Skip to main content
Tulane Home Tulane Home

Patient Education

One way you can make sure you get good quality health care is to be an active member of your health care team. Patients who talk with their doctors tend to be happier with their care and have better medical results. 

Symptom Checker ▾

Sometimes you can treat common health problems with self-care. Sometimes you need medical help. Check out these resources:

Learn about other common health problems, what you can do to help prevent getting them, and what to do when you have one of them.

Not sure about a symptom? Call the Nurse Advice Line.

Before you begin surfing the web for medical information and resources, please visit the National Institutes of Health webpage “MedlinePlus Guide to Healthy Web Surfing” which provides great tips on web surfing: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/healthywebsurfing.html

How to schedule an appointment ▾

Do I need an appointment? If you're not sure, call for advice from a nurse.

Learn about what type of care you need:

Checklist 1 - Before you call or see a doctor

  • Your signs and symptoms (in the order they occurred and what makes them better or worse).
  • Results of home testing, such as your temperature.
  • Medicines you take (prescribed, over-the-counter, herbal products, vitamins, etc.).
  • Allergies to medicines, food, etc..
  • Family and personal medical history.
  • Your lifestyle: Eating, drinking, sleeping, exercising habits, sexual habits, drug use, etc.
  • Concerns you have about your health and/or what you think the problem may be due to.
  • What you would like the doctor to do for you.
  • Your pharmacist’s phone number and fax number.

{Note: If needed, have your medical records, results of lab tests and X-rays, etc. from other health care providers sent to your doctor before your visit.} 

Schedule an Appointment

 

 

Prepare for health care visits ▾

Checklist 2

Your appointment

During the doctor visit

Tell the doctor what you wrote down in Checklist 1. (Take the list with you.) Ask your doctor these questions:

  • What do you think the problem or diagnosis is?
  • What, if any, tests are needed to rule out or confirm your diagnosis?
  • What do I need to do to treat the problem? Do I need to take medicine? How can I prevent the problem in the future?
  • When do I need to call or see you again?
  • How are costs handled for this visit and for tests?
After your health care visit ▾
  • Follow your doctor’s advice.
  • Call the doctor’s office if you don’t understand his or her instructions.
  • Tell your doctor if you feel worse, have other problems or side effects from any medicines, etc.
  • Keep return visit appointments.

Additional Resources

Be More Involved in Your Health Care: Tips to use before, during, and after your medical appointment to make sure you get the best possible care.

Learn more about immunizations and vaccines

Immunizations for College Students

Vaccine Information for Adults