You should start by seeing your primary care physician (PCP). Although, when you call to schedule an appointment, you may be referred to a specialist in skin disease (dermatologist).
In many cases your appointment may be brief, because there is a lot to cover. You should be well prepared for your appointment. Here is some FYI to help you get ready for your appointment, and what to expect from your doctor.
Write down all your signs and symptoms, and when your symptoms started. Document how long the lesions lasted, and when they reoccurred.
Make a list of all medications, including vitamins, over-the-counter medications, holistic and herbal remedies. Make sure you write down the dosages and directions. You can also retrieve your prescription list from your pharmacy. It’s not necessary to bring your bottles (keep a copy for your own records).
You may want to bring a family member or friend. This person may remember something you forgot or missed. (It is a lot to absorb)
Write down questions you want to ask your doctor. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or speak up when you don’t understand something your doctor says. Start with problems that concern you most. If you still feel unclear ask to speak to a nurse, doctor’s assistant or you can leave a message for the doctor to call you back.
If you have symptoms of hidradenitis suppurativa, your questions may include:
What is causing my symptoms?
What are other possible causes for my symptoms?
What test can be done to confirm the diagnosis?
Is this condition temporary or permanent?
What is my best course of action?
What are my treatment options?
What if the signs and symptoms go away?
Is this condition hereditary?
Do you have any literature on this condition? Is there a website you can recommend where I can learn more?
If you have additional questions that are not in our prepared list, don’t hesitate to ask during your appointment.
What to Expect From Your Doctor
Your doctor will ask you many questions to help rule out or diagnose your condition.
How long have you had this condition?
When did your symptoms start
Are your experiencing any pain? On a scale of 1 to 10 rate your pain level?
Have your symptoms ever gone away? If so, how long were they in remission?
Are you taking medication?
Have you ever taken any medication?
Have you ever been referred to see a dermatologist?
Have you ever seen a nutritionist?
I hope this FYI proves helpful during your next doctor’s visit.