For medical records, again, it’s been shown in studies that remembering your medical records is difficult. To remember the proper medication you are on, remembering that you have had pain in the past, even in the same body part. As a clinician I can tell you from experience I will have patients who have had surgery on their lower back or their neck a year ago, and the patient can’t remember what the surgeons name was.
So, it’s difficult to remember all of your medical problems, who your physicians have been, when you have had certain epidural steroid injections performed, when you even had surgery performed. A lot of times that information is helpful for me as a clinician trying to make a treatment plan for a patient. For the patient I am creating a medical record that is an official document so I just want to be accurate as much as possible for you moving forward. The medical record stays with you. If you have litigation that medical record will be used in litigation, so we want this to be accurate for no only medical records sake, but for completeness sake, and for your treatment sake as well.
A lot of times when patients don’t have this we end up, unfortunately making guesses and estimations, so the more information we have the better. Especially if I have a red flag, something that seems slightly out of the normal of what my experience, education, and training would dictate. I will come and help as much as I can with my practice to help you obtain your medical records. But, I ask most of my patients to obtain their own medical records so that you have it in your own possession, and for all of the reasons we have been discussing. For time, for cost to my practice and any practice, and so that you again have all of your pertinent information.
Again, there are studies to show that it is very difficult for patients to remember simple portions of their medical history. I don’t believe that most patients that I see are liars. I don’t think that most patients intentionally forget, it has just simply been shown that people can’t remember dates, times, places, treatments, doctors that they have had in the past.