Finding the right doctor isn't easy. You want a physician with great medical skills, but also a good beside manner. America's most famous physician, Dr. Mehmet Oz, spoke about how to find Dr. Right.
Dr. Oz says too often we feel like we have don't have any control over what happens when we step into an examination room. He says we can change that, and become a more active partner in our care. It starts with finding the right doctor, and asking the right questions.
Whether your doctor is saying it's cancer or heart disease, Dr. Oz says always ask for a second opinion.
"One out of three times, when you get a second opinion, it will change the diagnosis or the therapy," said Dr. Oz. "And yet only about 10 percent of us do that. 'Oh, it's a minor procedure.' A minor procedure is something that's happening to someone else. If it's happening to you, it's not minor, it's big time."
Some patients may think that if they ask their doctor for a second opinion, they are doubting their doctor.
"There are some times when physicians will be offended by that. You probably have the wrong doctor then," said Dr. Oz.
Oz says you want a physician who will treat you like a partner,
"Remember, the word doctor means teacher. You don't sit there with your teacher and passively wait for the answers, you interact, you engage. When a doctor sees you're interested, you're going to be part of the solution, they like that," said Dr. Oz.
So, what is the warning sign that a doctor may not be right for you?
"If you don't feel valued by the doctor, if you feel dismissed. If you don't feel heard, you need to find another doctor. Do not blame yourself," replied Dr. Oz.
To find the right doctor, go online and compare local hospitals. Also, find out who has the most cutting edge care, and the best safety record.
"Make sure your doctor has the right to practice in those hospitals, because good hospitals will only let good doctors practice in them," said Dr. Oz.
If you really want the scoop on doctors, Oz says ask an emergency room nurse.
"And say, ‘if you're a patient like me, need care for problem XYZ, who would you see?' Their knowledge about doctors is deep, because they see doctors at all hours of the day at their best, and at their worst,"
You may have heard that it's a good idea to write down your questions and concerns before your appointment. Dr. Oz says go one step more, make a copy of that list and give it to your doctor. He or she can take a look at it later, perhaps do a little homework, and then answer your questions by e-mail.
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