Choosing the Best Spine Surgeon
If you have seen your primary care physician and they recommend that you see a surgeon for further examination what is the next step? Your health is not something to take lightly, therefore you should spend time researching your best options.
Research, Research, Research...
The first thing you should do is ask your primary care physician for any recommendations. Your doctor may know someone that he or she trust to give a clear and correct diagnosis. In some cases, your doctor may know a surgeon to stay away from, or perhaps not have any information, but this is always the best place to start.
Once you have a few names a simple google search can help you find reviews from past patients. A few good websites to find information on surgeons and doctors are rateMD.com, Healthgrades.com and vitals.com. It is crucial to find out if your doctor is board certified and if they are certified to practice in your state.(Spine specialist in Garden City, NY)
Now that you have a few surgeons/doctors that you are ready to see you have to be prepared to ask specific questions about your diagnosis or suggested procedure. Surgery, specifically spinal surgery, is often elective, so you should make sure it is absolutely necessary before you make your decision. Getting a second opinion is always a good idea.
A few questions to ask your doctor/surgeon:
• How many of these procedures have you performed?
• What is your success rate?
• What are the risks of the procedure?
• Is this procedure completely necessary? (Don’t let them push you into getting a surgery that isn’t necessary, especially if it puts you at risk.)
• How long will I remain in the hospital?
• What is my short and long term recovery time?
A few questions to ask yourself:
• Did the doctor make me feel comfortable?
• Did the doctor spend time with me and answer all of my questions?
• Was the staff courteous and knowledgeable?
• Did the doctor seem confident that this procedure will benefit me?