Talking to Your Healthcare Provider About Hyperthyroidism
You have a unique medical history. Therefore, it is essential to talk with your doctor or healthcare provider about your personal risk factors and/or experience with hyperthyroidism. By talking openly and regularly with your healthcare provider, you can take an active role in your care.
General Tips for Gathering Information
Here are some tips that will make it easier for you to talk to your healthcare provider:
- 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.
Specific Questions to Ask Your Healthcare Provider
About Other Medical Problems
- How will hyperthyroidism and its treatment affect other medications I am taking, including over-the-counter medications and herbs?
- How will hyperthyroidism and its treatment affect pregnancy and breastfeeding?
- What are the chances that my children wil get this condition?
About Your Risk of Developing Hypothyroidism
- What is the risk of developing hypothyroidism with each of the treatment options?
About Treatment Options
- What are the pros and cons of antithyroid medications, radioactive iodine treatment, and surgery?
- What are the cure rates associated with each of these treatments?
- What are the benefits and side effects?
- How soon after I begin treatment can I expect to have a normal level of thyroid hormone?
- What is the possibility of my thyroid returning to normal function and then becoming overactive again with each of the treatment options?
- How often do I need to be seen for follow-up care after my thyroid hormone level is normal?
American Thyroid Association website. Available at: http://www.thyroid.org/ .
Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. 10th ed. McGraw-Hill; 2001.
Pearce EN. Diagnosis and management of thyrotoxicosis. Brit Med J. 2006;332:1369-1373.
Last reviewed November 2008 by ]]>David Juan, MD]]>
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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