If you've just learned your child has microcephaly or you suspect your child's head is too small, you're likely to start by seeing your pediatrician. However, in some cases, your pediatrician may refer you to a pediatric neurologist.
Here's some information to help you prepare for your appointment.
What you can do
- Write down your concerns about your child, including those regarding small head size or delayed development. If you're worried about your child's head size, try to get the hat sizes or measure the head circumference of as many first-degree relatives, such as parents and siblings, as possible for comparison.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Someone who accompanies you can help you remember information you get from your doctor.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
For microcephaly, some basic questions to ask your doctor might include:
April 25, 2015
- What's the most likely cause of my child's condition?
- Does my child need additional tests? If so, do these tests require special preparation?
- What treatments are available?
- What course of action do you think is best for my child?
- Is there a treatment that will return my child's head to a normal size?
- If I have additional children, what are the chances they'll have microcephaly?
- Are there brochures or other printed material that I can have? What websites do you recommend?
- Hay WW, et al. Neurological assessment and neurodiagnostics. In: Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Pediatrics. 22nd ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill Education; 2014. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Feb. 18, 2015.
- Boom JA. Microcephaly in infants: Etiology and evaluation. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 18, 2015.
- NINDS microcephaly information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/microcephaly/microcephaly.htm. Accessed Feb. 18, 2015.
- Hoecker JL (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Feb. 20, 2015.