Regular follow-ups and staying motivated are the key for achieving good health: Dr Utsav Sahu

Dr Utsav Sahu is a Consultant Physician and Diabetologist. He shares with THIP Media why communication with patient is necessary to determine the course of treatment.

What is the best thing you enjoy about treating patients?

The most rewarding aspect of being a doctor is that we are able to put together all our experience into solving the problems of our patients. We deal with people all the time unlike many other professions and that is a very humbling experience. It is an amazing feeling to save lives and see your patients getting better.

When is a patient easy to treat?

Patients are easy to treat when they follow the advice given by their doctors and trust them. A good patient is one who listens and accepts the facts and figures of their own current health condition and doesn’t try to change or alter the suggested line of treatment. Ignoring a health condition will never help a patient. Someone who is ready to apply the medical & lifestyle changes as being suggested by doctors is an ideal patient. Coming for regular follow ups and staying motivated are the key for achieving good health.

When is a patient difficult to treat?

Someone who follows hearsay instead of adhering to their clinician’s advice is a difficult patient. Bringing their own knowledge, judgment about doctor and diseases affect the treatment process. It becomes very difficult when they believe more on the things that they read on internet and misinformation becomes their first diagnosis. They should understand that correct medical knowledge and experience can be obtained from either an expert consultant or a verified source. A doctor studies for years observing different types of medical cases and learning how to handle the tough ones. Having full trust in your doctor is a must to treat the condition. A patient who is disrespectful, disobedient, arrogant, impatient, negative thinker, having a habit of changing doctors makes the work difficult for the doctor as well as for him/her.

How helpful is it to the treatment course, if the patient is knowledgeable about the treatment procedure, benefits, risks etc.?

It is very helpful.

If a patient has some scientific knowledge about body functioning, line of management, and how the current medicine trend is evolving, then it definitely helps. If both patient and doctors are on the same page, progress becomes fast, communication becomes effective and we can achieve our desired expectations in time.

How can a patient improve his or her knowledge about the treatment procedure (apart from consulting the doctor, of course)?

One must read good health magazines, authentic health articles from experts in their respective field from reliable sources to learn about upcoming trends and what doctors are saying. Patients can refer to latest journals, researches and data published.

How medical misinformation act as a problem in the overall treatment procedure?

Half-baked knowledge can mislead people, which can result to mistakes being made. These days people use google to search about their illnesses, and use the forwarded messages on social media to treat themselves. This causes serious side effects and chronic problems, as not everything available on social media is authentic. Misinformation is a very big problem.

A few advice that you always give to your patients (about staying healthy, about escaping misinformation etc.)

Always follow what your doctor say, as treatment is personalised, and the same medicine which helped a family member may not be fit for everyone. Treat every disease in a holistic way. Not only medications, but balanced diet, physical activities, changing lifestyle habits, sound sleep, managing stress through mindfulness including yoga, meditation and regular monitoring of health is the mantra for good health. One should progress with optimism and have faith in their clinician.

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