The journey towards resolving endometriosis involves an important decision – selecting the right surgeon. Leveraging expert resources like Nancy’s Nook and iCareBetter can be instrumental in this process.
Determining Your Needs in a Surgeon
Being aware of your specific requirements can help you make an informed choice. Here are a few considerations you should keep in mind:
Training and Experience
A surgeon’s training, notably in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery (MIGS) or Fellowship in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery (FMIGS) is crucial. Such surgeons have spent more time in operation theaters, honing their skills through extensive practice.
Ensure your surgeon is board-certified and inquire about their experience, including the number of surgeries they’ve performed, complications they’ve encountered, and outcomes.
Surgical Support Team
The surgeon’s team is equally important. Ask about their procedure in case of bowel, bladder, ureter, or diaphragmatic involvement. Inquire if everything can be done during a single procedure.
Approach to Excision
Surgeons may have different opinions on excision versus ablation. Find out their thoughts on the subject and where and when they excise or ablate.
Ask if the surgeon routinely prescribes suppressive medications pre and post-surgery. Understand their reasons if they do.
Don’t hesitate to inquire about costs, insurance acceptance, payment policies, and any hidden charges.
Ensure you feel comfortable conversing with your surgeon and that your queries are answered satisfactorily.
Factors That May Not Influence Your Decision
Certain aspects may not influence the quality of surgical care:
- Gender: The surgeon’s gender does not impact their surgical ability.
- Preferred Tools: The surgical tool used is less important than the surgeon’s skill.
- Bowel Prep: Surgeons may have different preferences for bowel prep before surgery, but it doesn’t seem to influence the outcome.
Factors That Might Influence Your Decision
Some factors might play a role in your decision-making process:
- Reputation: Be cautious while considering a surgeon’s reputation. Some may get media coverage or have excellent bedside manners, but that doesn’t necessarily make them a skilled surgeon.
- Office Management: A well-managed front office can make your experience smoother.
- Location: Depending on your comfort and ability to travel, location might influence your decision.
- Timing: The availability of the surgeon and your urgency might also play a role.
The Most Important Factor
Patients often report being most satisfied with surgeons who actively listen to them. Your surgeon should respect your knowledge and experiences without objection to being recorded or having someone with you during consultations.
Leading Endometriosis Specialists
iCareBetter has a list of endometriosis specialists and surgeons vetted for their surgical skills. Nancy’s Nook on Facebook also provides a list of providers.
Managing Your Relationship with Your Current Doctor
Dealing with a current doctor who might not be capable of handling your endometriosis can be challenging. Here are some tips:
- Think long-term, maintain a cordial relationship, and educate your doctor about your condition without alienating them.
- Be respectful and considerate of your doctor’s opinions.
- Try to keep your doctor on your side by asking for their support.
- Remain calm and collected during discussions.
- If you choose to seek surgery elsewhere and decide not to return to your current physician, send a copy of the operative and pathology reports with a note of gratitude.
- If your doctor dismisses you as a patient, consider it as a sign that it wasn’t a good fit.
- Routine care can be handled by a GP or Family Doctor, a Nurse Practitioner, or a Physician’s Assistant.
Remember, in addition to iCareBetter, which has a peer-reviewed video vetted group of endometriosis surgeons, Nancy’s Nook also provides a list of providers to help you navigate this journey.
Choosing an endometriosis specialist is a significant step on your health journey. Leveraging resources like Nancy’s Nook and iCareBetter can provide valuable insights to guide your decision. Always remember, your comfort and trust in your healthcare provider are paramount.