To all fellow-patients with chronic illnesses, (examples: neurological, suspected tick-borne illness,
chronic fatigue) and to all patients with unexplained symptoms: Suggestions for Using Lab Charts
(disclaimer: These charts are not meant to specify exactly what tests any one person with neuropathy needs. Please do not take them as the end-all or be-all of diagnosis of this often complicated syndrome. Rather, the charts are meant to help us organize the information amassed over months or years to help us and our doctors synthesize the information. Gradual changes over the years can be clues to what is ailing us, and only by having access to all our lab data can anyone detect these trends. Also, the suggestions for the evaluation of motor or sensory neuropathies are meant to work as a possible to-do list. I extracted them from a few websites and put them together in a way that I found helpful. I'm hoping that they will provide talking-points for discussions with doctors. Asking a neurologist why s/he is doing or not doing any of these can be helpful to everyone's understanding.)
- First step is getting the labs. Call your doctors' offices and ask them to mail you copies
of old tests. Request copies of nerve conductions, biopsies, etc.
- Print out or download the charts. You can type in dates or numbers, or do it the easier way, by hand. If you use Excel, you can customize them to fit your situation.
- I'd suggest putting the sheets in a loose-leaf binder, and making a section for copies of original reports. You can put copies of reports of xrays, nerve conductions, etc in their own section. That way you can bring copies to medical appointments with new doctors.
- If you download the charts into Excel, when you are on the webforum and discussing your situation, you can post your labs as an attachment to your message, and we all get to see them in this form.
- That's it. Good luck using them; I hope you find them helpful in understanding your neuropathy and keeping track of your general health.