Patient Blog

How Can Chiropractors Access Patient Imaging Records?

Chiropractor treating patient for spinal injury

Sonakshi was supposed to be taking it easy through her recovery, yet found herself going to great lengths to get her imaging records into the hands of her chiropractor.

Sonakshi was excelling at a genetics software company two years ago when a complex spinal injury changed the course of her life. No stranger to bumps and bruises, the Marketing Manager was initially optimistic her injury would be short-lived and things would soon return to normal. She couldn’t have been more wrong. 

“I think when you get injured, initially, you’re in denial,” she said. “That’s where I was in the first year. I just thought that this would go away — ‘Oh, in three months, I’ll be fine; in six months, I’ll be fine; next summer, I’ll be fine.’”

Burnt Out by CDs

As the reality of her situation began to sink in, Sonakshi recalls her limited understanding in those early stages. “I didn’t know it back then but complex spinal injuries can take anywhere from three to five years to resolve, which means a lot of scans, a lot of unknowns and seeing a lot of doctors and clinics at different locations.”

These scans would be vital to Sonakshi’s recovery, but prior to her discovering PocketHealth — a platform that makes it easy to access and share your own imaging results — acquiring imaging was anything but easy. She tracked down her latest results and paid $20 to have them burned onto a CD, only to find out her chiropractor had no way of reading the outdated technology.

“I actually ordered a CD drive online, took the images and made a Google file to share with doctors,” she said. “I was doing this for a while before I learned there was an easier way.”

Sonakshi Discovers PocketHealth

Life did get easier when last March, a staff member at a clinic she visited told her about PocketHealth and how easy it was to access scans by phone or computer. Without hesitation, she logged on to PocketHealth to access her imaging. She was relieved to discover she could now see every MRI and X-ray she had had done since suffering her injury. “I wish I knew about it before, frankly, because I’ve been dealing with scans for a while,” she said. “It’s been great to have it all in one place.”

Sonakshi now shares the results of every new MRI with her chiropractor, a process that has provided a wealth of information to one of the most critical members of her team. They go over her imaging together, and wait for the next scan to inform decisions about her rehabilitation plan. “She’s my co-pilot in my healthcare journey at this point,” Sonakshi said. “I was shocked that people who are such a big part of healthcare in Canada do not have access to these images and scans.”

Maximizing PocketHealth’s Capabilities

Sonakshi has also been able to use PocketHealth’s built-in Report Reader feature to gain a better understanding of her injury — a subject she now specializes in. “I’ve spent more time learning about spines than I spent studying for my graduate degree at this point,” she joked. “But it has definitely helped give me a better understanding of my own body and the care that I need.”

Additionally, PocketHealth was instrumental at a time when it was difficult to see a spinal surgeon in Canada and Sonakshi needed some peace-of-mind. “Unless you have a tumor in your spine or are dying from a life-threatening accident, you’re not going to get to see a spinal surgeon,” she said. So, Sonakshi sent her scans to a surgeon in her native India who provided advice and recommendations, but most importantly – he gave her reassurance that she was making progress in her recovery.

Seeing Better Days Ahead

Now, more than two years after suffering her injury, Sonakshi finally feels like she has turned a corner. After taking a leave of absence from work earlier this year to fully focus on rehabilitation, she recently resumed a full-time schedule. While she’s still recovering and adjusting to sitting and standing for longer periods at a time, her company has helped her slowly get her life back on track. 

“I think I’m done dealing with the worst of it,” she said. “I still have another year or two of recovery, so it’s going to take time.” Despite this, Sonakshi is hopeful. She recently started doing social activities again, like meeting a friend once a week. 

A spinal injury comes with so many uncertainties and on her uphill road to recovery, Sonakshi gained an appreciation for reliable tools that minimize ambiguities. “PocketHealth empowered me to have some control over my health and my diagnosis journey. Otherwise, you’re just kind of sitting in the dark as a patient waiting for your phone to ring.”

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