If you’re scheduled for surgery, you’ll probably feel very nervous. However, you’ll feel more relaxed if you meet your doctor or surgeon and ask them some questions. Of course, you want to know what to expect and how to prepare. Also, informed patients tend to be more satisfied with the results of the procedure. You should ask the following essential questions before having surgery.

What is the procedure being recommended?

Request your healthcare provider to walk you through the steps. Find out the different techniques for the procedure and why your surgeon prefers one approach over the other. Also, enquire about the type of anesthesia they’ll use to keep you free from pain.

Why is the procedure needed?

The reasons for undergoing a procedure vary: preventing pain, improving body function, or diagnosing a problem. Ask why your surgeon recommends the operation. Ensure you understand how the operation will improve your condition.

Are there any alternatives to the procedure?

Inquire if there are other treatment options available based on your health condition. Sometimes, medicine or nonsurgical treatments like lifestyle changes may improve your health, as would the procedure. Find out the benefits and the risks of these alternatives to help you make an informed decision on whether or not to have the operation.

What are the benefits of the procedure?

Your surgeon should explain to you the specific benefits of undergoing the procedure. Find out how long the benefits will last. Some benefits last a lifetime, while others last a short time and could require a second procedure.

What will happen before the procedure?

Ask your healthcare provider for tips to prepare for the surgery. Ensure you know if you need to take some tests before the operation. Find out if you’ll need to take certain medicines and if you should stop eating or drinking some hours before the procedure.

What should I expect during recovery?

Find out the activities you can or can’t do after the operation. You may require time off from work or get help for caring for yourself or your little ones. Inquire from your doctor about how long you will stay in the hospital and need physical therapy. Find out the period it will take to achieve a full recovery and tips to help with your recovery.

What are some of the complications after the operation?

Every surgery has some risks, and you’ll need to weigh the risks before the procedure. Ask your doctor to elaborate on the possible complications like infections, bleeding, and side effects after the procedure. Ensure you know when to seek immediate medical attention or notify your doctor of potential complications. Ask about pain and how to manage pain that may arise after the procedure.

What can I expect during recovery?

Ask your doctor what to expect in the initial days after the procedure and the weeks to follow. It’s also vital to know how long you’ll stay in the hospital. Next, find out what limitations your doctor will place on you and any special equipment or supply you will need when discharged. Finally, ask how long you should expect to recover fully.

What are the costs of the operation?

Health plans vary in what they cover in different procedures, and there are costs for which you may be responsible. You need to know the exact cost of the operation and how much your health plan will cover. While this information is often unavailable to the doctor, their office can help or call your insurance provider.