Talking to Your Doctor About Cirrhosis
- Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and think of questions to ask.
- Write out your questions ahead of time, so you don't forget them.
- Write down the answers you get, and make sure you understand what you are hearing. Ask for clarification, if necessary.
- Don't be afraid to ask your questions or ask where you can find more information about what you are discussing. You have a right to know.
- What is cirrhosis?
- Based on my medical history, lifestyle, and family background, am I at risk for cirrhosis?
- How do I know if someone in my family had or has cirrhosis?
- What physical signs or symptoms should I be looking for?
- Am I currently taking any medicine that puts me at higher risk for developing cirrhosis?
- How do I best prevent cirrhosis?
- How do I know if I have cirrhosis?
- What is my best treatment option?
What medicines are available to help me?
- What are the benefits/side effects of these medicines?
- Will these medicines interact with other medicines, over-the-counter products, or dietary or herbal supplements I am already taking for other conditions?
- Are the medicines I am taking for other conditions safe to take now that I have cirrhosis?
- What surgical options other than transplant are there?
- Are there any alternative or complementary therapies that will help me?
- Is it safe to drink any alcohol?
- How much protein is enough?
- Is any vitamin/mineral supplement adequate?
- Should I reduce my salt intake?
- Can you recommend a registered dietitian to help me with my diet?
- If I have hepatitis, can I infect my family members?
- Should my family receive the hepatitis B vaccine or the hepatitis A vaccine?
- Do I need to practice safe sex with my marital partner? What risks are involved?
- How do I know that my prevention or treatment program is effective?
- Will you regularly monitor my liver enzymes?
- Can you recommend a support group?
- Will I need a liver transplant?
- Can the medicines I get after liver transplants can harm?
- What is my one-year outlook? Five-year?
Tips for talking to your doctor. Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/healthcare-management/working-with-your-doctor/tips-for-talking-to-your-doctor.html. Updated November 2010. Accessed April 24, 2013.
- Reviewer: Daus Mahnke, MD
- Review Date: 03/2015 -
- Update Date: 03/15/2015 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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