Questions to Ask Your Doctor When You Are Newly Diagnosed

It can often be very hard to know what to ask or even where to begin when you have questions during your first visit with a new doctor. Many of our chronic dry eye community members say they sometimes feel overwhelmed in these situations. Here's what you can do to make yourself feel more comfortable and in control of your health.

Organize your thoughts first

The doctor should ask if you have questions or concerns. But it can be impossible to ask a question if you do not know what you should be asking. Sometimes you may feel confused about where to even start. This is especially true if you have not found a diagnosis yet.

Here are some common questions that may help guide you during your first few appointments. These questions can be starting point to organize your thoughts before the visit.  Remember, you do not have to ask all of them.

  • What are my options for treatment and the pros and cons of each?
  • What are the potential side effects of my treatment options? Which side effects are more common and which ones are rare?
  • How are appointments, questions, and concerns handled?
  • What do I need to do to get my medication refills?
  • How often can I expect to be seen by the doctor for my condition? Will I always see the same doctor? Will I sometimes see a physician assistant or nurse practitioner?
  • How do I access my test and lab results?
  • Do I have to decide today on treatment or can I take some time to think it over?
  • What will happen if I choose not to treat my condition at this time?
  • Are there diet, exercise, or supplement changes you suggest I make?
  • If I have a question or concern between appointments, can I call the office, email, or send a message?

When you know the right questions to ask, it can be 1 step to help you better plan and prepare for your journey with chronic dry eye.

A new diagnosis can be scary

Being newly diagnosed with chronic dry eye can be scary, and it can be hard to know what to expect. At first, it can feel like you are learning a foreign language. Test results, drugs and other treatments, and side effects may be hard to understand. We hope these questions give you a solid starting point to help make sense of things.

What questions do you wish you had asked at those first appointments when you were newly diagnosed? Let us know in the comments!

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