By ACCORDANT HEALTH SERVICES
Questions...most people with a lifelong illness have them. If you are the parent of a child with CF, very likely, you have questions too. Your questions are important, and your doctor can probably answer most of them. But some people's questions about CF do not get answered – but only because they are never asked!
Why Ask Questions?
People who ask questions usually get answers. Those who ask questions are likely to know more about their disease. They understand more about how their treatments are supposed to help them. People who ask questions often feel like more of a partner with their doctors too.
So, what keeps people from asking their questions?
Some people feel nervous in medical settings. They freeze and forget what they wanted to ask about. Others worry that their questions might seem "stupid" to the doctor. Some people have such high opinions of doctors that they believe they should not "question the doctor."
If you are one of these people, it is time to think again! Asking questions about CF is not only your right, but it is the right thing to do. This is especially true if you are caring for a child with CF. Any question is a "good" question if the answer will tell you what you need to know, or just want to know.
It is normal for CF patients and parents to have all types of questions. Here are some examples. As you read them, think about what you would like to ask your doctor.
Questions about how CF will affect your life
Questions about sensitive issues
(These questions may be the hardest to ask. Sometimes the best way to start is to say, "I need to ask you a question about something personal.")
Questions about education and support for CF
Make Three Lists
To get the most out of your time with the doctor, plan ahead. Make three lists:
List #1: Symptoms. If you are seeing the doctor because of a problem, write a list of your or your child's symptoms and answer these questions:
List #2: Questions. Put all your questions in writing.
List #3: Medicines. Make this list if you are seeing a doctor for the first time.
|Medication||Why I Take It||Dose||Times Per Day|
Note: Some doctors prefer that you put all your medicines in a bag and bring them to the appointment. Before you make your list, find out if this is what your doctor prefers.
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National Eye Institute web site. http://www.nei.nih.gov/health/talktodoc.asp. Accessed March 1, 2008.
MedLine Plus [Internet]. Bethesda, MD: National Library of Medicine (US); [updated 2008 March 3] talking with your doctor; [reviewed 2007 Sept 21; cited 2008 March 3]; [1 p]. Available from: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/talkingwithyourdoctor.html.
Lorig K, Fries JF. Working with your doctor: a joint venture. In: The Arthritis Helpbook. 6th ed. Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press;2006:303-312.
American Academy of Family Physicians Web site. http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/pat-advocacy/healthcare/837.html. Accessed March 1, 2008.
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Web site.http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/quicktips/doctalk.htm. Accessed March 1, 2008.
Barrett, Stephen. Doctor-patient communication. Quackwatch Web site. Available at: http://www.quackwatch.org/02ConsumerProtection/commtips.html. Revised October 9, 2006.Accessed April 17, 2008.
Last Modified Date: March 19, 2009 © Accordant Health Services, a CVS/Caremark company. All rights reserved.
This article has been reviewed for accuracy by a member of the Accordant Health Services Medical Advisory Team.
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