View Full Version : Checklist of questions to ask surgeon during pre-surgery consultation?

04-14-2011, 12:18 PM
The surgeon I saw in March has recommended Laminectomy + Fusion for me; tomorrow my husband and I will both be meeting with him to discuss things.

This will be my opportunity to ask any questions I need to ask; I didn't really have a chance to do that last time I saw him. I've already started a list of questions, but was wondering if there are any good checklists of questions to ask available anywhere.

-- Thanks,

04-14-2011, 12:38 PM
Hi Mary...

I really recommend against going in to see your surgeon with a list of questions compiled by other people. I work for a group of spinal deformity surgeons, and have been in the room dozens of times when patients come in with such a list. The appointments are always very awkward, and the patients always seem confused and frustrated afterward. Instead, I would suggest going to the appointment, and letting the surgeon lead the discussion. If s/he hasn't already done so, s/he should describe the basics of what s/he'll do, and what the experience will be like for you. As the surgeon is describing things, don't hesitate to stop them to ask questions or tell them you don't understand. Having your husband there should help. Tell him to also not be afraid to stop the surgeon with questions. When the surgeon is done, s/he should ask you if you have any questions. At that time, ask any questions on your list that haven't already been answered. Also, when the appointment is winding down, ask the surgeon if there's a way to get additional questions answered, if you think of anything in the next few days before surgery.

If you haven't already talked to other patients of your surgeons, who went through a very similar procedure, I would do that now. They can really give you some insight on what to expect. (A word of caution, here, however. We're all very different, and your experience can be entirely different from someone who is just like you.)

Best of luck with your surgery.