What to Do After Diagnosis
Dealing with Immediate Needs (Next Steps)
The most important thing to learn is “what do I need to know to take care of my child in the immediate future?” Our care team has a lot of information for our families – work with them to focus on the key takeaways. Don’t try to understand everything the first day.
Seeking a Second Opinion
Determining what to do when your child has been diagnosed with an illness is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make. It’s natural to want to be sure that the diagnosis is accurate and that any proposed course of treatment is appropriate. A second opinion is a consultation with a second doctor to confirm a diagnosis or treatment recommendation.
Understanding the Diagnosis
The main thing to focus on at the time of diagnosis is what we call your “need to know” information. Take some deep breaths and identify what you need to know about the diagnosis to help your child at that moment and throughout the short-term future.
Talking to Your Child
It’s natural to experience a range of emotions upon learning that your child has an illness or may need surgery. You may not be certain when to begin talking to your child about a hospitalization or diagnosis. The timing of that conversation, as well as your child’s reactions and needs, will depend on the child’s age, personality, and prior experiences.
Choosing a Provider / Deciding on Care
Deciding who to turn to for your child’s medical care is one of a parent’s most important responsibilities. Children’s Health℠ is committed to providing the very best care for your family, and supporting you in making the many important choices along the way. We think it’s important that you have easy access to information about your child’s condition and helpful guides for assessing the quality of care your family receives.
First, understand that it’s normal to feel shock, anger, guilt, helplessness, sadness, and anxiety after learning of your child’s diagnosis. It’s important to recognize that these emotions are a natural part of the adjustment process.
Continue to Educate Yourself
Children’s Health has on-campus libraries in both Dallas and Plano so our families have ready access to the information they need about their child’s condition. Our Family Resource Libraries have staff librarians to assist your search for information.