You may first see your primary care doctor. However, you'll likely be sent to the hospital for immediate treatment. At the hospital, you'll probably also see a doctor who specializes in neurology (neurologist) or infectious diseases.
What you can do
- Bring any medications you take with you, and let your doctor know about any vitamins or supplements you're taking.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor. Although you may not have time to write down questions before your first appointment, write down any questions you want to ask at your follow-up appointments.
For botulism, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- How did I get botulism?
- Will I have any lasting problems?
- What side effects can I expect from treatment?
- Are there dietary restrictions I need to follow?
- How can I prevent this from happening again?
Don't hesitate to ask your doctor any other appropriate questions.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
June 13, 2015
- When did you begin having symptoms?
- Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
- Have you or your child eaten any canned food recently?
- If your infant is ill, has he or she consumed honey?
- Did anyone else eat the food suspected of making you ill?
- Pegram PS, et al. Botulism. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 5, 2015.
- Botulism. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/nczved/divisions/dfbmd/diseases/botulism/. Accessed May 7, 2015.
- Longo DL, et al.Botulism. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 18th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed May 5, 2015.
- Goldsmith LA, et al., eds. Botulinum toxin. In: Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed May 11, 2015.
- Chalk C, et al. Medical treatment for botulism. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD008123.pub3/abstract. Accessed May 11, 2015.
- Principles of home canning. National Center for Home Food Preservation. http://nchfp.uga.edu/publications/publications_usda.html. Accessed May 11, 2015.
- Rosow LK, et al. Infant botulism: Review and clinical update. Pediatric Neurology 2015;52:487.