Preparing for your appointmentBy Mayo Clinic staff
Your symptoms may prompt you to make an appointment with your family doctor or general practitioner. You may be referred to a doctor who specializes in disorders of the eyes (ophthalmologist).
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment, and know what to expect from your doctor.
What you can do
- Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.
- Write down key personal information, including any major illnesses, traumas or recent life changes.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins or supplements that you're taking.
- Ask a family member or friend to come with you. Sometimes it can be difficult to remember all of the information provided during an appointment. Someone who accompanies you may remember something that you missed or forgot. Additionally, someone who comes with you can drive you to your appointment, especially if your symptoms make it difficult to see properly.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
Preparing a list of questions can help cover all of the points that are important to you. For uveitis, some basic questions to ask include:
- What's the most likely cause of my eye problems?
- Are there other possible causes for my symptoms?
- What kinds of tests do I need? Do these tests require any special preparation?
- Is uveitis temporary or long lasting?
- Will I lose my sight?
- What treatments are available, and which do you recommend?
- What types of side effects can I expect from treatment?
- Is there anything I can do to prevent this from happening again?
- I have another health condition. How can I best manage these conditions together?
- Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can take home with me? What websites do you recommend?
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
- When did you first begin experiencing symptoms?
- Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
- How severe are your symptoms? Have they gotten worse?
- Does anything seem to improve your symptoms?
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
- Have you ever had uveitis before?
- Do you have any other medical problems?
- Do you have arthritis?
- Do you have back problems?
- Have you had any recent skin rashes?
- Have you had any ulcerated sores in your mouth or on your genitalia?
- Have you had a recent upper respiratory infection or cold symptoms?
- Riordan-Eva P, et al. Vaughan & Asbury's General Ophthalmology. 18th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=720. Accessed March 4, 2012.
- Rosenbaum JT. Uveitis: Etiology; clinical manifestations; and diagnosis. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed March 7, 2012.
- Rosenbaum JT. Uveitis: Treatment. http://www.uptodate.com/ index. Accessed March 7, 2012.
- Cunningham ET. Uveitis. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/print/sec09/ch105/ch105a.html. Accessed March 21, 2012.
- De Smet MD, et al. Understanding uveitis: The impact of research on visual outcomes. Progress in Retinal and Eye Research. 2011;30:452.
- Robertson DM (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 30, 2012.