Our Nurses > Ask a Nurse > Keeping you “in check” through your checkup appointments
Keeping you “in check” through your checkup appointments
August 18, 2015
So here's the thing—I'm starting a different relapsing MS treatment. Yes, I'm happy about it. And I hope it does all I want it to do. But my healthcare provider says I need to go for frequent follow-ups.
Honestly, I was hoping this would mean fewer appointments, not more. Now I feel like I may be spending more time in the waiting room.
I guess what I really want to know is, why do I need to go in for all these checkups?
– Tired of All of My Follow-up Appointments
Nurse Susan replies:
Let's be honest—going to a medical appointment is seldom the high point of anyone's day. But, it's necessary. And most of the time it's about fine-tuning your treatment plan. And really, what's more important than that?
There are lots of reasons for frequent follow-ups. Your healthcare provider may want to check how you're responding to your treatment. He or she might want to track the side effects of your medication; all relapsing MS medications have them. So keeping on top of this issue is important. Or he or she may be concerned about other conditions you might have. For any of these reasons, I encourage you to follow your healthcare provider's recommendations. The truth is, monitoring is as much a part of your treatment as taking your medication.
Also, I noticed you said you are “starting a different relapsing MS treatment.” Good news—if the reason for a follow-up is lab work, you may not need to see your healthcare provider. It could be a visit to a lab for a blood draw, which is typically pretty quick. I hope that makes it a little easier! It may help to talk to your doctor about it and get a better understanding of what your check-ins are all about.
— Nurse Susan, MS One to One® Nurse
Helping since 2012