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Infantile spasms awareness week
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What is Infantile Spasms

How to Prepare for Your Doctor's Visit

To better manage all the information and details surrounding the care of your baby, here are some suggestions you can use to prepare for your doctor's visit. These suggestions will help your doctor treat your baby and help you keep track of the information your doctor and other healthcare providers give you.
    Start a file that could contain the following:
    1. Insurance card with policy numbers including contact information (primary and secondary insurance)

    2. Your baby's birth history (weight and length at birth and anything unusual that occurred)

    3. Write down if your baby has any known allergies to any food(s), medication(s), animal(s), pollens/grass, or anything

    4. Write down any history of stroke/seizures/epilepsy in the family (for both parents' families and include grandparents, aunts/uncles, and cousins) and provide as many details as possible

    5. Write down your baby's key milestones such as when your baby rolled over, began to scoot, began to "pull-up" on furniture, began to crawl, and took his/her first step(s); also write details and dates if your baby has begun trying to talk (this includes cooing and baby talk), as well as his/her first words
    • Be detailed. Note when the baby's firsts took place and compare them to the baby's progress at the time of the visit. This will help the doctor determine if your baby is developing normally or if there is delay or backward movement.

    6. Make a list of key contact information and notes:
    • When you meet healthcare providers involved in your baby's care, write their names and titles (doctor, pediatrician, RN, nurse, case manager), their roles in your baby's care, and their phone numbers and e-mail addresses (this includes office managers and hospital administrative staff for billing)
    • Write down insurance phone numbers and addresses

    7. Write down all the medications (prescription and over-the-counter) your baby takes including vitamins, and don't forget the dosage and how it is given.

    8. Complete the My Epilepsy Diary from epilepsy.com.

    9. If you have videos of the spasms bring them with you. (You can use your phone or your video recorder to record the events)

    10. To help you stay organized, as you leave the doctor's office, you might want to keep separate files of all prescriptions, referrals, and other important papers, and place them in a folder. In addition, write a summary of your visit with the baby's doctor and write notes on referrals given, prescriptions, orders for lab tests, and any other items.
Important Notes:
  • Make all appointments as soon as possible
  • You may need to contact your insurance company about certain referrals and prescriptions or to notify them of the need for ongoing care (refer to your policy and insurance provider's website for guidance--if you have a computer, put your insurance provider's website under your Favorites list for easy access)
  • As an organizing tip, put a pocket calendar in your folder to track appointments