Askme comment: answers your doctors need to decipher mystery symptoms June 1, 2012 10:51 PM   Subscribe

Looking for an AskMetafilter comment that listed recommended questions the OP should think about for an upcoming doctor's appointment.

An AskMefi question about unusual, vague, and intermittent set of symptoms (can't remember what exactly now) led to a thoughtful response with a list of questions -- sort of like "here's what your doctor needs to know to help you", and included recommendations such as writing the duration and intensity of symptoms, etc. Anyone recall this? I thought it was a sensible way to organize ones thoughts before heading in to a physicians office. Thanks!
posted by NikitaNikita to MetaFilter-Related at 10:51 PM (10 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

Is it this one?
posted by griphus at 4:25 AM on June 2, 2012

Pretty close (and still helpful!)... The one I'm thinking of was more symptoms based, specifically listing 5 or so questions, that help you describe track and organize a constellation of symptoms to describe to a doc, np, etc
posted by NikitaNikita at 5:29 AM on June 2, 2012

I learned/teach: QODLBARF(s). Pronounced KWO-dill-BARFS.
Quality - what's it like?
Onset - when did it start?
Duration - how long do symptoms last for?
Location - where is it?
Alleviating/(Worsening) - anything make things better/worse?
Risk factors - any risk factors such as job/family history/exposure to chemicals/travel?
F for Pharmacy - take any drugs/meds that might or might not be tied to symptoms?
S, now, for Social - how does it impact your social life/living habits?
posted by herrdoktor at 6:56 AM on June 2, 2012 [4 favorites]

Sorry, the above is just a basic outline of questions typically asked when obtaining a history of present illness. There are other components of a standardized history. Basically, stuff will include:
- a review of systems. A bunch of questions he/she might ask to cover and catch things you might not necessarily tie with your chief complaint. eg: Any fevers/chills, headaches/visual changes, chest pain, palpitations, edema, shortness of breath, cough, wheeze, abdominal pain, change in bowel/bladder habits, etc. List goes on. And on.
- allergies
- list of meds (I always include any OTC meds, herbal/supplements/etc. Some some healthy guy came in once with wickedly strange symptoms. Turned out he was taking a lot of something called JACK3D. Only he just called it "Jacked," and not "Jack Three-D," which is what I called it since I left my pro-cyberathlete career behind. Anyway-- include anything/everything)
- your past medical/family/social history.

But these are usually prompted. The history of present illness, or the section QODLBARF(s) is associated with, is basically where you should tell your whole story, in your own words. We learn stuff like QODLBARF(s) to help us remember not to forget to ask certain parts during the history taking. It's an outline. Not THE outline, or a catch-all.

The most important words MDs think about and write down are the ones that come out of your mouth, which includes answers to all the sections above.
posted by herrdoktor at 7:05 AM on June 2, 2012 [2 favorites]

What's the B?
posted by Hargrimm at 9:19 AM on June 2, 2012 [2 favorites]

posted by two lights above the sea at 4:30 PM on June 2, 2012

This came to mind, but it's quite specific.
posted by cp311 at 4:51 PM on June 2, 2012

Hah. I messed up.
B = Better/worse.
A = associated symptoms.

Didn't have my AM coffee.
posted by herrdoktor at 5:25 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

Thanks! That's it RichardP! Thanks for the other links/input too, all!
posted by NikitaNikita at 9:22 PM on June 2, 2012

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