When it comes to people you trust, your medical caregivers probably fall somewhere near the top of that list. Because medical professionals undergo extensive training and education to get where they are, it is not uncommon to take them at their word, and in many cases, no harm is caused in doing so.
Doctors, however, are only human, and they, too, make mistakes. There are several situations in which you may be wise to follow your gut instinct about your health. Doing so may involve consulting a second physician to see if his or her diagnosis or recommended method of treatment closely aligns with that of the first, and you may find it beneficial to do so if:
You are advised to undergo a non-emergency surgical procedure
If your doctor or specialist uncovers something serious enough to warrant immediate emergency surgery, it is generally wise to heed this advice. If, however, your doctor tells you that you need to have a non-emergency surgical procedure, this may be a good time to seek a second opinion. Surgery has risks and any surgery has the capacity to cause you physical or emotional distress.
You feel you need more time or attention
Physicians follow hectic schedules and they are often pressured to see many patients throughout the day. To make an accurate assessment of your condition, you need time to clearly articulate your symptoms. If you feel you did not have the opportunity to have your voice truly heard, you may find it useful to consult a second doctor.
Your gut tells you something else
Yes, your doctor is a trained medical professional. However, he or she is not inside your body, feeling your symptoms and experiencing your struggles, so you may be wise to follow your own instincts if you suspect something is wrong and are informed otherwise.
Medical errors, misdiagnoses and failures to diagnose happen all the time. If you are a victim, consider getting in touch with an attorney.