[Sponsored] What to do when something’s not right: 5 Tips to getting the answers you need

Sponsored by Baton Rouge General Foundation

 

We all know someone who googled their dry eyes or ingrown hair to find websites that scared them into believing it was a sign of cancer. The internet has a way of making exceedingly rare diagnoses feel much more likely than they actually are. But what happens when your relatively minor symptom actually is cancer?

When Kimberly Babin’s eye stayed inflamed for nearly two weeks, she thought she just had a stubborn stye. Her doctor prescribed antibiotics, but they didn’t help. Eventually her doctor was able to diagnose her rare cancerous tumor. Kim was told she would need surgery to remove the tumor, then undergo 30 rounds of radiation treatments.

Many patients put off discussing minor symptoms with their doctors. They worry silently, embarrassed by their concerns and the worries from their internet research. But studies have shown that when patients are engaged in the medical decision-making process, they better understand the treatment options and risk factors.

Today, Kim is cancer free. The doctors at Baton Rouge General were able to fully remove the tumor and make her radiation treatment as comfortable as possible. Kim urges people to listen to their bodies and seek treatment for things that don’t feel right. “Just pay attention”, Kim says. “You know when something’s not right. Always get it checked out.”

As the region’s first comprehensive cancer program, Baton Rouge General’s Pennington Cancer Center has provided state-of-the-art treatment and compassionate care–right here at home—for more than 30 years. More than 20 physicians specialize in different types of cancer, as well as a variety of treatment options. Patients are treated in one of its cancer centers either at Mid City, Bluebonnet or the Zachary location, depending on the type of care needed. Click here to learn more about the Pennington Cancer Center and how to support cancer patients.


TRY THESE 5 TIPS TO PREPARE AND GET THE ANSWERS YOU NEED

1 Make a list of questions.  Sometimes people get nervous in a clinic or feel rushed and forget something.

2 Don’t skip any details. If something doesn’t feel right, mention it. Some things that seem small or insignificant can signal bigger issues.

3 Print or bookmark any online information you want to discuss with your doctor.

4 Bring a trusted friend or family member who can help you stay on track.

5 Make sure you learn how to access your online patient portal to keep track of your medical records, test results, medications and more.

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