While at the hospital
Ask some essential questions, particularly before undergoing a surgery or any procedure. This is a universal right - even when you go outside of your country. Feelings of uneasiness are not uncommon, but you would not get a chance after the operation. Educate yourself, eliminate any anxiety and empower yourself as a patient or patient's attendant. The following are some questions that you should ask as you move through the process.
1. Do I have to go through this procedure / medical treatment? Is there any alternate (keeping in mind your age!)? Is it the only place for this type of surgery? What are the advantages at this place? After that, other than emergency, take your time to decide or go for second opinion. In emergency cases, if possible look at the experience and expertise of the surgeon, staff and hospital. Today in case of medical surgeries many procedures are done on an outpatient basis. This lowers the cost of these procedures since you are not paying for a hospital cabin. Be sure to ask your clinic why they recommend either day care or indoor services.
2. Wise and good doctors always welcome a second opinion. As modern science developed different school of thoughts, reasons to have surgery may vary from relieving or preventing pain / complaints. Ask your doctor to specifically explain why this procedure may improve your medical condition.
3. If a child is the patient, make sure the hospital has experience, facilities and paediatric supporting staff - especially phlebotomist with pediatric patients. The same goes for the elderly patients.
4. Do not hesitate to ask questions. It is important to express your feelings, questions and concerns prior having surgery. If you do not understand your doctor's responses, ask politely until you do.
5. Anaesthesia is one of the most concerning aspects of surgery. Being nervous about anaesthesia is normal, but a good anaesthetist is your best friend during and after the surgery. After surgery you may have pain, nausea or vomiting. Ask your doctor and anaesthetist what can be done to lessen these reactions. Learn what your expected recovery time will be like. Always ask about your pain management options. Be sure that your nurses, helping hands, friends or relatives understand what to expect in the weeks following the surgery. Knowing what to expect makes the recovery process different and certainly better. For some patients, the anaesthesia administration is more important than the actual surgery in terms of having an optimal outcome. Make sure to ask about your options for anaesthesia, the pros and cons and the potential complications.
6. Find out if you need any testing before and immediately after the procedure, or if you need to make any changes to your medication regimen. Ask your doctor about eating and drinking before the procedure. Mental preparation is also key factor. You need to prepare your family or helping hands, because chances are you will need their assistance when you come home. Be sure that it is not easy to go back to your regular life instantly. Complications are sometimes unavoidable after surgery, but you can help reduce some of the risks by following your doctor's instructions.
Life is complicated these days, so prepare yourself physically and mentally. Talk to your close ones, those who had this type of operation, friend or relative, your doctor and other concerned specialists.