Didn’t Get What the Doctor Said? Ask for a Clarification

When your neighbor or a fellow parent at your child’s school informs you that they’re on the hunt for a new physiatrist in Rockville, do you know why that’s not exactly the same thing as being on the “hunt for a new doctor in Rockville?” The doctor/physiatrist difference has been known to stump more than a few otherwise well-informed people.

For those who aren’t part of the medical community, except as occasional patients, many medical terms are difficult to understand, remember, or even use properly. This is the case with terms that would usually be considered more the domain of laypersons — such a state of affairs is kind of a given for the esoteric-sounding and plainly technical names of rare symptoms and the components of drugs.
A misunderstanding about technical jargon among friends is one thing, but it’s a completely different matter when you’re discussing your health with a doctor. When you’re talking to your primary care physician in Rockville, ask for clarifications if you do not understand something. Open dialogue with your health care providers is the best policy.

Finally, for the readers out there who are still unsure about what physiatrists do, here are some light-giving facts for the next time there’s a debate about what a physiatrist in Maryland, or any other state, does. According to the Association of Academic Physiatrists, in the U.S, physiatrists are “trained to diagnose, treat, and direct” rehabilitation plans. They also treat neurological conditions.