Questions To Ask Your Neurosurgeon
Are you considering Neurosurgery to help you deal with your back pain? Though neurosurgery has rapidly modernized, it is still a serious undertaking. The riskiness of procedures varies, and it can be very overwhelming for someone who has never had surgery before (or even for someone who has.) Not everyone who has spine problems will get surgery. Some spinal problems can be treated with medication or physical therapy. But if your neurosurgeon suggests surgery, it’s best to prepare some questions to ask them about the procedure.
As a potential patient, you have a right to know as much as possible about the procedure that is being recommended. This covers everything from healing time, surgery prep, and prognosis. Knowing what to expect for your surgery will go a long way to calming your nerves. And remember, not all neurosurgeons are created equal. Consider a spine center that has the best qualifications and a history of listening to patients, such as Minimally Invasive Neurosurgery Texas, or MINT. With MINT, you have the peace of mind of knowing you are in capable hands.
Why Is This Procedure Being Recommended For Your Condition?
First things first, ask your doctor why they are recommending this procedure for your condition. Any neurosurgeon worth their salt should be able to explain to you the exact benefit this procedure has for your condition, and how it can be used to treat it.
Have All Non-Surgical Options Been Explored?
Not all spinal conditions require surgery. Many can be treated with other methods. Ask your neurosurgeon if surgery is the only option for your condition, and if there are other treatment plans you would like to explore first.
What Kind Of Success Has The Neurosurgeon Had With Using This Procedure To Treat Your Condition?
Ask about other patients your neurosurgeon has treated with the procedure they recommend. They will be able to explain how what they are recommending has helped others suffering from the same condition as you. If you are really concerned, ask if you could speak to another patient they treated with the same condition.
How Many Times Has The Neurosurgeon Completed This Procedure?
Ask your neurosurgeon if they have used this procedure to treat a condition like yours in the past. Hopefully, they have done so many times. If they haven’t, you might want to consider a surgeon with more experience with the procedure or get a second opinion.
What Will Happen During The Procedure?
Whether you are getting minimally invasive surgery or the more traditional “open” back surgery, you are going to need a step-by-step walkthrough to put your mind at ease. Ask your neurosurgeon about what kind of anesthetics will be used, and how you will be feeling during the procedure.
What Are The Risks Of This Procedure?
While modern surgery is relatively low risk, all surgery comes with a small amount of risk. No one can account for all the different variables and unforeseen circumstances. That being said, side effects tend to be rare. Ask your neurosurgeon what the risks are, and how likely they are to happen.
What Kind Of Recovery Time Should You Expect?
There is a very practical reason to ask about your surgery recovery time: you need to know when you will be able to resume your life as normal. You need to be emotionally and physically prepared for what kind of recovery you are going to need after this procedure and how the healing process will impact your day-to-day life.
How Will We Know If The Procedure Worked?
You need to have realistic expectations for the outcome of this surgery. Ask your neurosurgeon what your barometer for success is. Is it to be pain-free or decrease pain? Improve mobility, joint function, etc? Whatever it is, make sure you discuss it beforehand. As a patient, you need to be prepared for what surgery success does and does not look like in your case.
What Would Happen With My Condition If I Did Not Get Surgery?
Ask your neurosurgeon how your condition would progress if you elected to not get the surgery they recommended. Would your condition worsen? Stay the same? These questions can help you decide if the risk of surgery is worth the potential benefit.
Minimally Invasive Surgery Texas
Experiencing spine pain in Texas? Dr. Scott Kutz is a board-certified neurosurgeon specializing in minimally invasive spinal surgery. Our cutting-edge surgical treatments can have you back on your feet in no time– many are outpatient procedures! Give us a call or check out our website, and find out how we can help you start living pain-free today!