Brain surgery is performed to treat a wide variety of conditions, including brain tumor operation, blood clots, Parkinson’s disease, and epilepsy. Brain surgery should not be taken lightly.
As said, knowledge is power, so before agreeing on going through the surgery, it is important to obtain as much knowledge about the procedure. This includes the preparation, risk, success, recovery, and prognosis.
Ask whatever you feel is right. These questions will help you understand if surgery is the best treatment option for you. Besides this, you need to do proper research about the surgeon also to ensure that you are in safe hands.
Here are a few frequently asked questions about brain surgery:-
It is necessary to have a basic understanding of the whole procedure you are going through. This question may generate other questions also. For instance, if your doctor says he/she will be opening your skull during the surgery, you can ask them what kind of pain you will have to experience post-surgery, how you can deal with that pain, and how long your wound will take to heal etc.
The more experienced the brain surgeon is, the more comfortable you become to go under the knife. Besides the number of years of experience, try to find out more about the actual procedure he has performed. Don’t forget to ask about the success rate.
To gain knowledge about the risk and benefits, manage expectations. You should understand the risks, benefits, and complications involved in surgery to prepare yourself for post-surgery complications. Even if your brain surgery is 100 percent successful, residual pain, numbness, or some other lost neurological functions are possible.
In some minor brain surgeries, you may be able to go home on the same day, while other procedures may require you to stay back at the hospital for a longer duration. You should also ask your surgeon when you can resume your day-to-day activities such as driving and exercise. Make sure you follow all the instructions given by your surgeon.
Expectations that are managed poorly are the common reason for stress during the course of surgery and recovery. Ask all the possible questions about your brain surgery before going under the knife, including recovery time, post-surgery pain, medications, etc.
These questions will give you a realistic expectation of your recovery time. Hence, you will not be in for unexpected surprises, and you and your doctor’s expectations will be in sync.
Inform the doctor about all the medications you have been taking and review the list of medicines you should not take before surgery. Few drugs such as aspirin and Plavix, which are used to prevent blood clots, may need to be stopped a week before any type of brain surgery.
Ask questions like how long before you should stop drinking and eating. Also, confirm with the doctor whether you can drink a sip of water with the medications or not during the day of the surgery.
After surgery, you need to follow the instructions given by your physician to avoid future complications. Depending on the surgical process and your condition, your mobility may or may not be affected in some way after the surgery. Have a realistic idea of what to expect during or after surgery.
Having an idea about the surgery cost can help you arrange money for your surgery. If you have any health insurance, find out whether the hospital falls in that category or not. Find out whether the radiation therapist bills or pathology department bills are covered by your health insurance plan or not. If there is no insurance, ask doctors about the total cost of your brain surgery.
Keep asking questions until you have clarity. Brain tumor operation is not a minor surgery; go for it when you have clarity in mind and know all the pros and cons of the surgery. Give your best to improve the likelihood and a positive outcome.