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Choosing the right surgeon to treat cervical spine tumors is obviously not a simple decision. Even though the internet may provide a wealth of information on surgeons, such as reviews and ratings, the decision should not be made based on those criteria alone.

Any spine surgery, including even a minimally invasive procedure such as a microdiscectomy, is not just a routine procedure. In fact, most spine surgeries are actually a series of complicated techniques. Therefore, you want to take your time and do your due diligence so that you can make the best and most informed decision when choosing your surgeon.

Before you begin your research, you’ll want to prepare a list of criteria that you can use as a guideline. Following these criteria will enable you to narrow down your search and ultimately find the right surgeon to treat cervical spine tumors for yourself or for a loved one.

Find a Specialist

To start with, you’ll want a surgeon that actually specializes in spinal surgery and spine tumors. A specialist will have the expertise and experience to ensure that complications are minimal.

You can take advantage of ratings and review sites to find a good listing of cervical spine tumor specialists to start with. This is when you want to start looking at the reviews in order to narrow down your list of possibilities even more. Obviously, if you find that a particular surgeon has too many negative reviews, you’ll eliminate them from your list. Once you have a good list, you can move on to the next criteria.

Schedule Meetings With the Surgeons

In addition to finding a surgeon with plenty of experience, you also want to pick a surgeon that you generally feel comfortable with. Meeting the specialist face to face is a great way to feel them out, and it also gives you the opportunity to ask the most important questions. If, for some reason, you cannot meet the surgeon in person, then try to schedule a video call, or at the very least, email your list of questions.

Important Questions to Ask

First and foremost, you should ask how many times the surgeon has performed surgeries related to cervical spine tumors, and what were the outcomes? (Just because the surgeon specializes in that particular type of surgery does not necessarily mean they excel at it). Any capable surgeon should have no problem telling you his or her success rate.

Certification is also important. Ask the surgeon if they are board-certified. If meeting the surgeon in person, you’ll most likely see the certificate in the surgeon’s office.

Ask about your options. Just because one physician recommended a particular surgical procedure doesn’t mean it is the best one for you. You want a surgeon who will take the time to explain all your options, as well as the pros and cons of each, so that you have a full understanding of why one particular surgery is recommended over another, and what you can expect before, during and after the surgery.

When asking questions, make note of how the surgeon acts and answers. Is the surgeon defensive or open and forthcoming? Does the surgeon beat around the bush and gloss over details, or explain everything thoroughly?

Use Other Sources for Continued Research

In addition to review sites, you can also seek out former patients and ask them their own opinions of the surgeon. You might gain further insight and be able to narrow down the list even more. You can also ask the nurses or the Nursing Director in the hospital or medical facility. While they probably won’t talk badly about any particular surgeon, if they all tend to favor one surgeon, chances are he or she is the most capable of performing the surgery successfully.

After doing all of the above, you might have a pretty good idea of which surgeon to choose for your cervical spine tumors surgery. If you are still unsure, you can meet with the remaining surgeons again and delve deeper into their skills and technique.

To best assess the surgeon’s skill, you can ask them some tough questions, such as who they would recommend if their own parents needed surgery? A capable and experienced surgeon won’t be afraid to let you get a second opinion either, and you can ask the surgeon who they might recommend for another opinion.

Take this time to be sure you fully understand all your options, and which types of procedures or surgeries the surgeon recommends most and why. As not all spinal surgeries are always necessary, you might want to seek a second opinion as well, just to be sure you are a good candidate for spinal surgery.

Obviously, all of this research takes time, but an important and potentially life-changing decision such as this is not to be taken lightly. Do your due diligence to be sure you make the right choice for the best chance of a successful outcome.

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