- As an individual with a very lengthy medical history (one which is very complicated as well), I have found tremendous importance in making sure that I have all my records at my own disposal, even though my doctors, and the medical system itself, has them on file. It's your right as a patient to have all of your medical records, and as a general rule, whether you are ill, disabled, or seemingly healthy, you do yourself a great service to collect all past, present, and future medical records and keep them in your possession. Even while it's the responsibility of a medical system/practitioner to keep your records on file, you never know what could happen to said records, and you are much better off safe than sorry. Medical records have been known to "disappear," both via accident, and some through intentional, but illegal, disposal.
- To request and obtain your records you are required to fill out a medical records release form. You may contact your medical office's Medical Records Department by phone and fax, but you are better off actually visiting this department in person. If you have more than one medical provider, including specialists and other healthcare practitioners, you may need to fill out multiple release forms, especially if you have been seen at different hospitals and within more than one medical system. Make sure that you collect every piece of your medical record; including any scans, x-rays and test results. There is a section on the form where you check which records you are requesting, make sure to check all of the boxes, and if something is not listed/specified, make sure you check the "other" box and explain the record(s) you are seeking. Yes, you may be required to pay a small fee for some of your records (more specifically your actual physical scans like MRI's, CT's and x-rays), but, trust me, if you find yourself in a less than lovely situation in the future where you need those records and they have magically disappeared, it could mean the difference between a proper diagnosis, denial of benefits, or even a smaller settlement for a medical malpractice lawsuit.
- Do yourself a big favor and create your own medical history file in your home or place of business. This is YOUR RIGHT as a patient. Your medical provider and/or insurance company cannot deny you access and copies to your medical records, and you do not have to disclose your purpose for requesting them, period. If you feel hesitant for any reason, simply mark your reason for request as "continuing medical care." This reason is never a lie, because as long as you are alive, you will always be receiving some form of ongoing medical care. Once you have copies of your medical records, review them and make sure that they contain your entire history. Never give these records away. If someone needs to view/copy any records, make sure you tell them that these records are your own personal copies and must be returned/not kept for use in any new files. Be careful with this matter, as with some medical offices, once you allow transfer of possession, even if you tell your doctor that these are your own personal copies, they can then be kept in their files and they will not release them back to you. I learned this the hard way. So, please ensure that any records you carry with you, are copied and returned to your file/possession that same day. No files left over night!
About Spondylolisthesis Stories ...
Welcome! Spondylolisthesis Stories is a compilation of personal stories involving individual's diagnoses, experiences, surgeries, and life with Spondylolisthesis.
My hope is that this site may offer a voice and platform for those with the spine condition to share their personal stories with the medical community, fellow Spondyo patients, and the world as a whole. Spondylolisthesis Stories also provides a wide array of information, personal knowledge, support and ideas for those with Spondylolisthesis. Whether you were recently diagnosed, learning to live with the condition, making difficult decisions regarding surgical interventions, in the early phase of recovery following an operation, or further into your journey, this site covers it all!
In addition to general stories about this spine condition, personal stories which focus on the subject of Spondylolisthesis & Pregnancy may also be found. These shared experiences detail the matter of labor and delivery, and include women with both unfused slips and those whom have had surgery prior to pregnancy. It has been my experience that this topic is one which is shrouded in some mystery. By sharing these stories I hope we may be able to shed some light on the subject; offering guidance and ideas to those females with Spondyo who would like to become pregnant but fear the unknowns which this condition can create.
I am always seeking new stories and would love to hear yours! Let your story and voice be heard! Please contact me (Brenna), at firstname.lastname@example.org, in order to share your story here. If you are seeking additional help and support from others with Spondyo, please ask to join the "Spondylolisthesis and Retrolisthesis Support Group" on Facebook. *This group is closed, and therefore, offers a higher level of privacy and comfort for all members to share openly and without fear of judgement. It is open to anyone with Spondylolisthesis (or a family members of those with Spondylolisthesis) to join.
Below the Spondylolisthesis stories you will find several survey questions. If you have Spondylolisthesis, please take a moment to review these questions and select your answer(s). You are also encouraged to join in and participate by interacting in the "Community Answers" board, located at the bottom of the page. Feel free to post questions and comments, share stories, answer the questions already presented, and ask your own questions! I greatly appreciate your participation and look forward to reading your answers and comments!