You're likely to start by seeing your family doctor or a general practitioner. However, in some cases when you call to set up an appointment you may be referred to a specialist called an endocrinologist.
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.
What you can do
- Be aware of any pre-appointment restrictions. At the time you make the appointment, be sure to ask if there's anything you need to do in advance. Your doctor may ask you to stop drinking water the night before — do so only if your doctor asks you to.
- Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment. Be prepared to answer specific questions about how often you urinate and how much water you drink each day.
- Write down key personal information, including any major stresses or recent life changes.
- Make a list of your key medical information, including recent surgical procedures, the names of all medications you're taking and any other conditions for which you've recently been treated. Your doctor will also want to know about any recent injuries to your head.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Sometimes it can be difficult to soak up all the information provided to you during an appointment. Someone who accompanies you may remember something that you missed or forgot.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
For diabetes insipidus, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- What is likely causing my symptoms or condition?
- What other possible causes are there?
- What kinds of tests do I need?
- Is my condition likely temporary or chronic?
- What is the best course of action?
- How will you monitor whether my treatment is working?
- Will I need to make any changes to my diet or lifestyle?
- Will I still need to drink a lot of water if I'm taking medications?
- I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
- Are there any restrictions I need to follow?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing?
- Are there brochures or other printed material I can take home or websites you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask questions during your appointment.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, including:
- When did you begin experiencing symptoms?
- How much more are you urinating than usual?
- How much water do you drink each day?
- Do you get up at night to urinate and drink water?
- Are you pregnant?
- Are you being treated or have you recently been treated for other medical conditions?
- Have you had any recent head injuries or have you had neurosurgery?
- Has anyone in your family been diagnosed with diabetes insipidus?
- What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms?
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
What you can do in the meantime
While you're waiting for your appointment, drink until your thirst is relieved, as often as necessary. Avoid activities that might cause dehydration, such as physical exertion or spending time in the heat.
March 14, 2013
- Diabetes insipidus. National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/insipidus/. Accessed Dec. 4, 2012.
- Kronenberg HM, et al. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 12th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191205553-3/0/1555/0.html#. Accessed Dec. 4, 2012.
- Diabetes insipidus. National Institutes of Health Clinical Center. http://www.cc.nih.gov/ccc/patient_education/pepubs/di.pdf. Accessed Dec. 4, 2012.
- Papadakis MA, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2013. 52nd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2013. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=1. Accessed Dec. 4, 2012.
- Di Iorgi N, et al. Diabetes insipidus Diagnosis and management. Hormone Research in Paediatrics. 2012;77:69.
- Goldman L, et al. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191371208-2/0/1492/0.html#. Accessed Dec. 4, 2012.
- Gardner DG, et al. Greenspan's Basic & Clinical Endocrinology. 9th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=13. Accessed Dec. 4, 2012.
- Halter JB, et al. Hazzard's Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology. 6th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2009. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=540. Accessed Dec. 6, 2012.
- Bichet DG. Treatment of nephrogenic diabetes insipidus. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index. Accessed Dec. 6, 2012.
- Nippoldt TB (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dec. 17, 2012.
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