The Author: Veselības centrs 4
Immunologist is an internal medicine (basic clinical medicine) sector specialist, who links the disease process and the ability of the body to fight disease, by involving immune protective mechanisms in the fighting of the disease. Diagnoses and treats diseases that are associated with the pathology of immune system.
Clinical immunology as a sector of immunology integrates clinical and immunoregulatory aspects of different diseases in close conjunction with immunodiagnostic methods – performance of specific blood tests.
What does an immunologist do?
During the first consultation, an immunologist collects history, by asking detailed questions, therefore the patient must be ready for comparatively long conversation with the physician. The physician will also examine the patient, by palpation, measuring blood pressure, heart rate, body temperature, assessing heart function and listening to lung noises, assessing visual, hearing, sensory, motor and neurological functions, collect history – ask questions on the diseases a patient has suffered from at different phases of their life, the course of these diseases.
If the patient has a particular complaint, perform detailed analysis of when it has started to manifest, what therapy methods or medications were used and whether considerable improvements occurred at a particular period in life.
It is the course of disease that provides essential information to the immunologist. There is a common mistake – if a person is frequently ill, the immunity of their body is low. The main criterion is the nature of the disease course – quick, slow, tendency of becoming chronic, aggravation (deterioration of the course of the disease, the disease becomes more severe), it is not just frequency of disease.
In the conclusion of the consultation the physician shall determine the diagnosis and, prior to the commencement of therapy, possibly, will refer the patient to additional examinations.
Different blood tests must be performed to assess the efficiency of therapy. However, the main advice is – do not be afraid to ask the physician all questions that you are interested in, including the questions on the ''light'' and '' dark'' side of immunisation, which is also one of the competence areas of an immunologist.
Alarm signals that point to the need of visiting an immunologist
- When a person falls ill, but the recovery is delayed.
- If serious complaints appear after an acute disease.
- If there is a trend of different skin neoplasms like moles, papillomas, etc. to appear.
- If you observe that,at a certain period in time, the therapy used fails to provide the required results.
- If symptoms of allergy, allergic reactions suddenly appear.