You’ve tried to ignore the pain but it won’t go away. A visit to your primary care physician confirms that you need to see an orthopedic specialist. This is an important decision that could impact your future wellbeing. It’s a good idea to approach the selection process in a thoughtful and objective way.
Great Referrals are a Good Sign
Your primary care physician can be a first step in the referral process. Most physicianshave Hartford orthopedic specialists they refer patients to on a regular basis. But don’t stop there. Ask friends and family for suggestions, especially if you know someone who experienced a similar problem. After you’ve compiled a list of potential physicians, check their credentials and their specializations. You’ll want to see the physician whose training most closely matches your condition. Board certification can be another indication of expertise. A physician who is board certified has passed a rigorous examination in their medical discipline.
There are websites that offer information on physicians, including patient reviews, a summary of their educational background and any malpractice or disciplinary actions in their history. Take patient reviews with a dose of skepticism, since it is impossible to know all the circumstances that led to the positive or negative report.
An Interview is an Opportunity for Assessment
Once you’ve narrowed the field of Hartford orthopedic specialists, make an appointment for a consultation with each of your finalists. An interview can be a great time to assess the specialist on a number of levels. Most medical groups like Orthopedic Hartford, Ct., will likely be happy to accommodate this request. Ask about experience with your condition or the type of procedure that you need. How many similar surgeries has the physician performed? What are the possible complications and how frequently does this specialist encounter difficulties? Find out whether there are circumstances that make some patients less likely to have a speedy recovery.
While your specialist’s skill is critical, it is also important to pick someone with whom you can develop a trusting relationship. You should feel comfortable enough to ask frank questions and to express doubts or fears that you have about the treatment you will receive. An interview also gives you a chance to see whether a physician’s communication style matches your own. If you are not at ease talking with someone of the opposite gender, acknowledge that and proceed accordingly. What seems like a small issue initially, could be more significant as you move forward.
A Quality Facility is Another Plus
Whether you’ll be an outpatient or spend time in the hospital, the facility will impact your comfort and your confidence. Many of the hospitals and surgery centers where Hartford orthopedic specialists practice are rated and ranked online. A high rating can mean higher success rates and fewer complications for patients. If you are unfamiliar with the facility, you may want to visit to assure yourself that it is an environment where you will feel safe and well cared for. Lastly, the location may be important for follow-up visits as well as for family and friends to easily visit you.
When you undergo a procedure, you put your health in your doctor’s hands. A thoughtful selection process will help you to feel that you’ve made the right decision.