For your first appointment, it’s important to come prepared with questions to ask your primary care doctor or gynecologist about uterine fibroids. You should walk in feeling confident about what you need to know and leave feeling equally as confident about the answers given to your questions.
Information on uterine fibroids, however, often misrepresents the full scope of the condition and can be confusing and/or contradictory. So, how do you know what questions to ask your doctor about fibroids?
Before your appointment
- Write down any symptoms you’re experiencing, even if you’re unsure whether or not they are related to fibroids.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins, and/or herbs you are currently taking—including dose and frequency.
- Find a family member or friend who can go with you. While it may feel uncomfortable to have someone else there, you’ll likely be given a lot of information, and it will be helpful to have another person there to keep track of it all.
- Grab a pen and notebook or an electronic device that you feel comfortable taking notes on, so you have somewhere to write things down during your appointment.
- Prepare a list of questions to ask your doctor, and make sure to list the most important questions first in case you run out of time.
Questions your doctor may ask you
You will have a lot of questions—but so will they. Here is a list of questions that your doctor may ask you at your first appointment:
- How often do your symptoms occur?
- How long have you been experiencing symptoms?
- How severe are your symptoms?
- Do you feel like your symptoms are linked to your menstrual cycle?
- Is there anything that makes your symptoms better?
- Is there anything that makes your symptoms worse?
- Do you have a family history of fibroids?
What questions to ask your doctor
The following is a list of questions to ask your doctor at your first appointment:
- How many fibroids do I have, and what size is/are my fibroid(s)?
- Where is my fibroid(s) located (outer surface, inner surface, or in the wall of the uterus)?
- Can I expect my fibroid(s) to grow larger?
- How will I know if they’re growing? How will I know if they’re shrinking?
- What kinds of tests do I need?
- What other problems can fibroid(s) cause?
- What tests or imaging studies are best for tracking fibroid growth?
- What are the treatment options for fibroids?
- What medications are available to treat uterine fibroids or my symptoms, and what side effects can they have?
- What are your views on treating fibroids with a hysterectomy versus other types of treatments?
- How long will it take to recover from the different types of procedures, and what type of symptoms are expected while recovering?
- Under what circumstances do you recommend surgery?
- Do I need treatment? If so, what’s the best treatment option for me personally?
- What will happen if I don’t have treatment?
- Will my uterine fibroids affect my ability to become pregnant?
- Can the treatment of uterine fibroids improve my fertility?
During your appointment
Don’t hesitate to ask if you miss the answer to a question, need the doctor to repeat something, or want further explanation. You need to understand the information you’re being told. Moreover, remember to ask your doctor how you can reach them or who to contact if you have follow-up questions or concerns after your appointment.