• how do i find out information about my surgeon

    Asked by janets on Sunday, July 22, 2012

    how do i find out information about my surgeon

    how would i go about getting statistics on the success rate of my surgeon. i am starting chemo for 3 cycles of 3 weeks each and them am going to have my bladder removed. what are the questions i should ask my surgeon about his expwerienc e with this type of surgery and should i gwet a sec ond opinion. i have t2 bladder cancer

    11 Answers from the Community

    11 answers
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      I don't think anyone keeps viewable records on success rates of particular surgeons, except for the surgeon. We went on word-of-mouth recommendation. There are websites where you can look to see if anyone has left ratings or comments about doctors if you do a search for physician ratings. http://www.healthgrades.com/ and http://www.vitals.com/ are two examples.

      Depending on what state you're in, The Department of Health may have a way for you to view the physician's license status and profile online. It looks like you're in Florida where I am. Here in Florida, that provides additional details about education and residency, how long they have been practicing, as well as a few other items. http://ww2.doh.state.fl.us/IRM00profiling/searchform.ASP

      Through the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, there's also a searchable database of prior settlements for malpractice claims. https://apps.fldfs.com/PLCR/Search/MPLClaim.aspx

      over 4 years ago
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      (If they have been in practice for a long time, and don't have any licensing issues, lawsuits, or complaints, that can be a good sign.)

      over 4 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      First of all, getting a second opinion has nothing to do with assessing the competence of a doctor. A second opinion is getting another opinion on a medical interpretation of test results or treatment recommendations. If you have reasons to suspect that bladder removal may not be you best medical option, then by all means get a second opinion, but whether or not that results in the same or different treatment recommendation has nothing to do with the surgical competence of either physician.

      I really don't think there is any useful "success rate" for surgeons. Does success mean the patient didn't die on the table or does it mean the patient was cured of cancer? Either way doesn't necessarily have anything to do with the competence of the surgeon. You can certainly asked the surgeon how many times he has performed the surgery and if has any outstanding malpractice claims. If you were referred to this surgeon by your MO, then ask your MO why he/she does referrals to this surgeon.

      over 4 years ago
    • PhillieG's Avatar

      Watch America's Most Wanted?
      Seriously, I'd get a second opinion to see if the opinions match up. As FreeBird posted, there are ranking sites but I don't know how accurate they are. I looked up my Onc on one of them and she got a 3.1 out of 4. I'd give her a 10!

      What I looked for in choosing an oncologist was where they went to school and their age. I wasn't interested in doctors we rescued from Granada in the 1980s or ones who were too old to be set in their ways or too young to still be wet behind the ears...

      It's not an exact science by any means.
      Good luck!

      over 4 years ago
    • Madison's Avatar

      in my job, one of the things we do is check on doctors and we do rely on Healthgrades, it's at www.healthgrades.com
      the way I picked our oncologist was to ask our surgeon who he thought was the best. Our surgeon was highly rated as one of the best whipple surgeons in our area.
      Word of mouth, especially from people in the health field helps alot.
      good luck

      over 4 years ago
    • LeeAnna's Avatar

      I have found that the cancer hospital has bio's on the docs I've used and google is another source. However, my primary care provider has another website he uses. I asked him to review the doc and give me his opinion. He was more than willing. Good luck, hope this helps. You'll get to the other side.

      over 4 years ago
    • Blue's Avatar

      I think another asset to look for is to find a Surgeon who has had successful results with several bladder removal surgeries. Practice makes perfect.

      over 4 years ago
    • carm's Avatar

      You ask the office manager if you can have the names of two people who have had similar surgery. Tell the manager that you just want to know what to expect after the surgery. You can also check your states' professional license look-up to see if the doctor has been sanctioned. Healthgrades is good as well but really, if you want to be sure just google the doctor and ask. Googling for example, "bad experience with Dr Smith" might turn up cases that are of public record or posts on blog sites where people have complained. If you get Cure magazine you can go to the patient advocate site, www.patientadvocate.org. and ask if they have any information. If you want to see the type of surgery you are having, go to orlive.com and join for free, there you can type in the surgery or treatment and you can see it performed as well as physicians answering questions about that surgery. It is a great site and it will put your mind at ease. Good Luck!

      over 4 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      If a doctor's office manager gave me the names of two other patients that have had similar surgery, I would definitely find another doctor. That is against the law.

      over 4 years ago
    • IKickedIt's Avatar

      Talk to other professionals in the medical field. I talked with my GP, my OB/GYN, family friends who are doctors in any field. I am normally not a person to really "talk to strangers," but I was calling everyone and anyone who offered help. Out of all my doctors, I liked my surgeon the least as a person. Watching paint dry would have been more interesting that talking to him. But, every single person I talked to, from doctors to nurses and others in the community, all told me that he was the best surgeon in the field with the lowest infection rate, quickest surgery time, and fewest complications. Sure enough, thank goodness, his surgical skills far exceeded his social skills and I had no complications.

      about 4 years ago
    • Judi228's Avatar

      Try : www. (the state's two letter abreviation) state physician profile.com ( NYSPhysicianProfile.com)
      I'm in NY and I have looked up Florida doctors for my parents who lived in FL. At this website in NY there is also a link to whether the doctor has ever had any action against their license. Keep searching, just don't be fooled by some of the websites that the doctor could put whatever he wants

      about 4 years ago

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