Whether inpatient or outpatient, HCA Midwest Health understands that there's no such thing as "routine" surgery and that patients and their families are concerned about surgical care. We work closely with patients, families and doctors to be sure that every question is answered and every concern addressed—including advice on how to prepare for your surgery, what to expect during your treatment and the best ways to make a fast, full recovery.

Some surgery must be performed immediately, usually because an emergency has required it. But the majority of surgeries are elective surgeries—they are planned, non-emergency procedures. They may be medically necessary (eg, cataract surgery) or optional (eg, breast augmentation). If your doctor recommends you have an elective surgery, you should carefully weigh the risks and benefits of the procedure and make sure it is right for you.

Finding the Right Doctor and Hospital

It is important to feel comfortable with the doctor who will be performing your surgery. You can work with your primary care provider and/or healthcare plan to find a doctor who has the training, experience, and professional manner to meet your needs.

One factor you may want to consider in choosing a surgeon is where she practices. Look for a hospital that has a lot of experience and success in treating your condition. Ideally, the hospital should be accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) and be rated highly by government and consumer organizations devoted to evaluating quality of care.

Even after you have found a doctor you are comfortable with, you may want to get a second opinion. Your doctor or health plan provider can help you find someone to provide a second opinion. Friends and coworkers may also know of doctors they can recommend. Before you go for a second opinion, check with your insurance company to see if it will pay for the consultation. And be sure to bring your records from your first doctor.

Asking the Right Questions

Once you find the right surgeon for you, this list of questions may be helpful to ask when deciding whether to have an elective surgery.

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