The Most Common Things Patients Forget to Bring Up
Typical oversights tend to be how a patient's health or their family's health has changed since their last appointment; new medication (herbal remedies count, too); or whether any close blood relatives, including paternal ones, have developed breast or ovarian cancer.
Reasons to talk about this: Think beyond your lady parts and jog your memory for medical issues, says Michele Curtis, MD, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Texas at Houston. She recently had a patient who came to see her about breakthrough bleeding but neglected to mention that she'd been diagnosed with thyroid problems—which are commonly associated with irregular periods. If Curtis learns about new cases of cancer in the family, she may offer BRCA1 or BRCA2 genetic testing or other screening measures to make sure she helps catch problems as early as possible. Err on the side of oversharing and let your doctor tell you what's irrelevant.