All surgeries have risks and benefits and so it’s important to understand them before deciding whether the procedure is appropriate for you especially if it’s not an emergency surgery.
It’s very important to ask your doctor questions about your surgery so you can understand the procedures and put your mind at ease.
Here are some questions to ask your doctor before and after surgery.
1. Will This Surgery Solve The Problem?
Will any more surgery be required in the future? Have your doctor fully explain why this procedure is necessary and how this will improve your overall health.
2. Are There Other Treatment Options Or Is This Operation The Best Option For Me?
Your doctor should clearly explain the benefits and risks of these choices so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not surgery is necessary. Sometimes “watchful waiting” is indicated whereby the doctor will monitor your condition over time to observe changes and the progression of a disease. You may still need surgery, or if your condition improves or stabilizes, you may be able to postpone surgery. After a period of “watchful waiting,” it may be determined that surgery is still the best choice.
3. What Are the Risks, Benefits, And Possible Complications For This Operation?
Most likely, the risks have already been explained to you, but some information is worth repeating — and it’s never too late to ask more questions. Depending on the type of surgery, you may want to inquire about survival rates, potential complications, and how your body may react to the procedure.
4. What Medications Should I Stop Taking Before Surgery?
Will there be any change in my routine medications? Will I need any special diet? When do I have to stop eating and drinking? Should I take my home medication on the day of my operation?
If you’re already on certain medications before the surgery, find out when to stop them in advance. In many cases, you’ll be given specific instructions on bathing and preparing your body in the hours before surgery: e.g., no shampoo, perfumes, lotions, or makeup. These measures are vital for infection control while in surgery and for your hospital stay.
5. Could You Tell Me About Your Experience With This Operation?
Do you perform this operation regularly? What is your success rate? It is not out of place to ask your doctor about his or her experience with the procedure being done, including the number of times he or she has done it, and his or her record of successes, as well as complications.
6. What Type Of Anaesthesia Will Be Administered?
Are sedatives or other medications required prior to the procedure? What are the risks of the type of anesthesia to be used?
Anaesthesia or anaesthesia is a state of temporary induced loss of sensation or awareness. It may include analgesia (relief from or prevention of pain), paralysis (muscle relaxation), amnesia (loss of memory), or unconsciousness.
Your Doctor should tell you the type of anesthesia is recommended for your procedure and why. You should also ask who will be giving the anesthesia to confirm they are highly qualified to give anesthesia.
7. What Will Recovery Involve?
Once the surgery is behind you, it’s not necessarily business as usual. Are there any activity restrictions (driving, sports, etc.)? What are they and for how long? When can you drive again? When can you be intimate with your partner? When can you shower? Or resume your usual diet?