Top tips for getting the most out of your appointment
Before your appointment
Write down your two or three most important questions.
Write down details of your symptoms, including when they started and what makes them better or worse.
During your appointment
Don’t be afraid to ask if you don’t understand. For example, ‘Can you say that again? I still don’t understand.’?
If you don’t understand any words, ask for them to be explained.
Write things down or ask a family member or friend to take notes.
Before you leave your appointment
Check that you’ve covered everything on your list you understand, for example ‘Can I just check I understood what you said?’
Make sure that you know what should happen next – and when. Write it down.
Ask who to contact if you have any more problems or questions
Ask about support groups and where to go for reliable information and ask for copies of letters written about you – you are entitled to see these.
Keep your notes from the discussion.
Book any tests that you can and put the dates in your diary.
Questions that you may find useful during your appointment:
Questions about tests What are the tests for? How and when will I get the results? Who do I contact if I don’t get the results?
Questions about treatment Are there other ways to treat my condition? What do you recommend? Are there any side effects or risks? How will I know if the treatment is working? How effective is this treatment? What will happen if I don’t have any treatment? Is there anything I can do to help myself?
What next What happens next? Do I need to come back and see you? Who do I contact if things get worse? Do you have any written information? Where can I go for more information? Is there a support group or any other source of help?
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