Understand your doctor for better communication

Effective communication with your health care providers is important to understanding your diagnosis, treatment plan and financial obligations.

While most of us did not go to medical school, and should not be expected to understand all the terms our doctors use when discussing our health care, certain terms will lead to better communication that is accurate and informative. Don’t be embarrassed that you do not completely understand your physician’s instructions. Ask questions. It is better to ask than to leave the office unsure. It is your body, don’t be intimidated into self-conscious silence.

Medical terms are often a combination of terms so knowing components of words can help you wade through medical dialogue. For example, any term containing “pulm” is a term having to do with your lungs. Knowing the definitions of the following terms will help you better understand your doctors:

 

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