Your Doctor’s Office Checklist

January 25, 2012 at 9:31 pm Leave a comment

Because time is limited during medical appointments, preparing your questions for the doctor beforehand will help make the most of your time with your doctor and healthcare team. During your appointment, start by asking the questions that are most important to you. The questions below can get you started:

  •  What is my diagnosis?
  • What are my treatment options? What are the benefits of each option? What are the side effects?
  • What is the test for? What will the results tell me? When will I get the results?
  • Why do I need this treatment?
  • Are there any alternatives?
  • What are the possible complications?
  • What will the medicine you are prescribing do? How do I take it? Are there any side effects?
  • How do you spell the name of the drug?
  • Will this medicine interact with medicines that I’m already taking?
  • Why do I need surgery? Are there other ways to treat my condition? How often and how many times have you performed this surgery?
  • Which hospital is best for my needs?
  • Do I need to change my daily routine?

Take notes or bring someone to your appointment to help you understand and remember what you heard. If you don’t understand or are confused, ask your doctor to explain the answer again.

Finally, find out what you are to do next. Ask for written instructions, brochures, videos or websites that may help you better understand your prognosis and treatment options.

Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Entry filed under: Managing your health.

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