What to Ask Your Doctor Before Scheduling Surgery

If you are planning to have surgery, you may be anxious. Asking the right questions before scheduling surgery can help ensure good care and give you a better idea of what to expect.

Here are a few areas you may want to cover with your surgeon in advance of the big day.

Reviewing Your Options

The implications of your surgery will extend beyond the day you go to the hospital. Your doctor may offer you options when it comes to the type of surgery performed. Find out the length and type of recovery period for each option, as well as the expected outcomes.

For example, one option may be typically associated with shorter expected recovery time, but could carry greater risk. Another option may be associated with better long-term outcomes, but increase recovery time or leave larger scars. A third option may not involve surgery at all. The many factors at play will help you make the decision that is best for your long-term health.

Improved Therapies

While great strides have been made to operate using smaller incisions in procedures known as minimally invasive or laparoscopic surgery, controlling bleeding is still a major issue for surgeons. In fact, the task can account for 30 to 50 percent of procedure time, and for those on blood thinners, the bleeding risk is even higher.

However, new innovations are revolutionizing this process, making surgery faster and safer for patients. For example, the AC5 Surgical Hemostatic Device is being studied to see if it can one day provide a faster, more effective means of controlling bleeding during operations versus other common methods, such as cautery or the use of biomaterials.

This new device, created by Arch Therapeutics, uses AC5, which is made of a synthetic peptide, to safely and rapidly create a physical barrier in the nooks and crannies of tissue and promptly stop bleeding. Reduced fluid and blood loss during surgery can improve patient safety, free the surgical team to focus on other tasks, and lessen recovery time.

Before your surgery, ask your doctor about medical innovations that may improve your outcome.

Surgeon’s Credentials

There may be few times in your life where reviewing a professional’s credentials is more important than when you are picking a surgeon. Luckily, there are many impartial, online rating sites for doctors and surgeons that can help you determine whether your doctor is the best fit for you — from the years of experience they’ve had to their success rates. You may even consider getting a second opinion on the necessity of surgery.

Your health is in your hands more than you may realize. Be sure to seek out the best therapies available. You can help steer the direction of your healthcare with the right questions for your surgeon.


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