National Family Health History Day, which will take place on November 26, coincides with the Thanksgiving holiday. There is no better time for you to collect information about your family’s medical history than when several generations are gathered around the dinner table. Information about your family’s medical history will help you and your doctor to make informed decisions. Having an accurate family history can prevent a delayed diagnosis or a misdiagnosis. The more educated and informed you are about your health, the better.
Common Hereditary Diseases & Conditions
Many diseases and conditions are hereditary, which is part of the reason it is important to know your family health history. Some of the most common hereditary diseases and conditions include:
- High blood pressure;
- Heart disease;
- High cholesterol;
- Blood clotting disorders;
- Certain types of cancer;
- Cystic fibrosis;
- Complications during pregnancy.
There are many other hereditary health conditions that reappear from generation to generation. A family history of a disease or a condition does not mean that you will eventually develop the condition. Rather, it means that you are more at risk. By understanding your family health history, you can take preventive measures and be aware of early warning signs.
How Knowing Your History Can Save You from a Misdiagnosis or Delayed Diagnosis
For example, if you have a family history of heart disease, your risk for heart disease is increased. If your doctor is aware of this family history, then he or she can be on alert for risk factors or potential symptoms of a heart attack, such as high blood pressure or chest pain, and act accordingly. This is true for common diseases, such as diabetes and obesity, and less common diseases, like hemophilia. A family history of cancer, such as breast cancer or colon cancer, also can be important. Diseases and conditions often run in families.
When you are aware of the conditions and diseases that run in your family history, it provides you with more insight as to what your risk factors are. Your family history can also be important information and clues for your healthcare provider. You can be proactive about your health and changing your diet if needed to reduce the risk of developing certain conditions.
Learn Your Family Health History
One of the best ways to document your family’s health history is to use the online tool, My Family Health Portrait. Using this site, you can:
- Enter your family health history;
- Learn about your own health risks;
- Share your family history with other family members, medical professionals;
- Update your family health history at any time.
The more that you know about your family health history, the less at risk you are of becoming a victim of medical malpractice in Indiana.
Meet with a Misdiagnosis Lawyer Today
Documenting your family health history is an important step to safeguard the health of your health and your children’s health. Even when your family medical history is known, a healthcare provider may still act negligently, putting you at an increased risk of disease progression as a result of an incorrect or delayed diagnosis. If this has happened to you or your loved one, a skilled Indiana medical malpractice attorney can help. To speak with a legal professional today about your wrong or delayed diagnosis, contact the misdiagnosis lawyers at Baker & Gilchrist. Reach us at 317-272-0008 today.