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The review of systems (ROS) is considered the secondary history and involves asking specific questions targeted to augment the primary history (HPI). These questions are designed to assist you in formulating a differential diagnosis or judging the severity of an illness or disorder.

The ROS is a focused set of questions, organized generally from head to toe, by the major organ systems. In this chapter you will find a complete ROS in the order most commonly used in medical practice.

Use the complete ROS when taking an initial history or admitting a patient to the hospital, or while working up a new patient in an outpatient setting.

However, most often in clinical practice, you may only need the specific ROS questions related to the patient’s chief complaint or active medical condition(s). For instance, in many cases when a patient presents with an acute problem, for example at the emergency room or in an urgent care setting, you may need to cover only one or two body systems. Likewise, with patients who present for management of chronic medical conditions whose status has changed, you may need to use one or more body systems targeting that particular disorder.


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Do you have a fever, chills?

¿Tiene usted fiebre, escalofríos?

Have you had any sudden changes in weight?

¿Ha tenido usted cambios abruptos de peso?

¿Ha tenido usted cambios rápidos de peso?

Do you have night sweats?

¿Tiene sudores nocturnos?

Have you had a decrease in appetite?

¿Le ha bajado su apetito?

Have you had an increase in appetite?

¿Le ha subido su apetito?

Do you have excessive fatigue?

¿Tiene usted fatiga excesiva?


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Do you have any rashes?

¿Tiene usted erupción?

¿Tiene usted salpullido?

¿Tiene usted pintas rojas en su piel?

  • How long have you had it (weeks, months, years)?

  • ¿Por cuánto tiempo ha tenido este problema (semanas, meses, años)?

  • Does it itch?

  • ¿Le pican?

  • Is it red?

  • ¿Son rojas?

  • Has it spread?

  • ¿Se le han regado?

  • Did it spread rapidly?

  • ¿Se le han regado rápido?

  • Did it spread gradually?

  • ¿Se le han regado gradualmente?

  • ¿Se le han regado despacio?

  • Have you used any new …

  • ¿Usted a utilizado algún …

  • ¿Usted a usado algún(a) …

    • soaps?

    • jabón nuevo?

    • detergents?

    • detergente nuevo?

    • deodorants?

    • desodorante nuevo?

    • lotions?

    • loción nueva?

  • Have you been working outside or in the yard?

  • ¿Ha estado trabajando en el patio u otro lugar afuera?

  • Have you ever had poison ivy?

    • ¿Usted ha sido expuesto/a a Hiedra venenosa?

      ¿Usted ha sido expuesto a Zumaque venenoso?

Do you have problems with dandruff (flaking, itching in your scalp)?

¿Tiene usted problemas de caspa (con descamaciones o con picazón en su cabellara)?

¿Tiene usted problemas de ...

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