Your first appointment with an orthopedic surgeon can be intimidating and confusing as you’re probably still adjusting to the idea of having surgery. Making a list of questions can help calm your nerves and ensure that you get all the right information. It also allows your doctor to have an understanding of your concerns.
The list of questions below is ideal to ask when visiting an orthopedic surgeon for the first time.
10 Questions You Should Ask an Orthopedic Surgeon on Your First Visit
1. Why is this the recommended procedure for my condition?
It’s crucial to ask if the recommended surgical procedure is the most appropriate to treat your condition. An orthopedic surgeon can discuss the reasons for surgery and why it is the most fitting for your condition. Your surgeon’s answer will help you better understand your diagnosis and the necessity of surgery.
The answer to this question will depend on the severity of your health issue and the location of your pain, among other factors. You may ask if there are alternative procedures or treatments available.
2. What will happen during the procedure?
Ask your doctor about the procedure, the instruments that will be used, and the typical duration of the surgery. Your surgeon should give you a detailed explanation of what will happen on the operating table. This will give you a better sense of what to expect.
3. Will I feel pain during the procedure?
Patients usually ask whether they will feel anything during surgery, and whether they’ll be awake or unconscious. Your surgeon may have an anesthesiologist assisting them while in the operating room, depending on the surgery you are getting done. You should ask about the type of anesthesia being used and its risks.
4. How successful is the recommended procedure in treating my condition?
Asking about the success rate of the procedure allows you to determine whether it can give relief to your condition. Your orthopedic surgeon should confidently give you more details about the process and the data regarding its success rate. This will help you make an informed decision on whether you want to proceed or not.
5. What are the involved risks of the recommended procedure?
This question is one of the most important things you can ask your surgeon. In orthopedic surgery, techniques vary from minimally invasive procedures to complicated surgery involving hours of reconstruction. Therefore, it’s only right to ask about risks, since every surgery poses uncertainties. A dependable surgeon will explain the risks and how to avoid complications.
6. Do I need to have surgery now or can I wait?
The timing of the procedure is essential. You may first want to try conservative treatments, and if you’re still undecided, you may want to postpone surgery. The answer to this question depends on whether you can afford to delay the surgery without the risk of complications. An orthopedic surgeon can determine if you will need the procedure as soon as possible or if postponing it is okay.
7. Will I need additional surgery afterward?
It’s normal to ask questions regarding the long-term benefits of an initial procedure. Not all surgeries end up successful, and some may only give limited relief. As such, you may need additional surgery in the future, and you should take this into consideration. It’s best to ask your doctor whether you will need a second surgery later on.
8. How many similar procedures have you performed?
Since surgery can be a life-changing decision, you should know whether your surgeon is an expert before proceeding. Having an experienced surgeon perform the surgery can you give you relief and confidence that your surgery will have successful outcomes.
9. How long will recovery take?
Knowing the length of your recovery period allows you to plan your life accordingly. It will also be best to understand whether you will need physical therapy, treatments, or medications after the procedure. You should also ask questions about the length of time you will need therapy or assistive devices, if appropriate.
10. When can I resume my regular activities?
Your surgeon should let you know about the dos and don’ts after the surgery. They should also inform you about limitations post-surgery and how long you will need to recover until you can go back to your regular activities.
Orthopedic Surgeon in St. Peters & O’Fallon, MO
If you need orthopedic surgery, you should make sure you are in the hands of a capable orthopedic surgeon who can answer all your questions and successfully perform the procedure.
At Advanced Bone & Joint, we take your concerns seriously and answer your questions to the best of our abilities. You can contact us at (636) 229-4222 or use our online appointment request form to meet with our experts.