November 29, 2008

questions to ask before surgery

This is a list based on my research and preferences. I am not a doctor nor do I work in the medical field. It is in no particular order of importance. You will have to decide which ones are the most important for you. This is just for information and it is not conclusive. (how is that for a disclaimer?)

- How long has the dr. been performing trs? (more experience = more knowledge)
- How many does he/she do a week or for the year on avg.? (practice makes perfect)
- How old is the doc? How is her/his health?
- Is a microscope used during surgery or are loopes? (my preference is micro.)
- Does the doc. use a dye injected into the newly repaired tubes during surgery? (good for checking potency of tubes)
- How long is the surgery?
- How is the incision closed? (steri-strips, staples, or disolvable sutures. I prefer steri-strips)
- Are post op pain meds included in the price?
- What pre-op tests are required? Are those included in the price?
- Does the doc have additional training in Reproduction and Endocrinology? Do they have additional training in reproductive surgery past ob/gyn degree? (more education = more knowledge)
- Do they sew tubes in 1 layer, 2 outer layers individually or all 3 individually? (sewing outer 2 layers individually is good. If interior lining of tube is not sewn there is less chance for scar tissue to build up. Scar tissue on interior lining of tubes will result in increased chances of an ectopic preg.)
- Does the doc use a stint? (stints are very, very bad. stay away from them like the black plague)
- What type of suture is used for closing the tubes? (Nylon or vicryl are good. Nylon will not dissolve, but it has the least reactionary properties of all the sutures. Vicryl will dissolve, but it does require the body to react to it in order to dissolve.)
- How large is the incision? (smaller the better for recovery, scar tissue build up, and adhesion)
- What type of anesthesia is used?
- Is the procedure done in a surgical center or a hospital? (hospital is better if you have any conditions which may make the surgery a little higher risk, like high bp, heart conditions, etc.)
- What is the infection rate of that center or hospital? (some states require this to be public knowledge)
- Is there any kind of guarantee or refund if the tubes are inoperable or are closed after 1 yr. and no pregnancy? Or is there any kind of additional help (like meds) if having trouble conceiving?
- How long has the surgical assistant been working with the doc? How many yrs. experience do they have?
- What is the soonest apt. available?
- What are the docs surgery days? (if you must go out of town, this may be a deciding factor)
- What is the distance in miles or time to the doc?
- How accessible is the doc? Is he/she willing/able to answer your questions?
- If the doc gets in and finds other problems such as cysts or adhesion, do they address those issues while they are in there?
- After the doc has your op report and pathology report. Ask them what their best guess success rate would be with you?
- How much in total will this cost? Specifically find out the cost for the doc, anesthesia and anesthesiologist,and hospital or surgical center. Some docs have been known to say "full price" or "all-included" and they just meant their fees.

list compiled by Christine (FTBU)

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