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The importance of your doctor to your health and your case cannot be overstated.  Your doctor really is vital for both.  One strong device to support your doctor with his interests in your health is to take a STARwith you to your examination. It is almost always appropriate to take someone with you to your appointments.  Take your husband or wife, your father, mother, an adult child or a sibling.  If no relative is available, take a good friend.  Have your STAR come into the examination room with you.  Having aSTAR with you helps establish and define in four dramatic ways the importance of your injuries:

Symptoms:  A family member may notice symptoms or patterns of behavior that you don’t see and can comment on these to the doctor.  These comments help the doctor discover and treat your injuries.

Time:  Another person taking the time to come with you shows the doctor that the people around you can tell you are hurting and care about you.

Accountability:  Unfortunately, sometimes it later may occur that you and the doctor remember statements that are made during the examination differently.  Another person present will help keep the doctor accountable.  Your friend or relative will be able to confirm your testimony about what was said, should it be necessary.

Remember:  The other person may remember to ask questions you forget to ask or don’t even think of.  A second person helps you remember instructions given and explanations made by the doctor.  Four ears are better than two.

Your doctor and your friend together can be ALL-STARS on your team.