Every doctor wants to know what medications you’re taking. For an antibiotic that you’ve only taken for two weeks, take the bottle with you to your appointment. When your life and well-being revolve around whether or not you remember to take a cupboard full of prescriptions, you need to know what you’re taking, when you’re taking it, how much you’re taking, and why.
For medicine used to treat a chronic condition, have an accurately typed list. Spell it correctly. There is no such thing as embrell or methyltrexate; it’s eNbrel and methOtrexate. If you can’t copy the med name right, the doctor is going to wonder what else you’re getting wrong. Are you taking as prescribed it if you don’t know what it is?
Life is not a spelling test – you’re allowed to copy from the pharmacy’s literature. Do whatever it takes to get the name of your meds right. Include the dosage. Here’s what I have typed-out for my doctor’s appointments:
|Prescription||Azulfidine (Sulfasalazine)||DMARD||1000 mg||bid||RA|
|Plaquenil (Hydroxychloroquine)||DMARD||200 mg||bid||RA|
|Feldene (Piroxicam)||NSAID||20 mg||qd||RA|
|Solaraze Topical Gel (100g tube) (diclofenac 3%)||NSAID||bid||RA|
|Calan SR (Verapamil ER)||CCB||300 mg||qd||Migraines/Raynauds|
|Maxalt (Rizatriptan Benzoate)||Triptan||10 mg||prn||Migraines|
|OTC||Prilosec (omeprazole)||20 mg||daily|
|Multi-Vitamin, B, C, E, Cal/Mag/Zinc…|
|Tylenol (acetaminophen)||1000 mg||qid prn|
The nurses at my PCP’s office thank me profusely for having a typed list — I’ve considered putting it on a sticky-label so it can just be affixed to my chart, but haven’t gone to that extreme. I include both brand and generic names because, although the doctor knows these meds, his help doesn’t always, and one time something got left off because a nurse thought Solaraze=Sulfasalazine.
The more accurately we can provide information, the less chance there is for mistakes to be made.