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Home / Preparing for Scheduled Surgery / Questions for Your Doctor & Surgeon

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Questions for Your Doctor & Surgeon

At each step to scheduled surgery, these questions may help you open discussions with your doctor and surgeon about your health care options.

1Seeing Your Doctor

  • Why do you think I need to see a surgeon?
  • Why have you referred me to this particular surgeon?
  • How much experience do they have in treating my type of condition?
  • If I need surgery, how long will I have to wait?
  • If the specialist has a long wait list, is there another one in the region that can provide the same treatment sooner?
  • How can I prepare myself for the consultation?
  • If I need surgery, how will I know where I am on the waitlist?
  • If I need surgery, should I continue to see you regularly while I am waiting?
  • If I need surgery, how do I prepare? Is there any other information I need?

2Seeing Your Surgeon

  • Are other treatments available for my condition other than surgery?
  • How necessary and how urgent is the surgery? Is surgery appropriate for me?
  • What are the risks and benefits of having the surgery?
  • Can you describe to me what the surgery entails?
  • What is the likely and realistic outcome of this surgery for me?
  • How long have other patients waited for this type of surgery?
  • For the procedure I need, how many do you perform each year?

3Waiting For Surgery

  • How can I prepare for this surgery? Are there any other specialists I need to see, or information I need?
  • Will I need to see my family doctor while waiting for surgery?
  • How will I know where I am on the waitlist?
  • Is there evidence my condition will change while I wait?
  • What should I do if my condition changes while I am waiting for surgery?
  • How can I arrange to be contacted on short notice if a cancellation occurs?
  • What should I do if I change my mind about having the surgery, if I need to re-schedule, or if my condition improves and I no longer need surgery?
  • What does recovery look like? How can I prepare?

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Health Authorities in B.C.