Questions to Ask Before Spinal Surgery


The decision to consult with New York spine specialists to schedule a surgical procedure will take a tremendous amount of thought and consideration. Therefore, it can be helpful to have some questions you can ask, and in this article, we will provide some questions to help you guide the discussion.

Is Surgery the Right Way?

It doesn’t hurt to ask your New York spine specialists if there are any non-surgical options that might help your condition. To help determine if this surgery should be next step, ask if all your options have been exhausted already and what the pros and cons to each method are. You can also ask your doctor if there is any specialist that you can consult in order to get a second opinion. You will want to know what surgery is being recommended, what it entails, and why your doctor believes this procedure will help. Ask your New York spine specialists what the course of your condition will be if is not surgically corrected.

Get to the Root of the Problem

Ask your doctor what the cause of your pain is and how he or she knows this. Ask your doctor if they would recommend this same procedure as the right solution if they were speaking to a friend. Ask them to detail the condition that you have. Find out what the expected outcome of the surgery is and what your doctor thinks you should be able to do afterward. How is your quality of life expected to improve after the recommended procedure, and what is the rate of success?

Risks and Complications

Ask if there any side effects or risks that can happen and what the odds are that these will happen to you. If complications should arise, find out how your doctor plans to handle this, and ask what he or she plans to do if a different problem is encountered than what was expected. Will you be required to donate your own blood, and if so how much and when? Are there any long-term consequences or life changes that will be caused by this procedure?

Qualifications and Background

Will your doctor be the only one who is performing the operation, or are there others who will be helping him or her? Will your doctor be including students or interns, and if so, what will their role be? What are their qualifications and background? Will another surgeon be needed to complete the procedure, and if so, what will be his or her duties? Ask your doctor how many times he or she has performed this procedure and whether he or she is eligible to be or has been board certified.

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