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What should I ask my doctor during every appointment?

Ask your doctor what recommendations she has for improving your health, such as lifestyle changes, screening tests or changes to current treatments. Make sure you know when to schedule your next appointment to follow-up.
During every appointment you should receive an overall assessment of your general health status, review diagnostic test results, and a medical/surgical plan for your condition. You can not ask too many questions. Bring a checklist of questions with you so not to forget your concerns. An open communication with your physician will definitely improve your overall experience.
There are specific questions you should ask your doctor, however before you even visit your doctor, make sure you write your questions down in a notebook.  By writing down your questions in advance you won’t leave without the answers you need.
Here are a few questions to ask your doctor:
  • What lifestyle changes should be made?
  • Should my diet change?
  • Are there certain foods that I should be eating?
  • How much exercise should I be getting and what do you recommend?
  • What’s my blood pressure?  Is it normal?  Should I be taking my blood pressure at home?  How often?
  • Do I need to have any tests?  Why? 
  • What blood work do I need and why is it important?
  • What’s the next step?
  • What are your suggestions for me to reach my optimum health?
Don’t forget to ask for a copy of your test results.
You may have several questions for your doctor, but these four should definitely be among them:
  • How is my health overall?
  • Are you concerned about any aspect of my health? Which one, and why?
  • Are there any tests I should have based on my age or for other reasons?
  • Do you have any recommendations about lifestyle modifications I should make (such as exercising, quitting smoking, or changing my diet)?
YOU: The Smart Patient: An Insider's Handbook for Getting the Best Treatment

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YOU: The Smart Patient: An Insider's Handbook for Getting the Best Treatment

Everyone needs to become a smart patient. In fact, in the worst cases, your life may even depend on it. Number one bestselling authors and doctors Michael Roizen and Mehmet Oz have written this...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.