What is the goal of the new patient consultation?
It's important to highlight the goal of the new patient consultation is to gather information about the patient that will help guide diet, lifestyle, supplement and lab recommendations that may be made initially. As patients engage in follow up consults, diet and supplement recommendations will be refined as feedback from the patients and labs are received. We will use the new patient paperwork as starting point to dive deeper into the patients specifics health issues. Some patient expect to get more info out of the new patient consult, but the expectation is really that the doctor receive more info about you to help guide our long term treatment plan (which will be reviewed more thoroughly when labs are in).
Dr. J and his staff will address the following during the new patient consult:
- What has worked and what hasn't worked: To get a sense of what has worked in the past and what hasn't worked in the past regarding previous practitioners and self-work. Our goal is to do more of what has worked and less of what hasn't worked. This information is also very meaningful in regards to coming up with a plan on how we move forward.
- Complete metabolic history: To get a complete view of your metabolic history (Gut health, respiration, neurological etc). This can give us clues in what direction we should head in. This also helps us prioritize diet, lifestyle, supplement and lab recommendations. Also, previous history from parents and relatives also helps provide very important information as well.
- Diet and lifestyle history: To get a sense of your previous diet, lifestyle, movement, sleep and lifestyle habits. This gives us a starting point regarding how much support you may need in upcoming consultations. Many people may need additional follow-up support regarding diet and lifestyle until they can show the doctor a level of competence in these areas. Some patients may be doing great and need very little support. Our goal is to create a customized program that meets each patient where they are at.
- Old labs: To briefly review old labs (If any) to get a sense of what has been on the radar with previous doctors. Some patients may only have a few labs which can be reviewed at the new patient consult (New labs will require a follow up consultation as they need to be reviewed more in-depth so protocols can be created from them) Some patients may have dozens of pages of lab results and typically need to be reviewed at the follow-up consult. We put more weight on labs within the last year and of course any labs where values have been outside of the conventional lab ranges. Dr. Justin will review your labs from a conventional perspective but also interpret the labs through an optimal health range perspective too.
- New labs: Once we have gathered the information from above, we will be able to prioritize and recommend specific new functional medicine lab tests to help us assess the function your body systems (Hormones, gut/infections, and detox). These labs help provide us with more information, so we can get to the root cause of your health challenges. The more labs we can order up front (typically 1-4 labs based on your body systems), the better we will be able to create a comprehensive functional medicine program that works. If you would like to pull back or increase the lab or supplement recommendations out of the gate, please keep an open dialogue with Dr. J and the office so we can calibrate our recommendations to your specific needs.
Important Notes: The most important thing is we at least work on taking small steps in the right direction of healing. Some patients may need to go slower out of the gates for many reasons, and some may want to go faster, both are ok. Some patients may expect a full treatment program right after their new patient consult, this is not possible as new labs haven’t been ordered and more data is needed to be collected before this can happen.
To review new labs in-depth at the new patient consult is not possible due to the time involved, we only briefly review old labs to get a sense of red flag issues that are already on our radar to help better guide new lab recommendations.
A full treatment plan will typically occur at the follow up consult and will be adjusted as we address each individual body system and more data comes in at future consults. If patients’ have realistic expectations entering the new patient consult, it allows us to work better together and improves our chances of helping you achieve your health goals.