We want you to have the best experience possible.
Your visit with an orthopaedic surgeon is an important meeting that can be most effective if you plan ahead. It’s important that you give your doctor the information he or she needs and that you understand what your doctor is recommending.
Research shows that patients who are more involved with their care get better results. Lack of communication is a primary reason for medical errors. The information below will help you and your doctor discuss the issues most important for getting the most out of the visit.
If you have any questions, please contact us. We’re here to help.
- Find out the basics about the office. Where is it? What time should you arrive? If you’re going to drive, where can you park? Do you need to bring your insurance card or a managed care medical referral?
- Find out from your insurance company what your co-pay will be and prepare to bring payment with you. Offices will collect your co-pay upon check-in, so have it ready.
- Schedule your appointment by phone or online. If possible, fill out the Medical History Form (PDF) and give it to the receptionist when you come to see the doctor.
- Assemble your records such as relevant medical records from other physicians; results and copies of X-rays; and other imaging studies and lab tests and personally take the records to the doctor’s office.
- Make written lists of: Medications, herbs, vitamin supplements and over-the-counter medications you are taking. Your medical history, such as prior treatments for heart or thyroid problems or operations, even those not related to your current problem. Your concerns about your condition (pains, loss of mobility or function). All questions you may have.
- Consider asking a friend or family member to accompany you. If you need a translator, ask another adult to come with you; don’t rely on a child to translate.
- Dress appropriately. For spine and many problems involving the arms and legs, you may be asked to disrobe. Wear loose clothing that’s easy to take off and put on.
- Arrive early so you can complete any required forms or tests before meeting with your doctor. You may fill out the Medical History Form(PDF) before arriving. Be prepared to provide your Insurance Card, Co-Pay and ID at check-in.
- Be honest and complete in talking with your doctor. Share your point of view and don’t hold back information about issues such as incontinence, memory loss, sex, or other issues that you might consider embarrassing.
- Stick to the point. It might be fun to share news about the children, but keep it short to get the most out of your time with the doctor.
- Take notes on what the doctor tells you, and ask questions if you don’t understand a medical term, the reason for the doctor’s recommendations or the instructions for taking medication.
- Ask what to expect from your treatment, what effect it will have on your daily activities and what you can do to prevent further disability.
- Ask your doctor for handouts or brochures that you and your family members can review at home. Your doctor may refer you to an Internet web site for more information.
- Talk to the other members of the health care team, too, such as physician assistants, nurses or therapists (speech, physical or occupational) to address any questions or concerns.
- Review the materials the doctor gave you. If you can’t remember something, or if you don’t understand your notes, call the office and speak to a member of your health care team.
- Follow the doctor’s instructions. Take the full course of medication and make sure you follow the prescribed diet or exercise routine. Remember, you’re a part of your health care team too.
- Keep your doctor informed of any changes in your condition.
- Follow up with your doctor on test results, adverse reactions to medication, or any complications or worsening of your condition.
- Why is this procedure being recommended?
- Are there alternatives?
- What are the benefits of this procedure in terms of pain relief, functioning/mobility?
- How long will the benefit last?
- What are the risks involved?
- What is the success rate for this procedure?
- What is the procedure called?
- How is it done?
- Will the surgery need to be repeated after a certain amount of time?
- How many of these procedures are annually performed at this hospital?
- What percentage of patients improve following the procedure?
- What will happen if I don’t have the surgery now?
- If I want a second opinion, whom can I consult?
- Will my doctor perform the operation or someone else?
- If someone else, when can I meet him or her?
- Is the doctor board-certified?
- How many similar procedures have been done by my doctor (or whoever will perform the procedure)?
- What are the outcomes?
- Will I need any tests or medical evaluations prior to the surgery?
- What kind of anesthesia will be used? Are there possible after effects or risks?
- Will I meet with the anesthesiologist in advance?
- Will he or she know my needs/allergies?
- What kind of implant or prosthesis will be used?
- What are the outcomes using this device?
- How long will it last?
- Will I have pain following the procedure?
- What pain relief or pain control measures will I be given?
- How long will the recovery take?
- What are my limitations during recovery?
- Will I need assistance at home afterwards?
- For how long?
- What will discharge instructions be?
- Will I have any disability following surgery?
- Will I need physical therapy?
- When can I return to work?
- When can I drive my car?
- When can I have sexual activity?
- Are there any written materials or videotapes about this surgery that I can review?
As the patient, you should request and/or confirm that the surgeon will preoperatively confirm and mark the surgical site.
I was pleased with the service I received from Elsa Esquivel [in patient accounts]. She helped me with activating my Medicare card for traveling out of state. She was very pleasant, very informative and patient about how to activate my passport on my Medicare. When I was out of state, I happened to get sick and Elsa's information really came in handy. Sending all my gratitude for her services and professionalism.
Just wanted to take a couple of minutes of your time Diana Serafin, Patient Supervisor, to tell you how wonderful you have been to me and my husband. You are such a calming force when everything seems out of control. Thank you for always listening and being there when we needed. My husband calls you his angel. I believe you truly are. You are such a caring person, TOI is very fortunate to have you. My husband and I are fortunate to have met you. Thank you again for all you do. We appreciate you!
Dr. Anctil, Ana and Steve gave me the best customer service. If I had a problem, I would call Ana and she would return my call the same day. My foot has never been better. I am happy with the work Dr. Anctil gave me. I got my bandages wet and they smelled bad so I went to the office and Steve changed out the bandages for a cast on my foot. Everyone was so friendly and helpful, from the receptionist to the checkout ladies.
I went to an urgent care two weeks ago with a fractured toe. To date, the toe is still painful. I did not know TOI had an after hours clinic open from 5 to 9pm. How very fortunate for Tucson. Everyone was friendly and courteous. My PA was excellent and helped me realize the fracture was healing, that the injury had exacerbated a hammer toe and that I still might be able to wear my 4" heels next month at my daughter's wedding!!!
When my daughter hurt her knee during a High School volleyball game, most other offices and specialists were already closed. But not Tucson Ortho with their extended hours urgent care. The staff was very attentive when we called and the customer service was beyond expectations once we arrived. We received the care we needed and the knowledge and compassion of Eddie could not be topped. Thank you Tucson Ortho for offering such an invaluable service and staff in our time of need.