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Questions To Ask Your Doctor

Whether it is your first or 50th time visiting your doctor, you should make sure you understand the information he or she tells you. Have your doctor break it down to you, and then explain it back to make sure that you get it. Take notes if you need to, or have someone you trust accompany you to the visit. And make sure that person understands the information too.

You should ask:

  • What is my main problem?
  • What do I need to do?
  • Why is it important for me to do this?
  • Do I need more tests? What will the results tell me?
  • How often should I be seen?
  • How do I reach you in an emergency?

If you are given a prescription, you should ask:
  • What are the brand and generic names for this medication?
  • What is it being given for?
  • How often should I take it? At what times?
  • Should I take this medication every day?
  • Should I take this medication with food? Are there any foods I should avoid while taking this medication?
  • Can it be taken with other medications? At the same time?
  • What should I look for to know if it is working or giving me any side effects?
  • Is there anything cheaper or generic? Ask this question if cost is an issue for you.

To view some commonly asked questions for before, during or after your appointment, visit the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality website.

You can also create your own personalized list of questions that address your specific needs. Use the Question Builder to create your personalized list of questions.

Hear from patients, like you, and doctors about the importance of asking your doctor questions. Click here to watch patient and doctor video.