The world-renowned Athenian philosopher Plato rightly stated that “Ignorance, the root and stem of all evil.” This holds true in all spheres of our lives and its ramifications can be experienced at almost all stages. People facing health adversities more often than not end up getting anxious and thus refrain from asking the right questions from their doctors.
This almost always occurs in cases where surgical procedures are required to treat an existing condition. With a confused mind, the patient always ends up being jittery and stresses his/her mind even after the procedure has been carried out successfully. Thus, it is safe to say that no patient should get an operation or procedure done unless they are absolutely sure and understand its cause and effect.
The most important reasons why being fully aware and informed about the procedure to be conducted are-
- Full knowledge helps in relieving all anxiety and confusion pertaining to the procedure.
- It helps in deciding whether undergoing the procedure is the best treatment method or not.
- Having all the concerns addressed leaves the patient relaxed, care-free and comfortable.
Various questions that must be asked by all patients planning to undergo a procedure are-
What is the procedure that is being performed?
The first and foremost aspect that needs to be understood is the purpose and procedure of the surgery to be performed. The doctor generally leads with telling the patient about the need and various steps involved in the procedure. The patient is generally made aware of the different ways in which a certain procedure is performed and why a particular type is being favored over the others.
Why is the procedure being ordered and what is the cost?
The patient should know what condition is being treated by performing a surgical procedure. The various reasons may vary from enhancing an organ function to diagnosing health adversity. The cost of the procedure including follow up medication must be enquired by the patient.
What are the other available treatment options?
It is very important for the patient to understand the various options available for the treatment of their condition. In some cases, it is possible to improve the condition by making changes to the lifestyle or taking medication. It is essential to take a rational decision after knowing all the available options and choosing the most appropriate option with the help of the doctor consultation.
What are the probable risks associated with the concerned procedure?
Although it is always better to stay positive in life, it is very important to understand that there is a lot of uncertainty that can be related to a surgical procedure. Thus, it is very important to understand the various risks that the patient is prone to in case he/she decides to go ahead with the procedure. The basic questions that all patients should ask are-
- What are the most commonly occurring risks?
- What is the worst that could go wrong?
- What is the probability of occurrence of extreme adversities?
- What are the complications that do arise because of this procedure?
- Will I have to make changes to my lifestyle post the procedure?
What precautions need to be followed before undergoing this procedure?
Most surgical procedures require specific precautions to be taken by the patient. The commonly prescribed instructions are pertaining to-
- The patient’s lifestyle
- Eating habits
- Dietary requisites
- Medication (If any)
Note: It must also be enquired if any blood sample, thinners or changes to the routine medication are required before undergoing the procedure.
How long is the recovery period?
It is essential to understand the time that it would take the patient to return to their normal lifestyle and activities post the procedure. The patient may be required to be hospitalized post the surgery. All information pertaining to this must also be discussed with the doctor.
The post-op medication, exercises, and dietary habits must also be discussed in detail with the doctor.
What is the success rate of the procedure?
All patients must be aware of the rate of success of the procedure they are about to undergo. Understanding the mere risks associated with the procedure is not merely enough. Knowing the rate of success and the expertise as well as experience of the doctor is of utmost importance.
How long do the results of the procedure last?
In case of certain procedures, the surgery only helps to elevate the symptoms for a limited span of time instead of indefinitely. Thus, the time for which the surgical procedure helps to relieve the existing symptoms or conditions should be ascertained before undergoing the process.
Where will the procedure take place and how long will it take?
Some procedures are carried out in the outpatient department while others require the patient to be admitted to the hospital for a while. The time and duration of the procedure, as well as the observation period, should be enquired about.
Is the procedure covered under my current insurance plan?
Various insurance plans cover surgical procedures but it is important to understand how much the surgery is going to set you back financially so that you can be prepared.
Other than the above-mentioned questions, it is advised to be absolutely clear and comfortable with the doctor before undergoing a surgical procedure. In case of any apprehensions, do not hesitate to take a second opinion. Patients looking for finding one-stop solutions for surgical queries can book an appointment at Venketswar Hospital. Their panel of expert surgeons is adept in catering to any and all requirements of patients needing surgical procedures.