You're likely to start by seeing your family doctor, a general practitioner or a pediatrician. You may be referred to a doctor specializing in disorders of the ear, nose and throat (otorhinolaryngologist).
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment, and to know what to expect from your doctor.
What you can do
- Be aware of any preappointment restrictions. When you make the appointment, ask if there's anything you need to do in advance.
- Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.
- Write down key personal information, including major stresses or recent life changes.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins and supplements you're taking.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Someone who accompanies you may remember information you missed or forgot.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
Preparing a list of questions will help you make the most of your time with your doctor. For laryngitis, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- What is likely causing my symptoms or condition?
- What are other possible causes?
- What tests do I need, if any?
- Is my condition likely temporary or chronic?
- What is the best course of action?
- 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 any restrictions I need to follow?
- Should I see a subspecialist?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing?
- Are there brochures or other printed material I can take home? What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask any other questions.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
April 21, 2015
- When did you begin experiencing symptoms?
- 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?
- Do you smoke?
- Do you drink alcohol?
- Do you have allergies? Have you recently had a cold?
- Have you recently overused your vocal cords, such as by singing or shouting?
- Taking care of your voice. National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/voice/pages/takingcare.aspx. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Bruch, JM et al. Hoarseness in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Ferri FF. Laryngitis. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2015: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2015. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Laryngitis. The Merck Manual Professional Edition. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/ear_nose_and_throat_disorders/laryngeal_disorders/laryngitis.html?qt=laryngitis&alt=sh. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Fact sheet: Common problems that can affect your voice. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/content/common-problems-can-affect-your-voice. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Fact sheet: The voice and aging. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/content/voice-and-aging. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Kahrilas PJ. Complications of gastroesophageal reflux in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Laryngitis. ExitCare. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier, Inc.; 2015. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Apr. 7, 2015.
- Croup. The Merck Manual Professional Edition. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/pediatrics/respiratory_disorders_in_young_children/croup.html?qt=croup&alt=sh. Accessed April 7, 2015.
- Hoecker JL (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 7, 2015.