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Shay & Associates

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Protect your interests before you have surgery
Timothy Shay

If your doctor recommends a surgical procedure, it is because you have a medical need that requires surgical intervention. Even with a pressing medical need, it takes a significant amount of trust to go under the knife and trust your doctor with your life. It’s normal to feel nervous and unsure about what is going to happen, but there are things you can do to protect your interests and give yourself more peace of mind.

It’s important that you know what will happen and what you should expect. There are also important legal and financial issues to consider before having surgery. Before your appointment, make sure you have asked the right questions and have the information you need to feel confident about your procedure. As the patient, you have certain rights, and you would be wise to take steps to protect your interests.

What questions should you ask?

In order to get the information you need before surgery, you may find it necessary to ask your doctors, care providers and hospital administration certain questions. Some of the things you may find important to ask include the following:

  • How much will it cost? Your insurance may not cover the entire procedure and post-surgery stay. You should know what you have to pay out of pocket so that you don’t end up with unexpected medical bills.
  • What are the risks? All surgeries come with at least a minor risk. Speak with your surgeon about the dangers associated with your procedure and what he or she will do to keep you as safe as possible.
  • What will happen? You have the right to know exactly what will happen during the surgery from the moment you are asleep. You also should know what to expect when you wake up and what the projected outcome should be.

You have the right to ask questions and inform yourself as much as reasonably possible before you agree to surgery. If you have any concerns, you should discuss these with your doctor before you make any important decisions.

Unexpected outcomes

It is possible that your surgery did not go as expected. Unexpected outcomes may sometimes happen due to negligence or error during surgery or with post-operative care. If you are experiencing pain and suffering because something went wrong while you were under the care of an Illinois doctor, you could have grounds to move forward with a medical malpractice claim.