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Old 04-07-2009, 04:23 AM
Maria Maria is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 2,405
Default what to ask


If you've not had films done yet or diagnostic testing it's more or less about presenting with your symptoms and the doctor telling you what he thinks it is but for anything that's continuing on and really bad pain that limits activity for anything beyond an acute flare up there should be more definitive diagnostics done with xray, MRI and so forth.

Have you had films done yet? I'm guessing so and if so then I always like my films reviewed with me as well as the report.

The thing I've noticed is that sometimes the doctor will go over the films very quickly and if the report isn't in my hands where I can read what it says I may not see something I want to ask to be further explained so that's why I like to see the report or review it with the doctor as well as the films.

Ask him to explain in easy to understand terminology and point out where he thinks the problems are and how they may have developed.

Ask him to explain what further tests he might do to rule out other potential pain generators or are there ones that might not show up on the tests he's ordered already.

Ask him to explain the proposed surgery (surgery he's suggesting) and what type of hardware he would use ie fusion - what type of cages, how many screws, rods etc... ADR what type of implant and/or hybrid surgery with fusion at one level and ADR at one or why would he consider fusion over ADR or vice versa.

Explain the surgery in terms of if it's global (anterior and posterior or anterior or posterior ?? incision/entry, what other structures are affected with this surgery anteriorly or posteriorly or both).

Ask if it's thought that the proposed surgery would affect the level above or below and/or weaken other segments, cause other problems.. more pain?

Ask him how many surgeries he's done like this before (esp. if ADR).

What the typical timeline is for recovery

Will you be able to take care of your daughter

What activities must you absolutely avoid post surgery (esp. as you're a single parent).

*** I always like to ask for copies of my films or at least the report of tests done.

As mentioned previously formulating the questions you want to ask the night before is most helpful to me and after the doctor is done examining me I tell him I have some very questions for him and go down my list to make it easier for him or her to answer but I try to get all my questions answered and write down anything important the doctor mentions that I can later look up.

This is pretty off the cuff and I apologize for not being more organized with what I'm stating.. I'm a bit tired as it was hot here all day and my back is hurting sitting while I type. Good luck!

Last edited by Maria; 04-07-2009 at 04:27 AM.
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