Laurel Medical Associates
13635 Baltimore Avenue
Laurel, MD 20707
Laurel Medical Associates at Silver Spring
11203-A Lockwood Drive
Silver Spring, MD 20901
Life Or Death
These two words have always been powerful, when we think about our health. Doctors deal with them both every single day. Their relationship to the doctor-patient relationship is even more surprising. Yeah, you heard me correctly, the doctor and patient relationship. This priceless connection that has been under attack for years, and has been reduced to a mechanical interaction in some cases. This puts a person at risk for terrible health outcomes.
Two recent cases help to illustrate the importance of the doctor-patient relationship. In the first case, a middle-aged man with a long-standing relationship to the office had been feeling well. He had the usual risk factors for a heart attack but did not have any of the usual symptoms. However, with ample time to listen and to perform an exam it became clear that something was different with his usual behavior and usual symptoms. After further diagnostic testing, he was found to have severe blockages in his heart. Fortunately, this was diagnosed early and he is doing well today.
A similar case involved a rather healthy older gentleman who also had some risk factors for heart disease but otherwise felt well. He was found to have an abnormal sound coming from his carotid artery in his neck. This sound is almost always associated with a blockage of the artery that would put him at risk for a major stroke. Further testing would prove that there were severe blockages in both arteries of the neck and the heart. These issues almost certainly would have led to a stroke and or heart attack.
These days when it comes to having a long and healthy life it is imperative to have good health habits and to have an excellent relationship with your doctor. When proper diagnostic testing and medications are used they help to preserve life. Conversely, we cannot forget that when used inappropriately, diagnostic testing and medications can have side effects as well.
These days, we are seeing more and more people deal with significant health issues at younger and younger ages. At the same time, our older population is living longer and having to manage chronic health issues. Consequently, this group is having to consider new medications that help to manage these health issues and further extend life and quality of life as well. Your doctor, one that you trust, should be able to help you.
Now is a good time for you to think about your relationship with your doctor. It also may be a good time to schedule that check up. Don’t forget a balanced diet and exercise.