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Coordinating communication between your doctors is up to you

December 1, 2021 at 10:00 p.m.

From 1951 to 1968, Mickey Mantle sustained 14 serious injuries on the ballfield and still managed to win three MVPs, a Triple Crown and seven World Series. Fortunately, the Yankees could coordinate the care Mantle got with all the various doctors who treated his head-to-toe traumas.

For the average person today, getting all your doctors to talk to one another -- and to know what's going on with your health -- is pretty, well, uncoordinated. That's why it's up to you.

A study in the Annals of Internal medicine reveals that 30% of seniors see five doctors a year, and many see even more. If that's you, it may provide targeted expertise for what ails you, but the downside is that you need to make sure each specialist knows what all your other doctors, including your primary care provider, are up to in terms of medications, lifestyle recommendations and diagnosis or identification of disease or potentially troubling conditions. And your primary care doctor needs to get all the data from each specialist, so it can be in one place for review. So, at each appointment:

n Ask for your records of that day to be emailed to you. Create a digital file and print them out.

n Take all your medical records of medicines, treatments, diagnoses, etc. with you to every doctor appointment.

n Ask questions. "Is anything you're doing or prescribing contraindicated with the meds I take or other treatment I am getting?"

The effort is worth the improvement that you'll receive in overall care.

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer Emeritus at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit sharecare.com.

(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D.

and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

King Features Syndicate

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