Be Prepared: Tips for a Productive Appointment With Your Doctor

The key to a productive appointment is preparing for it. Whether you only suspect you have neurogenic orthostatic hypotension (nOH) or have already been diagnosed, there are several things you can do ahead of time to make the most of your visit to the doctor.

Doug,

lives with multiple system atrophy (MSA) and nOH

If You Think You May Have nOH:

  • Use our Symptom Checker to see which symptoms of nOH you may be experiencing when standing or changing positions. Then print your results, and use them as a guide to start a discussion with your doctor.
  • Blood pressure readings in different positions are very important, so remember to ask your doctor to check your blood pressure and heart rate when you are lying down, sitting, and then standing.

If You’ve Been Diagnosed With nOH:

  • Be sure to use a tracker to record your blood pressure readings and symptoms in between appointments. Always take this information with you when you see your doctor.
  • Write down any questions you may want to ask beforehand. Think about all the aspects of your management plan—medicine, exercise, diet—and talk with your doctor about what is and isn’t working, and what you might be able to change. Always check with him or her before making any adjustments to your plan.

Talking With Your Doctor

The most important thing you can do at an appointment is to be honest with your doctor and tell him or her about any changes or concerns since your last conversation. Watch Dr. Fahd Amjad, a movement disorder specialist, explain why open communication is so important.

The most important thing you can do at an appointment is to be honest with your doctor and tell him or her about any changes or concerns since your last conversation. Watch Dr. Fahd Amjad, a movement disorder specialist, explain why open communication is so important.

Don’t Go It Alone

Whether it’s your first or fifteenth time seeing your doctor, it always helps to bring someone with you. Watch as Danny, care partner to Doug, talks about the role he plays at Doug’s appointments.

Whether it’s your first or fifteenth time seeing your doctor, it always helps to bring someone with you. Watch as Danny, care partner to Doug, talks about the role he plays at Doug’s appointments.

Remember, you are an important part of your healthcare team! It’s important to continue monitoring symptoms and blood pressure readings after every appointment so you can share this information with your doctor. You can find an nOH symptom tracker and other helpful resources here.