It is best if the history can be obtained from the child. However, in small children this is not possible and the history is usually given by the mother or someone else (the caregiver) who knows the child. Sometimes it is helpful to get the history from both the child and mother as each may emphasize different parts of the history. Some patients may need help to describe and explain their symptoms. Adolescents may wish to be seen without a parent present.
The history not only provides information about the present illness but can also give important details about the child’s past health, social and home environment.