Sunday, July 29, 2012

Better late than never

Last winter I was approached by Tory Zellick, the author of "The Medical Day Planner" asking me to review it and then make it available to people at the Center where I work. I said I would because I had plenty of time. The book didn't show up when promised and my life got VERY busy for several months. In the midst of all that the book showed up and as I was busy I put it aside - like every non essential thing in my life. It got lost in a pile of books to deal with.

Finally I rediscovered it and said to myself "oh crap I did say I would review it didn't I?" Then yesterday Ann, over at But Doctor I Hate Pink reviewed it and started a contest for a copy of it. I started to feel like a slacker and the guilt piled on. So here is my review:

One word: wonderful. One request: everyone should be issued one of these at birth.

Seriously. I looked at it and said why don't I have these records of my entire life? I have chemo brain and have no idea. But if I had had this book issued at birth and kept it up to date I would have known.
It makes me want to go back and put in all the information I have on my medical adventures - but I think I might need a second or third copy before running out of space.

My mother used to keep a file on each of us children full of useful things like birth certificates, doctor notes, immunization records, and report cards. I have no idea where my folder is now. I may have it or she may still. I have kept diligent records over the last five years of every medical expense (for tax purposes), appointments, and medications. I have a folder which is labeled "Current Medical" that has my recent test results. I know who all my doctors are and how to reach them - most of them conveniently are at the same hospital where my patient number will unlock the piles of information on me.

I could have used one for my husband as well. He doesn't remember his medical ailments and what he has done either. He did have some medical adventures a few years ago that could have been very nasty but ended up with good results. I wish we had written all that down then as well. Actually he doesn't know it but he has a little section in each of my medical appointment and expenses list so I can track that part of his as well.

But back to the book, unless you are perfectly healthy go buy a copy. If you have never had any ailment - even the common cold - you don't need it. But since we all have had the common cold we all need it. Get a copy for your spouse and each child as well.

It is conveniently broken out into useful sections - patient information, phone book, medication appointments, treatment, procedure history, test and scan history, hospitalizations, notes, and day planner. I'm not sure if a one year day planner will be helpful to me but all the other sections are incredibly logical and useful. Some things would be written in pencil to be erased and updated but others could be indelibly etched in ink.

So what are you waiting for? Go buy a copy!

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