Just remember that the doctor is part of your health care team. His or her only goal is to make your health better. In order to do this, the cardiologist must know what your health care worries are.
You can help by organizing your thoughts and records, and by being prepared for the questions that you will be asked.
Prepared patients are more able to get all of their concerns answered on the first visit, while unprepared patients often leave with many more questions than they came in with.
In my experience as a consultant, most often little information has been communicated by the referring physician before the consultation visit (often in a hospital hallway, or rushed telephone conversation, and in general terms with no name given).
Often a patient will perceive the reason for the consultation as for a different purpose than the original reason of the referring physician.
A critical question will relate to the reason for which you made the appointment. Focus on this problem will permit the cardiologist to answer the questions properly. Often, patients blurt out a partial history, but don’t tell me that their underlying concerns relate to worry about a stroke or cancer rather than the left shoulder pain for which the patient originally made the appointment.
If I am unaware of the patient's concern, I may focus on the shoulder and not understand that the concerns are elsewhere and the patient misses out at a chance to have the concern answered.
With respect to the chief reason for the visit you will be asked to describe the problem.
Often the cardiologist has a form that you can obtain before the visit to help identify the questions that you will be asked.
No one has all the answers at the beginning, so it is useful to involve your spouse, family or friends to help you remember things like your previous surgeries, and illnesses that may influence your health.