Dr. Chris Phillips
Why Waiting to Start Treatment May Not Be the Best Decision
Updated: Jul 6, 2022
Sometimes, a rheumatic disease diagnosis can come as a bit of a shock.
Other times, a patient might have suspected the diagnosis.
Oftentimes, I still get asked the same question …
How soon do I need to start treatment or medication?
Throughout my time as a healthcare provider, I have seen the news of a rheumatic disease diagnosis be troubling, concerning, and even alarming to some of my patients.
I strive to ease that worry and anxiety by providing a personalized treatment plan.
I cannot deny that living with a rheumatic disease doesn’t have its challenges. It can be a struggle. It will have its ups and downs.
On the flip side, our goal at Paducah Rheumatology is for our patients to live happy and fulfilling lives.
We want to see you thrive. We want to see you do the activities you love. We want to see you keep up with your busy schedule and be successful.
That’s why we wholeheartedly recommend starting treatment as soon as possible once you receive a rheumatic disease diagnosis.
Why is this important?
Rheumatic diseases are progressive diseases. This means they tend to worsen over time.
The key is proper and prompt treatment.
I see all sorts of scenarios in our office. Patients that come in and we are able to “catch” the rheumatic disease early in its development and they receive a diagnosis in the beginning stages of the disease progression. I also see the opposite of that, when we are not so fortunate and the disease has already taken quite the toll on a patient.
The solution is the same, though. Treatment is needed immediately.
What is the right treatment for rheumatic diseases?
That answer is different for every single person.
Here at Paducah Rheumatology, we know that the solution for one individual may not be the best fit for another. And that’s alright with us.
We work hard to ensure each patient receives individualized care.
We want to get to know our patients and understand their personal circumstances. You are entrusting us with your medical needs, and we take that responsibility seriously.
Yes, treatment plans come in all shapes and sizes, but why wouldn’t they?! After all, patients come in all sorts, too.
We take the time to talk about what you hope to accomplish from a rheumatic disease treatment plan.
There is quite an expansive list of options - oral medications, IV medications, vitamin supplements, injections, creams, diets, exercises, lifestyle changes, and more.
A combination of all the above might be right for you.
Once again, the key is to begin some form of treatment right away.
The goal is to slow the progression of your rheumatic disease, treat the symptoms you are experiencing, and prevent the onset of additional issues.
What could happen if you do not seek treatment as soon as possible?
While that is a rather bleak question, it is important to understand the consequences of not properly caring for your body after being diagnosed with a rheumatic disease.
Rheumatic diseases are inflammatory in nature. Like with an autoimmune disease, a rheumatic disease is a condition where a person’s immune system turns on itself and attacks healthy cells.
This overactive immune response is harmful to your body and can lead to nerve dysfunction, joint damage, heart disease, blood disorders, blindness, bone damage, frequent infections, organ failure, certain types of cancer, and a long list of other complications.
You can halt or deter the far-reaching effects of rheumatic diseases when you take the necessary steps to care for yourself.
We are here for you!
At Paducah Rheumatology, we partner with our patients, working together to find solutions.
Our goal is to create a treatment plan that is best for YOU!
A rheumatic disease diagnosis is manageable when you give your body the correct tools to fight off potential disease progression problems.
Take action today, and give us a call at 270-408-6100.
We are accepting new patients with a physician's referral and would love to see you!