Crisis Symptom Reporting Guide

When your loved one is in a medical crisis, your ability to observe symptoms carefully and report accurately might be, quite literally, lifesaving. But it is a challenge to function clearly in a time of crisis. Below is a list that will help you remember what to look for during a crisis. You may want to read it ahead of time, and then store a copy in your patient file for later reference.

  • What time did the problem start?
  • What was he/she doing when the problem began?
  • Do you know or suspect what might have caused the problem?
  • What was the first symptom that you noticed?
  • What other symptoms/complaints do you remember?
  • Did the symptoms come on abruptly or gradually?
  • Was he/she given any medication or medical treatment just before the problem started? If so, what was it?
  • Did the patient say anything about how he/she felt when the problem started and/or as it progressed? What was it?
  • Does he/she have a history of this kind of problem?
  • What did you do to try to help him/her between the time the problem arose and the time you arrived in the emergency room or the doctor’s office? Did something work well? Did something seem to make things worse?