Preparing for your appointment

By Mayo Clinic Staff

You may start by seeing your primary care physician. However, you may then be referred to a doctor who specializes in skin disorders (dermatologist).

Because appointments can be brief, and there's often a lot of ground to cover, it's a good idea to arrive well prepared. Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment, and what to expect from your doctor.

What you can do

  • 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 any major stresses or recent life changes.
  • Make a list of all medications, vitamins or supplements you're taking.
  • Write down questions to ask your doctor.

Your time with your doctor is limited, so preparing a list of questions can help you make the most of your time together. For neurodermatitis, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:

  • What's the most likely cause of my itching?
  • Are there other possible causes?
  • Do I need any tests?
  • Will the itching ever stop?
  • What treatments are available, and which do you recommend?
  • What side effects can I expect from treatment?
  • Are there any alternatives to the primary approach that you're suggesting?
  • How long will it take for my skin to return to normal?
  • I have other health conditions. How can I best manage these conditions together?

What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions. Being ready to answer them may reserve time to go over any points you want to spend more time on. Your doctor may ask:

  • When did your symptoms start?
  • Have your symptoms been continuous, or do they come and go?
  • What steps have you taken on your own to manage the itchiness?
  • Have any of these measures helped
Oct. 02, 2012