How to get the most out of your OB/GYN appointment
March 17, 2014
Unless you are having a baby, seeing an OB/GYN often makes women feel very nervous. This can lead to forgetting questions, forgetting important information about your condition and leaving feeling dissatisfied.
In order to get the most out of your appointment here are some simple tips:
1. Come prepared!
- Bring a list of your medications; this can help us be sure that anything we prescribe will be safe for you. Your problem may also be related to your medication – for example, blood thinners can cause heavy periods.
- Know your family history. Things that are important for OB/GYNs to know include family member with blood clots, recurrent (more than three) miscarriages, family members with cancer of the breast, ovary, uterus or colon (bowel). It is also helpful to know the age they were diagnosed.
- Bring a list of questions! The more you ask, the more you’ll know. We want our patients to be well informed so that we can help you make the right treatment plan for you. Also, there may not be time to go over everything in one appointment so make sure you start with what is important to you.
2. Check your inhibitions at the door!
- Trust me, we have seen and heard everything and there is very little than can shock us! It is important that you are open and honest so that we can make sure we understand exactly what is going on to come up with the right diagnosis.
- It is likely that we are going to have to ask personal questions related to your sexual activity, pregnancy history and any STDs. If you don’t want someone to know this information, ask them to wait in the waiting room or send us a message before your appointment.
3. Do research … just do it in the right place!
- www.acog.org has patient information leaflets about a wide range of health problems that you can download or print. health.nih.gov is also a great resource. This is information that is reviewed by a health care provider to ensure that it is accurate and up to date.
4. Be your own advocate.
- It is your health and your decision. If you don’t feel comfortable with a treatment option let us know, there are often multiple options available. And if your doctor cannot perform a certain procedure, they should refer you to someone who can.
If you have concerns or questions after your visit, please let us know. Don’t wait until your follow up visit in three months, we are here for you!
- Don’t be afraid to find a new provider. Sometimes you just don’t ‘click’ with someone and that is okay! This is a very sensitive area, and you need to be comfortable with your provider. Ask friends and family for a referral, or check out our website - there are lots of great providers at Swedish, and you can be sure to find one you get on well with.