Questions to Ask Your Doctor
The questions below provide a way to discuss your joint pain with your doctor or specialist, and whether you’re a joint replacement candidate. Take them with you to your doctor, and be sure to ask any additional questions you may have to address your concerns:
- Are there any pain relief options for me that could work as well as joint replacement?
- If I have joint replacement, how much will it relieve my pain?
- How is the procedure done?
- What do you do to manage the pain after the surgery?
- What are the risks or complications of joint replacement?
- How long will I be in the hospital, and how soon after having the procedure can I get back to normal daily activities?
- Is joint replacement covered by my insurance?
- After the procedure, will I see you or my regular doctor for follow-up care?
- If I decide to have joint replacement, which company’s product do you think will be best for me? Why?
- If I have joint replacement, will you perform my surgery? How many of these procedures have you performed?
- What kind of activities will I be able to participate in after joint replacement?
Questions From Your Doctor
Ready to see an orthopaedic specialist about joint replacement to relieve your pain? Before you go, consider how you’d answer certain questions he or she may ask. Your specialist should also ask questions about your medical and health history. Of course, you should be as thorough as possible when answering.
- Where is your pain located? Does more than one joint hurt?
- When did the pain first begin? What caused it (if known)?
- Rank your pain on a scale of 1 to 5
- Has the pain gotten worse recently? If so, is it more severe, does it occur more often, or both?
- Does your pain get worse, or occur more often, when you do weight-bearing activities (Example: walking), at rest, or at night?
- Are you taking any medication for the pain? (Make a list of both prescription and non-prescription medications.)
- Are you taking any dietary supplements? (Make a list of vitamins or other “pills” for arthritis, such as chondroitin or glucosamine.)
- How far can you walk without support? With support?
- Can you climb stairs comfortably without help? Do you need to go very slowly and carefully?
- How physically active are you?
- What tests have previously been done to evaluate your joint pain?