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Be Smart and Proactive in Your Healthcare Decisions

proactive healthcare decisionsHaving worked in healthcare field as a Physician for more than 20 years, I see many patients still unquestionably accept any medical advice as the gospel truth, even in the western world. I suggest the following list of questions, to ask your doctor especially before an elective procedure on your body.

Questions about the diagnosis

  • What is my diagnosis (What is wrong with me)?
  • How serious is this condition?

Questions about prognosis

  • What may happen to me if I leave this untreated?

Questions about treatment

  • Can this be treated with medications?
  • If procedure necessary, is it for diagnosis or treatment or for both?
  • If procedure used for treatment, is it superior to treatment with medications alone?

Questions about the procedure

  • Can you explain the procedure?
  • What are the chances that the procedure will be successful in my case?
  • What are the immediate and long term risks of the procedure?
  • Will the benefits of the procedure be temporary or last long?
  • Will this procedure make me live longer or make me feel better?
  • If your close relative were in my position, would you recommend this for him/her?
  • Could you recommend some reference information on this that I could read or watch?

It is good to get a second opinion before making major medical decisions. An ethical doctor would welcome it.