, Cimzia) are complicated. They are also complicated for Tysabri and Stelera. Look ahead. Do you know when you need to get your next infusion or injection?
6. Are you working on lifestyle changes?
Eating better. Exercising more. Sleeping better. They all can help you feel better and help you manage your IBD. Don’t try to make too many changes at once. People are usually more successfully with lifestyle changes if they focus on one or two things at a time.