When to see primary care doctor

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mechiko
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 82
   Posted 2/23/2011 7:17 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm having a dilemma about whether or not to see my primary care doctor. I'm experiencing symptoms that make me think I'm either having another flare or an infection. I don't have an obvious source of infection (no sore throat, UTI, etc.). Either way I'm miserable (feverish, pain, fatigue), and either way I have to work tomorrow (I'm a nursing student and can't miss clinical hours). I feel like I go running to my doctor all the time, and I don't like to go unless I have to.

What are your personal guidelines for when to see your doctor? Most likely I would be prescribed prednisone or antibiotics, neither of which I'm super excited about getting :/



Kathryn

Lynnwood
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7723
   Posted 2/23/2011 9:08 PM (GMT -6)   
If it's not lupus related, I use the "3-day rule" -- if it's not getting better with my OTC treatments by 3 or 4 days, then I see the PC (GP).

If it's lupus-related, I treat with whatever med variations the Dr has pre-approved. If it's something new and bothersome, I might try to move up my regular (normally every 3 months) rheumy appointment. If it's a recurrence of something that's happened before, I might call to get a med that's been used successfully before if it's not something I already have on hand.

Infections can get worse quickly with lupus, since our regular meds tend to hide them until they are worse than for the average person...thus my 3-day rule (pre-lupus it was more like a 7-day rule! lol)

Hope that helps!
Lynnwood, Lupus & Sjogren's Moderator
"Life is far too important to be taken seriously" - Oscar Wilde

mechiko
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 82
   Posted 2/24/2011 4:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you, yes it does help. I like the three-day rule. However with some infections, even three days is too long - last November I had a tonsil infection and at the first signs of infection (swollen gland and fever) I went to urgent care and got antibiotics. Even with that I was septic within 24 hours! The antibiotics hadn't started to work yet.

Pain kept me up most of the night last night, definitely a flare. Called in sick, went to doctor, got prednisone (a month-long taper).

I am having such an issue with flares lately - I just go from sick, to sicker, back to sick, then sicker again - I never really get better. My rheumatologist is frustrated that my treatments aren't working and has referred me to another specialist in another state who I can't see until May. It's very discouraging.


Kathryn
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