Getting the most from your PH appointments
People with pulmonary hypertension (PH) are treated at one of nine PH specialist centres in the UK or Ireland. If you have PH, you may only visit the clinic once or twice a year. This means it’s important to make the most of your visit. Your visits to the PH clinic ensure that your symptoms are controlled adequately and you are getting the best treatment possible. They are also a chance for you to ask any questions, or discuss any concerns you have.
Tips on how to get the most out of your PH clinic visit
- Make a note of any changes to your PH or symptoms before your visit (it’s sometimes a good idea to keep a diary of these changes).
- Take a pen and paper to note down important information or the answers to your questions. You might want to note down important information. If you are interested, you can ask for copies of your clinic letters to be kept on file. Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor to explain further if you don’t understand something.
- Wear comfortable clothes and footwear. It is likely that you will be doing some form of walking test, so wearing flat shoes or footwear you would normally wear day-to-day is a good idea.
- Tell your PH specialist about any non-prescription medicines or herbal supplements you are taking. This includes food and herbal supplements. This is important because some of these medicines may interfere with the drugs you are taking for PH. Don’t be embarrassed about talking about any nonprescription and supplementary medicines you are taking. It will ensure that no problems can develop at a later stage.
- If you can, take a friend or relative along for support. They may be able to help if you are struggling to take all the information in.
Questions you might want to ask during your visit to the PH clinic
- What are my treatment options?
- How effective is the treatment?
- What are the side effects of this treatment?
- Why do I need the test?
- What do the test results mean?
Remember: Don’t be afraid to tell your PH team about any concerns or fears. They are there to help and make a positive difference in your life.