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    GYNECOLOGY 101: WHAT IS THE ‘INSIDE SCOOP’?

    by Ngozi Osuagwu, MD | September 4th, 2016

    GYNECOLOGY 101: WHAT IS THE ‘INSIDE SCOOP’?

    As part of GYNECOLOGY 101,   I wanted to share some information that is not always readily available. Here is the ‘inside scoop’:

    APPOINTMENTS:

    If you want to be in and out of the office without much waiting, you want to try and be scheduled for the first appointment in the morning or the first appointment after lunch.

    Be honest with the person scheduling the appointment. If you think you will need more time than usual with your provider, tell the scheduler. There are times that the provider needs to get out of the office early, you might not want your appointment at that time, because you do not want to feel rushed.

    If you cannot see your provider or a specialist in a timely fashion, meaning that the next appointment is months away – schedule the appointment at the given time, then make sure that the scheduler is aware that you want to be notified of cancellations. You should also call when the weather is bad to find out if there are cancellations. They give priority to those who have scheduled an appointment already.

    If you cannot make it to your appointment, call the office and reschedule. If you do not call and simply no show, there is a chance that the office will not allow you to schedule any further appointments or charge you for the missed appointment.

     

    RESULTS

    Do not accept the statement that “no news is good news”. You deserve to get your results regardless of whether it is good or bad. You should never leave the office without knowing when and how to expect your results. Most offices have moved to electronic medical records and you can sign up with a special code to get access to your records that includes your results. Take advantage of this opportunity. It will be cheaper than having to come to an appointment to hear that your results are normal.

     

    MEDICAL BILLS

    Medical expenses are the leading cause of bankruptcy. Do not ignore your medical bills. You can always call the facility charging you and arrange for a payment plan. Be honest with them with what you can afford. Some will take as little as $5.00 a month if that is what you can afford. You risk affecting your credit by not dealing with your medical bills.

     

    SECOND OPINION

    Do not be afraid to get a second opinion. If you are not comfortable with the management options that your current provider has suggested, you can get a second opinion. Generally you want the opinion to come from another doctor that is not part the current group.

     

    TEACHING HOSPITALS AND CLINICS

    Do not allow lack of insurance or not being under insured prevent you from seeking care. This is especially true for dental care which is important for overall care. You can always go to a ‘teaching center’, like the dental school or medical school clinics. Unfortunately, ‘teaching centers’ get a bad rap because people feel that they are ‘Guinea pigs’ because there are student doctors. Some of the best care you can get is in a teaching institution because they are up to date with the latest medical techniques. Every medical student or resident physician that sees you has an attending physician (a boss) who is overlooking all that they do. You have the right to ask to speak to the attending physician.

     

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    Secure Your Copy of Letters to My Sisters by Dr. Ngozi Osuagwu.
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    The book discusses common gynecological and women’s health issues in a series of witty and entertaining letters. These letters, all educational, offer suggestions on what approaches to take in tackling the medical problems that typically bring women to an ob/gynecologist. The letters are spiced with art, a poem and quotes. Although its emphasis is on gynecology and women’s health, it touches on some other medical issues that make women visit their doctors.

    The second half of the book briefly discusses the most common gynecological conditions and also provides an overview of sexually transmitted infections. A list of annotated websites dealing with the different topics in the book is provided for the reader who wants to pursue each subject in depth.




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