Perplexed at What to Ask Your Cardiologist? Here is Help.
Everyone who has ever had an appointment with a medical professional has been there: You have multiple questions going into the exam and when asked if you have any questions, you ask one. Maybe it is intimidation or anxiety, whatever the cause, people seem to freeze up once they are in the examination room. When you come in to see a specialist in cardiology in Suffolk County, NY, here are some scenarios and some obvious questions you should use as reference.
The Initial Exam
The questions during the initial exam will be largely generic. They will cover whatever symptoms, incidents or situations prompted you to see a cardiology specialist.
- What condition does the cardiologist suspect is the problem?
- How to vital signs compare with what is considered “average?”
- What should be reported to the medical staff when symptoms occur?
- What can be done before an official diagnosis to begin the reversal, rehabilitation, or recovery process?
If You Need Tests
The questions you ask when you need tests are four-fold, at least initially. They are:
- What is the purpose of the test?
- Are their side effects or risk factors?
- How does it work?
- When will results be available?
For a Diagnosis
When the advanced cardiology tests come back, the cardiologist will probably be ready to make a diagnosis and begin to work on a treatment plan. Ask these questions before deciding anything.
- What does the diagnosis mean?
- What are the short- and long-term effects of the treatment?
- What is the risk of doing nothing?
- Can it be managed solely by lifestyle changes or is medication, surgery or rehabilitation required?
Your cardiologist will also prescribe for you a specific treatment regimen that can include changes in diet, exercising more, taking medication, having further in-hospital treatment, surgery, rehabilitation requirements and follow-up. For those scenarios, ask them the following:
- What is the treatment?
- Is it the optimal treatment?
- Are there any alternatives?
- Why is it needed?
- How is success measured?
- What are potential side effects to the treatment?
- Does it interact with any other medications?
- What is the dosage?
- How often is it to be taken?
- Are there any alterations needed when taking the medication to diet, behavior, lifestyle or other medications?
Every cardiology treatment has some form of follow-up. When covering that, make sure to ask these questions.
- What are the benchmarks of the treatment?
- When are they evaluated?
- What is the alternative if the treatment does not work?
- What follow-up is needed beyond the treatment regimen?
Everyone knows that asking the right questions when seeing a specialist in cardiology in Suffolk County NY, is valuable. Use these questions as a guide to make sure you ask the right questions.