How to Find a Great Spine Surgeon
By A Aaronson
If you're suffering from debilitating back problems, you'll definitely need to see a spine surgeon to have the problem diagnosed. How do you find the right specialist for the task? Looking up names on the internet is helpful to identify local people, but there's always chances you may end up spending your copay on a person you're not comfortable being around. If you're looking for a guaranteed way to find the right person for your future operation, consider taking the time to prepare and consider these steps.
Pay Attention During the Consultation
The initial phase of any appointment with the doctor is the consultation. This is your time to share your medical issues and past history. Take note of how the doctor acts during this conversation. You want your spine surgeon to be very attentive and willing to answer every single question you want to ask. While his time is valuable, your time is important as well since you're willing to share intimate details about yourself. If you notice that the doctor seems eager to get to the next appointment, chances are that this person isn't the right choice to do the surgery. You want a person who will be attentive to detail and is patient at all times. Make sure the doctor you choose is a person you feel comfortable with operating on your body.
Don't Be Afraid to Ask About the Doctor's Qualifications
As you chat with the doctor, make sure you learn a little about the history of the spine surgeon before you agree to a future operation. Ask about their certifications and number of previous surgeries. You want to deal with somebody who is familiar with your situation and has operated on people with similar problems as you. You don't want to be the guinea pig in this situation. If possible, ask if you can get some references. Talking to former patients will give you an idea of how the doctor works and some boosted confidence if you hear some good feedback. Going into the operation feeling like you've made the right choice should be your overall goal.
Scrutinize the Post-Operative Instructions
When you're chatting with the doctor, see if you can get a pamphlet of post-operative instructions. How specific are the directions? If you feel like you're not learning anything about the recovery process, it's time to find a different person. Also, ask about their contingency plan in case there are any complications. Will they be easy to call over the phone? You want somebody who can get in touch with you easily.
There's no doubt that you should be patient and prepared when searching for a spine surgeon. Take the entire situation seriously and be sure to go to several consultations before you decide on one person. There will be plenty of people who are qualified for the task, but there may be fewer candidates that match your personality. Find the doctor who will get the job done and be willing to listen to your concerns when the time comes.
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