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A physician’s appointment

In general, prior to the nephrologist consultation, it helps to prepare in order to ask questions and clear up any uncertainties. We have listed some tips for you that may help.

Making an appointment

A nephrologist is a specialist in kidney diseases, and you may be referred to one by your GP or another specialist for further management.

You may be offered the option of a virtual appointment by telephone or video instead of face to face.

If you cannot attend an appointment it is important to inform the hospital as soon as you can, to allow your apppointment to be allocated to another patient.

Arrive at the practice before your scheduled appointment time (about 10-15 minutes) to avoid a stressful start to the conversation with the physician and to be more balanced.

Preparation

Some physicians have a website where you can find out what you should bring or how to prepare for your first visit. Information may also be contained in the appointment letter sent to you. A current medication schedule, previous findings and a bullet-point list of the course of the disease, operations performed or existing allergies can prevent you from forgetting anything during the consultation. You may prepare a folder to keep this information all together. Some centres ask you to bring a urine sample. Consider everything that will make the visit easier, such as reading glasses, a book, etc. to help shorten the waiting time.

The consultation

Several visits to the nephrologist are necessary to get a comprehensive picture of the patient's health condition and to take appropriate therapeutic measures. Take notes during the conversation! The specialist will usually write to your GP after your consultation; ask if you can have a copy of this letter as it may help you remember information aspects of the consultation. This will prevent you from forgetting anything important and help you to reflect on the topics discussed afterwards.

Follow-up

Take a little time to digest everything you’ve learned. It may be difficult to learn many things that you never knew before. Did you understand everything the physician explained to you? Are there any unanswered questions? What is bothering you the most? What should be clarified at the next appointment?

Remember: The nephrologist wants to take care of you the best they can. This also includes informing the patient about the possible therapy options. Do not be afraid to ask questions if you have problems understanding certain topics! This will also make the physician understand you better.

Personal patient diary

It may help to keep a patient diary together with a relative/friend. In this diary, you can write down appointments with the physician and take notes on the following questions. For example:

  • When was the appointment?
  • With which physician?
  • What was it about?
  • What were the physician's recommendations?
  • What are my tasks (e.g. collecting prescribed medication from the chemist’s, making a new appointment, collecting a 24-hour urine sample, etc.)?
  • When is the next appointment?
  • Have I forgotten anything (to be clarified at the next appointment)?
     

Such a diary can help you and your relatives/friends to keep track of everything. A fixed structure can help some people to feel more secure.

Learn more about different therapy options in the next section

What is an Adverse Event (AE)

Any untoward medical occurrence in a patient or clinical trial subject administered a medicinal product and which does not necessarily have a causal relationship with this treatment [Dir 2001/20/EC Art 2(m)].

An adverse event can therefore be any unfavourable and unintended sign (e.g. an abnormal laboratory finding), symptom, or disease temporarily associated with the use of a medicinal product, whether or not considered related to the medicinal product (Annex 4 Guideline on good pharmacovigilance practices (GVP) Rev 4).

Reporting Side Effects

If you get any side effects, talk to your Doctor, Pharmacist or Nurse. This includes any possible side effects not listed in the package leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the Yellow Card Scheme at www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard.

By reporting side effects, you can help provide more information on the safety of this medicine.

Report an Adverse Event

Adverse events should be reported. Reporting forms and information can be found at www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard. Adverse events should also be reported to Fresenius Medical Care on 01623 445 215 and via medinfo-uk(at)fmc-ag.com.

Medical Information

Call 01623 445 100 (please choose option 5). Opening times are Monday-Friday 9am-5pm.

UK/HEMA/FME/0922/0002 – Date of Preparation September 2022.