Friday, December 10, 2010

how to descripe symptome and health queries in Englihs by phone - example

II. In these days of telemedicine, unless one is able to describe
symptoms clearly while asking health queries – over the phone –
one cannot be ensured of correct diagnosis.

Read the following telephone queries of patients to a panel of
doctors on the ‘Sugam phone-in’ show on TV:

Compére : Welcome viewers to our ‘Sugam phone-in’ show!
This week, we have with us Dr. Balan, Paediatrician,
Dr. Ammaiappar, Geriatrician, Dr. Tholkappiar,
Dermatologist, Dr. Brian D’Souza, Neurologist and
Dr. Bonnie Rajkumar, Orthopaedic surgeon. We
request our viewers to be brief in their queries and
spell out their symptoms clearly. Remember our no.
is 044-28279210. Here’s our first call.. (tr…ing…ng..)
Caller 1 : Question to Dr. Tholkappiar, please.
Dr.T : Yes, ….
Caller 1 : Doctor, I’m Harry, an 18 yr old college student. I
have lost a lot of hair in recent months. I have an
itchy scalp too. I have not changed my hair oil or
shampoo, recently. I drive a two-wheeler and wear a
helmet. Could that be the reason for my hair-fall?
Dr.T : Certainly not, Mr. Harry. It is a myth that wearing a
helmet will cause loss of hair. Your problem could
be dandruff. Check if there are white powdery flakes
on your scalp. It is dandruff that is a major cause of
hair-fall. It causes itchiness too. Use anti-dandruff
shampoo twice a week. Candid TV could prove
effective. If you have an oily scalp, wash your hair
regularly. Dust and dirt, combined with oil could
cause dandruff. Also use your own comb, towel, etc.
Caller 1 : Thank you, doctor.
Compére : Our next caller …. (tr…ing…ng..)
Caller 2 : Question to Dr. Bonnie Rajkumar.
Dr. B R : Yes, please.
Caller 2 : I’m Nikita, a medical transcriptionist. For the past
six months I’ve been having pain at the joint of my
neck and spine. It arises when there is a jerk while
travelling on my bike, or when I bend down to work.
Sometimes I also have giddiness. I had an x-ray
taken and doctors said that I don’t have spondilitis. I
apply hot water fomentation and gels when pain
occurs. How do I get rid of it?
Dr. B R : Your complaint is common among computer
professionals. You need to take a few precautions.
Do not work for more than 45 minutes at a stretch.
Always rest for 15 minutes every hour. Your keyboard
should be close to your body, i.e. your elbow should
be bent at an angle while working. Use a thin pillow
at night. Neck exercises are useful. Try these
exercises.(Demonstrates a couple of exercises.)
Compére : There’s our next caller ….. (tr…ing…ng..)
Caller 3 : Hello, is it ‘Sugam phone-in’ show?
Compére : Yes, it is.
Caller 3 : I’m Mrs. Guna. My question is to Dr. Balan. My
daughter aged three, suffers from frequent cold, cough
and wheezing with fever. On several occasions the
child vomits food with mucus. We give her only
boiled water. Doctors have diagnosed Upper
Respiratory Tract Infection and prescribed
medicines, which only give temporary relief.
Dr. B : Many children have this problem, which is very
recurrent when young. Don’t worry provided the
child is active, gaining weight and sleeping
peacefully. A child vomiting, especially after a bout
of coughing, is not a cause for worry because it
clears the airways blocked by mucus. Some
preventive measures could be taken like, preventing
her from playing in the mud, drinking iced drinks or
going into an AC room after sweating profusely and
avoiding smoking around the child. Continue the
medicines and her immunity will gradually improve.
Compére : Viewers, please stay with us. We’ll be back with you
after a short break for the commercials.

Task 1: Practise the above questions and answers, taking turns.

Task 2: Prepare a list of queries to be asked to a doctor/panel of
doctors. Practise them.

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