Questions to Ask Your Surgeon

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  • What kind of surgery do you recommend for me?  
  • Why do I need to have this procedure?
  • How much of my breast will be removed?
  • What are the risks and side effects of this surgery?
  • What are the risks if I decide not to have this surgery?
  • What are my options for anesthesia?
  • What are the risks of anesthesia?
  • What kind of incision am I going to have?
  • Will I have a lymph node dissection? If so, how many nodes will be removed?
  • What should I know about taking care of my arm after lymph node dissection?
  • Will you come to see me after surgery?
  • How will I feel after surgery? Will I need pain medication?
  • What kind of care will my incision need after surgery?
  • Will surgical drains be placed in my chest/underarm area? If so, what do I need to know about them?
  • Will I have stitches that need to be removed later?
  • How long will I stay in the hospital after the surgery?
  • What should I do if I feel like I need more time in the hospital than my insurance will allow?
  • How much time should I expect to allow for recovery at home?
  • Are there physical therapy exercises I should do after surgery? Do you have any information about exercises that I can take with me?
  • How often will I see you for follow-up care after surgery?
  • If I have a mastectomy, will I be able to have breast reconstruction?
  • When will you have the results of my pathology tests? Will I come in to discuss them, or will we talk over the phone?
  • Will my medical insurance cover all charges from you and the hospital?

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