From Sports to Healthcare to Slapstick

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*  Take Me Out To The Ballgame

There is a reason February was made the shortest month of the year. This is to minimize the amount of dull boring time between the end of the football season (The Super Bowl) and the start of the baseball season in late March or early April.

* A Bad Sign for Seniors

You know you are a classic seasoned senior citizen when every time you go to the pharmacy you can greet the pharmacist and all the staff by their names – and vice versa.

* Lost in Translation –Your Health

Now to some serious issues related to your healthcare. I have written on many medical issues previously but certain reminders are worthwhile. Whether you are a fan of ObamaCare or not there are a few things you can do to make your office or clinic visits more productive.

As you know, physicians are under great stress from the government, employers and insurance companies to see more patients for a shorter time. Therefore doing a little homework will make your time with the physician more efficient and productive.

1. Make a list of all current medications, dosages, and how often you take them. Often what ails you may be related to too many medications, wrong medications and combinations of medications that have serious interactions. This is a frequent diagnostic problem because the average senior takes 7-12 medications.

2. Prepare a concise interval history to bring your physician up to date on how you are feeling. Don’t ramble or get off on tangents. Value your time with the doctor.

3. Also write down all your questions so when you leave, unanswered issues are not left behind.

Remember that in this rapidly changing environment, many different personnel may see you. First you may see a minimally trained person who will record your vital signs and ask a few questions. Next, this information may be passed to a physician’s assistant who will take a short current history. The information is then presented to the physician who sees you.

In my life now as the patient rather than the doctor, I have been impressed by the excellence of care and concern by these persons. But there is one catch I have noted. In the passage of information from patient to admitter, from admitter to P.A., and P.A. to physician, some information gets lost in translation. That is why you need to write down your “chief complaints” and make sure vital issues are not overlooked. This will both help your doctor and maybe save your life.

 * Out To Lunch

This really happened. A friend went out to lunch with a few colleagues. After ordering they waited an unusually long time for their food. Finally, after an hour, he went up to the manager and complained. ‘Oh, said the manager, “Your waitress got into a fight with the cooks in the kitchen and left.” So the next time your food doesn’t arrive in an hour consider the possibility that your waitress went home.

* A Royal Slice of Bread

Granddaughter Brooke was at a bookstore with her mother. She had seen the book titled, “Monsters Eat Whining Children,” earlier in the week at a friend’s house and asked her mother to buy it for her. After reading the book at home mom said to Brooke, “See, if you don’t behave, the monsters will put you in a sandwich with cucumbers. Without missing a beat Brooke replied, “You better get some really big slices of bread.”

The ornery curmudgeon, Michael Arnold Glueck, M.D., Newport Beach, can be found at [email protected].

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