How to Find a Good Surgeon

Surgery can be a little scary to most people, but once they find an experienced surgeon that they trust and are comfortable with, they usually begin to relax. The type of surgeon you need may depend on your needs. In some cases, a general surgeon may be appropriate, while in others a better choice may be to find a specialist. Surgeons with specialties require board certifications, ensuring their expertise.


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    Ask your primary care doctor to make a recommendation for a qualified surgeon. If you're not sure of the type of surgeon you need, ask your doctor. General surgeons perform many different types of surgeries, primarily dealing with the digestive tract. They perform gallbladder, liver, colon and pancreatic surgeries.
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    Look to your family and friends for advise and a recommendation. Quite often, you will find someone close to you that has used or who knows a good surgeon. It is always comforting to receive a recommendation from a close friend.
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    Check with your health insurance company. Depending on your insurance, you may need to use an in-network surgeon if you want your health insurance policy to cover its portion of the expenses.
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    Eliminate any surgeons that family and friends have found to be unsatisfactory. This will help in steering you in the right direction while saving you time.
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    Inquire about using a specialized surgeon.
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    Schedule consultations with 2 or 3 potential surgeons. Find out how long the surgery will take, if there are risks associated with the procedure, what the risks are, how long the recovery period is and what type of follow-up care you'll need.
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    Question the surgeon's qualifications and experience. Make sure you ask how many times he has performed this procedure.
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    Trust your instincts. If you have an uneasy feeling about a surgeon, the way he answered your questions or the way he conducted the consultation, walk away. Your instincts are usually right.
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    Schedule your surgery only after the surgeon answers all your questions. Choose the surgeon that you feel most comfortable with.


  • Before arriving to your consultation, make a list of questions for the surgeon. You want to be certain you don't forget anything. If you do think of additional questions after leaving the surgeon's office, make sure to call his office when you arrive home.
  • Bring a pen and note pad to your consultation. Make notes of any important information pertaining to your surgery. Having written information will help you compare doctors after you meet with them all.


  • Never go with just 1 opinion when there is a possibility of surgery. Always get at least 2 opinions.

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Categories: Finding a Medical Specialist