Bringing a Family Member to a Doctor Appointment

A cancer diagnosis is an overwhelming, life-changing, disruptive event in the life of anyone. When a patient goes to meet their doctor, they are usually stressed, anxious and afraid. Therefore, it is helpful and advisable for them to have a family member with them to take notes, record the conversation, ask questions and basically monitor the appointment and keep track of what transpired. The patient can then talk over the appointment touch points with the family member after the fact.

Also, the family member can either confirm or elaborate on the discussion with the doctor. It is often difficult for the patient to remember events or details when asked questions about side-effects, coping with their illness, day-to-day regimen and mental attitude. A family member can help provide these details and can add validity.

It is helpful to prepare for a doctor appointment by making a list of questions to ask and a list of events or topics to talk about. A family member can help with this and even record the conversation if that is necessary.

Make the very most of your doctor appointments by asking a family member to accompany you!

Watch the following video as Dr. Malcolm DeCamp of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center explains why bringing a family member to a doctor appointment is a great idea.

Bring a Family Member to Your Doctor Appointment from Patient Empowerment Network on Vimeo.