Your health care team
Once you begin preparing for surgery, you will be part of a team that includes:
- Your main physician
- The surgeon who will perform your procedure
- Specialists such as psychologists and dietitians
It's important for you to feel comfortable with the entire team. Take the time to find a well-qualified surgeon with a supportive staff. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about their practice and experience, your post-surgery life, and any other concerns.
These are the top criteria for choosing a surgeon:
- Center of Excellence (COE) designation. This means they have completed rigorous training, perform a number of surgeries per year, and use quality surgery equipment.
- Substantial experience in successful gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy, and gastric banding procedures.
- Confidence in your bariatric surgeon established by asking questions and speaking to previous patients.
- Comfort with your surgeon’s staff, to help keep you at ease, motivated, and on-track.
- A surgeon within your insurance network to help reduce out-of-pocket costs.
Once you’ve chosen a health care team, you’ll work together to find the best treatment for you. When it comes to choosing your treatment, you play a vital role. You should feel comfortable asking any questions, big or small, and know that your team is there to support you. The more you know about your condition and your procedure, the more empowered you may feel.
To get the most out of your appointments:
- Come prepared. Bring lists, logs, or questions. Take notes. Check off items to make sure you discuss each one. Note items that need follow-up.
- Speak up. If a medicine isn’t helping or you aren’t feeling satisfied with your treatment, tell your doctor. You can work together to adjust your plan. Don't be afraid to voice your opinion or concerns. Your doctor can only improve your relationship or treatment if they know there’s a problem.
- Be persistent. If you don’t feel like your questions are answered or your concerns are heard, ask again. You might also ask about other sources of information.