If you think you have aortic valve stenosis, make an appointment to see your doctor. Here's some information to help you prepare for your appointment.
What you can do
- Be aware of pre-appointment restrictions. When you make the appointment, ask if there's anything you need to do beforehand.
- Write down your symptoms, including any that seem unrelated to heart valve disease.
- Write down key personal information, including a family history of heart disease, and any major stresses or recent life changes.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins and supplements you take.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Someone who accompanies you can help you remember information you receive.
- Be prepared to discuss your diet and exercise habits. If you don't already eat well and exercise, be ready to talk to your doctor about challenges you might face in getting started.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
For aortic valve stenosis, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- What is likely causing my symptoms or condition?
- What are other possible causes for my symptoms or condition?
- What tests will I need?
- What's the best treatment?
- What are the alternatives to the primary approach you're suggesting?
- I have other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
- Are there restrictions I need to follow?
- Should I see a specialist?
- If I need surgery, which surgeon do you recommend for heart valve surgery?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing?
- Are there brochures or other printed material I can take with me? What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask other questions you have.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, including:
- When did your symptoms begin?
- Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
- How severe are your symptoms?
- What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms?
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
Aug. 17, 2017
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- What is heart valve disease? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/hvd. Accessed March 7, 2017.
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- How can I make my lifestyle healthier? American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/ToolsForYourHeartHealth/Answers-by-Heart-Fact-Sheets-Lifestyle-and-Risk-Reduction_UCM_300611_Article.jsp#.WC9socnFjVY. Accessed March 10, 2017.
- Daniels BK. Echo Information Management System. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 18, 2016.
- Clavel MA, et al. The complex nature of discordant severe calcified aortic valve disease grading: New insights from combined Doppler echocardiographic and computed tomographic study. Journal of the American College of Cardiology. 2013;62:2329.
- Riggin EA. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 14, 2017.
- Mankad R (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 27, 2017.
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