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What are the red flags when choosing a surgeon?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,670
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:29 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Most of us have seek 2nd or 3rd opinions. Sometimes we favor one over the other. Be it OS or NS. I think we should compile a list of Red Flags, things that we should be awared of when we see a surgeon. What are the red flags you observed that the surgeon doesn't fit you?



  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,875

    - Do not listen to what you have to say
    - Talk down to you , trying to put themselves above you
    - Rushing you out, not giving you a chance to talk
    - Being late for appointment schedules
    - Not addressing you by your first name
    - Not looking into your eyes

    These are just some of my big-a-boos with doctors
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • also when they mention {an experimental procedure they would like to try!}..and if you have been to see several surgeons and they have all said no to surgery for one reason on another ..then someone says yes i will give that a go ...run like hell!!!
  • When they spend more time trying to convince you how qualified they are, instead of trying to figure out a way to help you.
  • I agree with Ron. My first interview with a Neurosurgeon would not answer any of my questions and basically told me to be quiet and not talk. He was very rude and I left his office in tears. He asked my why I was there in the first place, yet he wanted to perform an ADR on me. I was referred to him by a NP at my clinic. I had asked for my cd from my MRI and they would not return it to me.
  • Here's another one in my opinon, when the surgeon looks at you and says the pain is all in your head and then says here take some of these pain pills (Neurotin) and then says see you later have a nice life!
  • About 30 years ago, my mom was told that her pain was all in her head. The doc even told her to seek psychiatry help (I'm all for this when needed).

    Anyway, she was suffering from back pain. About 4 years ago, someone finally listened or she was willing to open up to a doc and had two back surgeries.
  • My whole deal was if the pain is in my head then why ar eyou giving me meds that deaden nerves and is used for eypalepsie (sp) Din't make any sense to me and really made me mad. Oh well at least I found a surgeon who listened to me. I guess thats all taht really matters.
  • Not calling you by your first name, and you will look away? I mean at the first appointment, will doctor ever address you by first name?

    Here are some more red flags:

    If you have a doctor who refuses to let you go for a 2nd opinion, stating that if he couldn't fix the problem, no one else could. You have to disbelieve him. There is definitely someone, somewhere out there, will be smarter than him.

    If the surgeon suggest surgery immediately without considering conventional method first when it is clearly not an emergency.

  • I worried that in choosing my physician I was choosing my treatment (I still think this):

    Pain management dr. - medications

    Radiowhatever kind of dr. he was from the pain clinic too - the nerve frying thing they do

    Physiotherapist - Physical therapy and manipulation

    Neurosurgeon - surgery

    and I can't remember the what the first back dr. I saw was, ortho or ?, he wasn't a neuro - he just wanted to do cortisone-

    -that dr. actually thought I had scoliosis (I don't) and very dismissively told me to 'if you don't want cortisone just get dressed and leave then' I was in some serious tears after that apt. I had never been treated so horridly by a supposed 'professional'. Have you ever had a back dr. make you strip naked? I hadn't - until this guy. I had a torn paper gown I was allowed that (even though I'm not a large person) did not cover me at all.

    I WAS offered my choice of all the above. I tried all of them including another Ortho except for the Pain Clinic people, I'd already dealt with them during my husbands back problems and was very unimpressed.
  • The first surgeon I went to didn't even broach what the non surgical alternatives would be. It was ACDF or nothing. I went to a second neurosurgeon and eventually had surgery. But at least he covered all the non surgical alternatives and the pro's and con's of each.
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