As a patient who is juggling multiple obligations throughout the day, in both work and health, I have found still, after ten years living with my rare chronic illness diagnosis, that explaining my entire medical history to a new physician is just as daunting as the first time.
I was diagnosed with a rare vascular disease, Takayasu’s Vasculitis, when I was just twenty years old. It overwhelmed me, to say the least. Having to accept the diagnosis forever shifted my life as I knew it. In my new normal, the amount of time, effort, and energy needed to sustain a life like my own requires radical change and self-commitment like no other.
Throughout the years I have made it past notable hurdles in my health journey worth celebrating. Because of the miraculous work of healthcare professionals, I’ve regained feeling in my limbs, sight in my eyes, a regulated heartbeat, speech after a mini-stroke, and countless other feats of victory.
But I’ve also had my fair share of hospitalizations, countless lab work each month, procedures, surgeries, tests, scans, medication changes, and all kinds of things my one overloaded brain cannot always remember on a whim.
As a “spoonie” -- a person living with an invisible chronic illness or permanent physical disability -- part of my norm involves checkups and consults with a wide array of specialists in various medical fields. That includes new doctors who haven’t been looped into my care plan or history since Day 1. And if they haven't been there since Day 1, they need to be caught up. It's a lot of catching up.
That’s where an app and service like OneRecord plays a major time-saving factor. As a chronic illness warrior, OneRecord allows me to rest my weary memory for a moment. I can simply refer to something that's already in my pocket or my bag: my phone. And there's the app, ready to go.
On the app I can easily create a profile that consolidates past medical facilities and institutions that I’ve visited, or places I’ve gotten specific tests and blood work done. I can even share those records with the doctor instead of going through the mess of having providers send records to one another.
I think of OneRecord as a personal medical records assistant, plucking my file from each of the places I’ve received care and organizing them in a digital filing cabinet.
It’s worth mentioning again: OneRecord is a valuable tool for anyone, especially those who need to be able to rely on something that holds their information securely and accessible at a moment’s notice. If your already tired body and mind are ready for a rest, give it a try. It's free and easy to use, and you'll probably thank yourself the next time you go to the doctor.