Quality Care for New Rheumatology Patients

If your chronic pain has been dismissed by other doctors or your pain continues to accelerate even after treatment, you’re not alone. Patients with chronic conditions are misdiagnosed 40 to 80 percent of the time. In addition, pain can evolve into its own disease even after an illness or injury that led to its initial onset is treated. 

The leading cause for misdiagnosis, according to researchers from Johns Hopkins Hospital, is that providers fail to take a thorough and comprehensive history from the patient. It’s not surprising since the average specialist sees more than 20 patients a day, shortening each person’s visits to just minutes.

That’s just not enough time to learn about your full medical history, let allow give you the opportunity to ask all the questions you have. 

As a direct patient care provider, Rheumatologix in Knoxville is able to focus on our patients rather than their insurance companies. When you become a member, rheumatologist Dr. Tonya Baker will take the time to get to know you on a one-on-one basis so she can accurately diagnose your condition and tailor care throughout your journey to better health.

What to Expect at Your First Visit

Because chronic pain and autoimmune diseases are incredibly complex and difficult to identify, time is the best tool a rheumatologist has. Dr. Baker uses every minute of your initial 90-minute visit to decipher the clues needed to diagnose your pain or determine a new plan of action to modify your current treatment plan:

  • 60-minute consultation – During your visit, Dr. Baker will take a deep dive into both your medical and family histories to understand how your genetics, lifestyle, and past injuries or illnesses have led you to where you are today. In some cases, a conversation between provider and patient uncovers simple changes you can make in your daily life to ease your symptoms, from modifying your diet to getting more sleep. By getting to know you as the individual you are, Dr. Baker can tailor a care plan to you.
  • 30-minute physical exam – Through a physical exam, Dr. Baker can observe your flexibility, range of motion, pain tolerance, and disease progression in relation to your condition as well as identify potential warning signs of an autoimmune or inflammatory disease. She will also order blood and lab work as needed, and in some cases, schedule X-rays or MRIs to better comprehend what’s going on inside your body.

Once you are diagnosed and become a member of Rheumatologix, you can easily schedule appointments with Dr. Baker for routine checkups as well as book same-day urgent care visits. You’ll also get medications and labs at reduced prices, be eligible for two injections per year, and if you upgrade to our Platinum Package, you’ll receive 24/7 access to Dr. Baker via phone and two at-home visits a year.

To learn more about scheduling your consultation with Dr. Baker, visit our Membership page. Before your first appointment, be sure to complete our new patient forms and bring them with you to your visit.