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First visit

Posted by @anon13903977 in Visiting Mayo Clinic, Sep 6, 2012

I have a first appt at Mayo Rochester on Oct 1. I am planning to make the trip alone. I am concerned that not having a family member with me might be an issue, especially if I need to be weaned off some of my RX meds. Would like to know your take on this.

Tags: Mayo Clinic Minnesota


Posted by @anon60470134, Sep 17, 2012

They are amazing there. I stayed at a localities for one month. Don't be scared' good luck'

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Posted by @ulricberard, Sep 19, 2012

It is easier to go with someone. I went to Rochester by myself in May. I had never been to the Clinic before. Although every Minnesotan you meet seems considerate, the process can be intense and if you are there for more than a day or two, the decisions, paperwork, tests and expenses weigh heavily. If possible, ask a friend or family member whom you trust and whose opinion you respect to accompany you. I imagine that you are going to Mayo because you are dissatisfied with the outcomes of prior efforts involving a serious matter in your life. Because you have so much riding on this visit, it's all the more helpful to have another voice and a pair of ears participating on your behalf. After a day of interviews and tests, constructively processing what occurred that day is important but taxing each evening in your hotel room and over dinner. Just getting help to remember to ask all of your questions or to have another running log to reference and review for the next day can help you leave Rochester without regrets or miscues. I personally did not meet any other patient at Mayo who came without a partner. I did my best but it was exhausting and it was a case where two heads should prove better than one. Good luck. Clay

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Posted by @hump1278, Wed, Aug 31 at 11:08am CDT

How long of a day with tests do you have


Posted by @rosemarya, Wed, Aug 31 at 5:04pm CDT

Hi @anon13903977. Welcome to Mayo Connect. I see that you are already receiving good information. I am in complete agreement with @ulricberard. Mayo Clinic will provide you with very complete information and details about your situation. A 2nd set of ears is nice, but not essential. Be sure to take something to record information.
Myself, I needed to have someone with me due to my condition at the time. But I did see others who were alone.

I am providing the following information for you in case you haven't had a chance to check it out.
I wish you well. Rosemary


Posted by @kdubois, Tue, Sep 13 at 1:58pm CDT

@anon13903977 I had my husband go with me the first time I went to Mayo Rochester in late September 2015, but for my four subsequent trips since then, I've gone alone each time. I take notes during each visit in a little notebook I carry with me, and I ask the doctors to slow down if they are talking too quickly because I have memory issues. They each always comply, and I've seen doctors in many different specialties... Endocrine, GI/Hepatology, Neurology, Nephrology, Sleep, and more. Also, after your appointment, the doctor will write-up clinical notes fairly quickly (usually the same day), and these are then available to you via their secure patient portal. From my experience, they won't have you do anything you aren't comfortable doing, such as coming off of meds without a family member around. I was stunned by how nice everyone is there... the doctors don't have the typical egos that we have come to expect around the rest of the country. Good luck!


Posted by @hump1278, Tue, Sep 13 at 5:54pm CDT

Thanks how many days werw to there your first visit we were told 3 to 5 days jist wondering.

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Posted by @kdubois, Tue, Sep 13 at 7:29pm CDT

For my first visit, I flew in on Sunday and out on Thursday. Though we had someone to care for our kids, because we were both gone, we didn't want to leave them for a full week.

For my second and third visits in December and January, I went for a full week (flew in on Sunday and out the following Saturday.)

For my fourth visit, I flew in for only one appointment and lab test, but I thought that this would be the most important appointment and test of my life -- and I was right. (If interested, see my other post about Cytochrome P450.)

For my August 2016 visit, I flew in on Sunday and was supposed to fly out on Thursday, but they asked me to stay an extra eight days because they needed to run tests in order to see if I needed surgery. Normally, I would have had to wait three months for these appointments, but another patient had cancelled and they immediately gave me their appointment slots. I ended up staying a total of 12 days, and as a result, I am scheduled to have the surgery only five weeks from today instead of in December or January.

Here's the cool thing though -- be sure to ask about their "checker" system. If you have any appointment scheduled in the future -- whether two days or three months away -- you can just show up at that department and tell them that you want to be a "checker." If any other patients cancel or no-show, and the right type of specialist is available, they will give you that person's appointment time right-then-and-there. The checker system works for me at least 75% of the time.


Posted by @hump1278, Tue, Sep 13 at 7:45pm CDT

Sorry for all the questions but did you go fpr HSP or sometging else I hope qe are there forpre than 2 days paid for a room for ay least 3 hopefully they will do test and wjy did yiu have surgery if you dont mind me asking


Posted by @kdubois, Tue, Sep 13 at 8:12pm CDT

Thus far, I haven't been to the hospital at all. I've had all doctor consultations/appointments, imaging tests, and lab tests at the main Mayo campus. (There are two 18-story buildings hooked together seamlessly where most of the appointments are held.)

I don't mind... I'm having a surgery called a Nissen fundoplication. The sphincter muscle between my stomach and esophagus no longer functions, plus I have a 4cm hiatal hernia (i.e., 4 centimeters of my stomach is coming up into my esophagus). As a result, I have a huge GERD issue and always have heartburn -- so much so that it's like having a third degree sunburn in my esophagus. Usually, they would prescribe a proton pump inhibitor medication like Nexium to treat the GERD issue, but since Mayo figured out that I have a bunch of cytochrome P450 drug metabolization polymorphisms and I metabolize medications too slowly, I cannot take them ever again because these meds were building-up in my system and making me incredibly sick. Surgery is my only option. If not fixed, someday the stomach acid could cause esophageal cancer and other problems.

In October, on my first day there, I will be going to the main Mayo building again for a GI test to see if my esophagus works properly, one lab test, and to have my pre-operative appointment with my thoracic surgeon. Then the next day, I have surgery down the road at Mayo's St. Mary's hospital. I think it's about 10 blocks away.


Posted by @hump1278, Tue, Sep 13 at 8:38pm CDT

Wow I wish ypu luck and keep in touch .. thanks for sharing your story and

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Posted by @rosemarya, Wed, Sep 14 at 8:04am CDT

@hump1278 For your convenience I want to add that most motels have shuttles to transport you to and from the Mayo campus. So there is no need to worry about parking a car. There is also a regular shuttle between Mayo and St Mary's Campus if you need to go there. If you have a coat there is a coat check available, too. Everything you might need is conveniently connected indoors by an amazing series of walkways. There are places for food, and comfortable lobbies if you have down time between appointments. No need to worry about getting lost because there is an amazing team of volunteers at information stations located throughout the buildings.
Sending hopes for successful treatment and safe travels. Rosemary

Edited: 09/14/2016 @ 8:16am

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Posted by @kdubois, Wed, Sep 14 at 8:18am CDT

Good luck to you, as well!

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