Lupus got its name from the Latin word for wolves, Canis Lupus. Lupus manifests it facial rashes, like facial markings of a wolf.
MOST IMPORTANT: Finding the Right Doctor
You do not necessarily have to find a specialist to diagnose your lupus. A family practitioner, internist, or general practitioner can also diagnose the disease. However, when it comes to dealing with the variety of symptoms and side effects of lupus, you may end up visiting with a variety of physicians known as your treatment team.
For the most part you will end up seeing at least one of two specialists besides your current family doctor. If you have cutaneous lupus you will probably see a dermatologist to definitively diagnose your condition. A dermatologist is a doctor that specializes in skin disorders. However, you could also end up seeing an urologist, neurologist, cardiac specialist, and an orthopedic surgeon depending on your symptoms.
Yet when it comes to SLE, you will most likely be visiting with a rheumatologist. A rheumatologist is a doctor that specializes in treating arthritis, and other conditions of the joints, muscles, and bones. While these two medical specialties are focuses on symptoms that fit with your type of Lupus, there are some doctors that are more qualified than others, because they actually specialize in treating Lupus patients.
When you suspect that you have lLpus, you will probably start off working with your family doctor. He or she may recommend that you find a specialist, so you should know where you can find a Lupus doctor and how to choose the best doctor for you. Not every person’s disease travels the same path and people relate to doctors differently. Discuss your options with your family doctor to find someone who is well respected in the field but also fits with your payment options and personality. Also, be sure to check credentials and board certification. Do not be afraid to interview your doctors, because you cannot be intimidated about following your treatment.
Here are some resources that can help you find a specialist:
American Board of Medical Specialties:
American Medical Association:
Lupus Foundation of America:
St. Thomas Lupus Trust (UK) :
Preparing for the Consultation
Before you head out to discuss your Lupus with a specialist, you need to do some preparation on your own. Make sure you look up the doctor’s qualifications. There is no sense going to meet with a specialist that doesn’t specialize in treating Lupus. Also, talk to your insurance provider to if your visit is covered or what percentage will be covered.
Your medical history is also important prior to going in for your consultation. Start off by going through all of your prior doctor visits and write down any diagnoses and symptoms you have experienced. Write down a list of your medications. You should also write down some of your current symptoms like where you experience pain, how often, and how severe. Are there any triggers? What time of day is worse? Also, if you have any copies of your medical records, bring those with you. Finally, write down your family’s medical history, too.
You also need to write down some questions to ask your doctor. Why should you write them down? Sometimes the doctors will be giving you a lot of information, and you can often forget to ask something. If you take some time to write down your questions you will be less likely to forget something. Also, if you leave space, you can take notes so you don’t forget what the doctor is telling you.
Some of the questions you should ask when you are interviewing a potential specialist include:
How will you communicate with my other physicians?
Do you treat other patients with lupus?
What are your results in your other lupus patients?
Where will my tests be conducted?
How will your nurses be used in my care?
Have you ever worked with any of my other doctors?
When you finish “interviewing” the specialist, you should ask yourself the following questions to determine if this doctor is the right fit:
Did the doctor and the staff treat me with respect?
Was I given all the time I needed to ask questions and get answers?
Did the doctor appear knowledgeable about lupus?
Did the doctor and I communicate well?
Thank you Freedon from Lupus
Chosing the right Doctor is like chosing the right marriage partner…
When you talk to this Physican, ask them about the number one Super FOOD in the World the Acai Berry.
If they don’t tell you about all the great advantages to taking this fruit…then they are the wrong doctor! Medications are wrong for a Lupus patient…as drugs induce worse actions/reactions with your body.
If I can help you in any way…contact me…I will assist you in any way that I am able. I am NOT a Doctor, but I am a Lupus Survivor and I want you to be too!
Smiles and world peace,
~The Baby Boomer Queen~