Preparing for your appointmentBy Mayo Clinic staff
If you've just learned your child has microcephaly or you suspect that your child's head is too small, you're likely to start by seeing your pediatrician. However, in some cases, your pediatrician may refer you to a pediatric neurologist.
It's a good idea to prepare for your appointment. Here's some information to help you.
What you can do
- Write down any concerns you have about your child, including any regarding small head size or delayed developmental markers. If you're worried about your child's head size, try to get the hat sizes or measure the head circumference of as many first-degree relatives, such as parents and siblings, as possible for comparison.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Sometimes it can be difficult to remember all of the information you get during an appointment. Someone who accompanies you may remember something that you missed or forgot.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
Preparing a list of questions for your doctor will help you make the most of your time together. List your questions from most important to least important. For microcephaly, some basic questions to ask your doctor might include:
- What's the most likely cause of my child's condition?
- Does my child need any additional tests? If so, do these tests require any special preparation?
- What treatments are available?
- What course of action do you think is best for my child?
- Is there a treatment that will return my child's head to a normal size?
- If I have additional children, what are the chances that they will have microcephaly?
- Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can take home with me? What websites do you recommend?
- Hay WW,.et al. Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Pediatrics. 20th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=6585048. Accessed April 8, 2012.
- NINDS microcephaly information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/microcephaly/microcephaly.htm. Accessed April 8, 2012.
- Boom JA. Etiology and evaluation of microcephaly in infants. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed April 8, 2012.
- Hoecker JL (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 10, 2012.