A heart disease diagnosis can be scary and overwhelming. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with heart disease recently, you want to make sure you have access to all the information you need to keep yourself as healthy as possible moving forward.
Since it’s not uncommon to get flustered and anxious during an appointment, coming prepared with a list of questions can help you make the most of your face-to-face time with your doctor. Here are the top five questions you should cover during your appointment.
1. What caused these problems?
Heart disease can occur in patients for a number of different reasons. Understanding the unique history that led to your diagnosis can help provide perspective on how your lifestyle habits or family history may have played a contributing role in your current health.
2. How severe is the problem?
Heart disease is a serious diagnosis, so asking your doctor to explain exactly how severe your condition is and what other health problems you are at risk of experiencing is important knowledge to have. It may be difficult to hear the answer, but a clear understanding of the severity of your heart disease can help you make changes.
3. What is my treatment plan?
You want to leave your appointment with a clear plan of action. Heart disease may be a scary diagnosis, but it is very manageable and treatable. Talk to your doctor about what kind of treatment you need, how often you need to return for appointments and whether you should look into a cardio rehab program.
4. Do I need to change my lifestyle?
Your doctor might recommend a different diet or exercise plan to help strengthen your heart and reduce your chances of a cardiac episode. You also should discuss how your diagnosis affects your daily activities, like your job and sex life. Minimizing stress is important for the health of your heart, so go over what you can do to live your healthiest life.
5. What symptoms should I watch out for?
Heart disease can put you at risk for additional heart problems, so you’ll want to know what symptoms to be on the alert for and what to do if you begin to experience them. Knowing what is and isn’t cause for concern can help you get back to living your life with as little stress as possible.
Add other questions you may have to your list before meeting with your doctor. Going into your appointment prepared can get you on the right path to a healthy future.