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Discussing Surgery With Your Doctor
Having surgery is a very significant step in the treatment of dystonia.
If you are considering surgery or if surgery has been recommended to you by a movement disorder specialist, consider discussing the following questions with your doctors:
- What is the name of the operation and what does the name mean?
- Why is this specific surgery appropriate for my case?
- What are the advantages of having surgery?
- What benefits might I expect?
- What are the risks?
- What happens if I don't have the surgery? Are their alternative treatments?
- Where can I get a second opinion?
- What is the experience of the medical center and surgeon with this procedure?
- Does the medical team publish the results of surgical case studies?
- Where will the surgery be done?
- What kind of anesthetic will be used (general or local)?
- How long is the recovery and what rehabilitation/physical therapy is necessary?
- Will the procedure reduce the need for oral medications or botulinum neurotoxin injections?
- Is there a chance the surgery will need to be repeated?
- How much will the surgery cost and who will pay for it?
Surgical procedures may improve function and better the lives of patients who do not receive adequate relieve from medications and/or botulinum toxin injections. A patient who is considering surgery must weigh the opportunity for benefit and the risk of complications. Careful discussions with movement disorder specialists and being as knowledgeable as possible about dystonia and surgery may help in the consideration process. The DMRF can provide names and contact information of dystonia specialists.
Accelerating Research & Inspiring Hope
The Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF) has served the dystonia community since 1976. Join us in our global effort to find a cure.