You and Your Doctor: Why a Good Relationship is Important

Fibromyalgia is a frustrating condition, not only for the patient, but also for the physician who may be doing his or her level best to sort out a series of symptoms which can be confused with the symptoms of many other conditions.

As anyone who has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia will tell you, there is no simple blood test to diagnose fibromyalgia. Ah, if only it were that easy! Instead, a physician has to go about diagnosis in a roundabout way, ruling out which condition you don’t have before figuring out what you do have. This is why it may feel as though your doctor is throwing every test in the book at you.

The process of diagnosis can be very difficult for both the patient and physician. Patients may feel as if they are not believed or validated in regards to the often long list of symptoms they are experiencing, while physicians may feel as if patients expect them to work miracles and end their suffering immediately. Without both parties paying a lot of attention to their relationship in terms of respect and understanding, frustration may boil over into a negative relationship that is of no practical use to either party.

Physician-patient relationships require the same care and dedication as any other interpersonal relationship. In order to have a mutually satisfactory working relationship, both parties need to:
• Respect each other’s opinion
• Actively listen to each other
• Be honest at all times
• Respect each other’s knowledge

Once the diagnosis of fibromyalgia has been made, this relationship becomes even more important, as attention turns from diagnosis to lifelong treatment. Having a great relationship with your doctor can make it easier to cope with a chronic illness. If you enjoy a good relationship with your physician, count yourself as among the fortunate; having your physician on your side will make all the difference in your health and outlook.


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Fibromyalgia is a prevalent condition that affects many people in the United States. Approximately 3.7 million Americans have Fibromyalgia. That is 1 in every 73 people.

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