Friday, June 10, 2011

Health Records Organized

Summer in our house is when we get caught up on all of our medical appointments, so last week I took the girlies for their annual physicals. As we were driving to the medical center, I realized that I had never blogged about their Health Record books.

Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit, what was I thinking?

I made these books for the girls when they were little bitty things. Sadly, I didn't think of putting one together when we were in the midst of Zoe's medical adventures, or her book would have been a wee bit fatter.

For the first year of Zoe's life, I spent a good many of her naps at the kitchen table, with medical bills spread out, trying to sort through all the details and making sure everything got paid by the insurance company. It was a nightmare.

After that experience, I vowed to always be prepared when it came to our medical history. I wanted something portable that I could jot down questions, record appointments and results, and then always have that information in one place to refer to while I was at the doctor's office. 

I started with just a small spiral bound notebook and added stick on notebook tabs.

The first section in my books is where I jot down questions that I want to remember to ask at the next doctor visit. This section alone has been a huge help, because I cannot be relied upon to remember things that are not written down. 

Which is why I am blogging about this thing that I love several years later than I should have. My bad.

The next section is where I keep track of immunization records and prescriptions.

Both of my girls have the little immunization cards that were given to them at birth, but who can read those things? Doctors have sloppy penmanship.

Yes, I'm making a sweeping generalization.

The other thing I don't like about the immunization cards, is they don't give any indication of when immunizations are due. I like to plan, you know.

Enter the spreadsheet with color-filled cells. As you can see, my spread sheet isn't perfect. I still missed a couple spots, but I'm dealing with it. I am calmed by the fact that the record is in chronological order. That, and I can see that May 11, 2004, was a very bad day for Stinkerbell.

Probably it was for me too. She was such a vengeful child.

I didn't take any pictures of prescription entries, but what I usually do is attach the receipt that has the date and what the prescription is. It's a quick way to keep a record of prescriptions.

This one is pretty self explanatory. Let me just put it out there right now, I have one of these books for myself, and it does not contain this section. For obvious reasons.

This is an example of the growth and development of Stinkerbell. I would have included Zoe's, but she's a bit of a runt and the progression isn't quite as spectacular.

Her mind was developing faster than her body. Yeah, that's it.

Zoe is my flower. Annika my weed.

Whoa, bad picture. But I'm not taking it again, even though it's making me a little twitchy.

So, as the label says, Medical History . . .

I still remember this entry. Annika was born with seriously bowed calves. In addition to that, she had these odd little feet that she used like hands. I used to call her my little monkey because she reminded me of a monkey when she would pick things up with her feet.

Her little monkey feet turned in, and they were sort of floppy when she walked. I was concerned, so I made an appointment with the Monkey Doctor.

Or maybe it was a Podiatrist. Or an Orthopedist.

Whatever, Monkey Doctor is easier to remember.

It turns out that her feet are fine, it's her hips. She has a freakishly large range of motion in her hips that allow her to do this:

And this:

Creepy, isn't it?

Since it appears to be another very bad day for Stinkerbell, let's just keep going with this, shall we?

Zoe had a weeping eye thing going on, so she was taking Amoxicillin. I put a dose of Amoxicillin in her sippy cup diluted with milk, and Annika yanked it out of her hands and took a couple swigs of it before I could intercede.

As a result, we found out that Annika is allergic to Penicillin because she broke out in a full body hivey rash.

I took these pictures two days after the initial exposure and one day after The Stink started taking Zyrtec to treat the allergic reaction. It didn't even occur to me to take these pictures for her Health Record until then. Doy.

Anyway, I have this picture and a few others in Annika's Health Record book to document her penicillin allergy.

As I mentioned, I made Health Record books for Peanut Head and I too. Except ours are not as pretty as the girls' books.

We have different sections too. Not just minus the scandalous Growth and Development section.

We do have the questions section though. I like to clip and save propaganda intended to scare people into ordering expensive medical tests, save them for my yearly, and pull them out of my handy dandy Health Record to confront my doctor with. I like to discombobulate him. 

For some reason, that sounds so dirty, but it's perfectly innocent. Good clean fun, I promise.

Peanut Head and I also have a section labeled Blood Tests. The main thing I watch and keep track of is our cholesterol. I need to know when it's time to stop with the bonbons.

I did my best making a spread sheet for my immunizations, but who knows if they're all there. My mom isn't the most organized person in the world, so these numbers could potentially belong to someone else. 

In fact, I think they do. Look at those dates. April 1966! That was the Olden Days.

Mom? Was I adopted?


  1. These are terrific! When I had my first (4 years ago) I was paranoid that I would get really disorganized with all the medical stuff so I searched around until I found something that would keep it all together. Obviously, as you did, you can DIY the whole thing. For those looking for an all-in-one premade option check out Your Family Health Organizer (by Jodie Pappas). Just google it. It's got space for both parents and up to 3 children with all the sections you talked about. Small enough to be portable too! :)

  2. I really enjoyed this entry. I know it wasn't for me, but the RN & Mom's in me found it awesome, and kind of hilarious. LOVE that you have all of this information. I wish I would've thought of such a log earlier in the kids lives. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Once again, impressed with your organizational mind....and madskilz.
    You rock!
    Love the books, wish I had done them especially with my last.

  4. youre amazing, i wish i had thought of this- or done it with someone elses idea! I suppose they are small enough to start now! I think i might just do that... I love copying you :)

  5. This is fantastic! We also catch up on all the medical stuff over the summer so this was very timely indeed! Have I mentioned how much I enjoy your blog? No seriously, I am such a scatterbrain since having my kids, I need someone to point me in the right organizational direction sometimes ;) Thanks so much for sharing!

  6. Skooks, I have seen the family medical organizers, but I wanted the girls to have their own so they could have their records when they leave home. Even though they aren't allowed to move out until they're 25. :)

  7. I really wish you would have shared this with me 20 years ago when my first child was born. I am usually accused of being OCD/organized, but you seriously put me to shame! I. Love. You.

  8. Hey Missy

    I remember that date (April '66), it was snowing like crazy--------I think. It's true though, I'm not very organized. Yes, you must be adopted or they switched babies on me:-(

  9. Wow, okay, I LOVE these books. Seriously.

  10. Hi!
    God, you are really organised-totally like my dad! :) I love these books!
    I am your Follower.
    I really like your blog! Great posts!
    Keep up the good work!
    Do visit my blog too and follow it if you like it!
    Have a Nice day, God Bless!


  11. I absolutely love this and appreciate you posting about it! I am 33 weeks along and starting this before he's born will be a wonderful asset. I will look organized (for the first time in my life!) Thanks!

  12. Very the pictures of Annika's legs doing strange things. I do those...not everyone can? I had no idea. Seriously! I sit like that all.the.time!