The significance of the “doctor-patient relationship” can’t be overstated. It is a relationship of trust, and that should be taken seriously by both the physician and the patient. As a patient, it is important that you feel comfortable honestly expressing your goals, your concerns, and your medical history with your surgeon. In turn, you should expect the same level of sincerity and openness from your surgeon.
Here are a few other things to watch for when determining if your surgeon is a good fit for you:
- Your consultation and preoperative appointments should not be rushed. It is critical that your surgeon spend enough time with you to understand your concerns and visualize what you are looking to achieve. He or she should communicate clearly the benefits, risks, expected outcome, and recovery of the procedure(s). If the surgeon delegates most of these tasks to other staff, he or she may avoid dealing with any concerns after surgery as well.
- Consider whether you are personally comfortable with your surgeon. Does he or she listen to you? Are you given the opportunity to fully discuss your goals and concerns? Are you given thorough, detailed information about the operation? Your surgeon should help you understand the procedure and what you can expect from it. He or she should have a solid plan for your care, and should be able to discuss it in a way that is meaningful to you. You should feel like he or she has your best interests in mind, and that you can ask anything without feeling embarrassed.
- A good surgeon is not arrogant or offended by questions. You should be able to ask about your surgeon’s experience, the number of procedures performed, complications that have occurred, and any other question that is relevant to your care. If you have not seen enough before and after pictures online before the consultation, be sure to ask in the office; some surgeons will have additional images from patients who have not allowed website use but have allowed photos to be shown in the office. A good surgeon will be glad to show you his work.
At the conclusion of your appointment, whether it was a first consultation or a post-operative follow up, you should feel like your concerns were addressed and that your surgeon is walking with you to the next step of your journey.
To learn more about Gallatin Plastic Surgery and what makes us so unique, please visit us at www.gallatinplasticsurgery.com. We take pride in what we do, and we look forward to serving you!