No matter how good you are at something, having another trusted set of eyes or hands to offer an opinion or other feedback can be extremely valuable. On one side of the table, even the most well-trained professionals are still human beings. On the other side, it’s never a bad idea to gather as much information as possible before making a big decision. That’s why we welcome second opinions at Southern California Foot & Ankle. Maybe you’ve already received a diagnosis or treatment recommendation from another doctor, but you aren’t quite comfortable with the response. Or maybe we’re the first opinion and you want confirmation from someone else! Either way, second opinions are something we encourage, and we’re happy to either give them ourselves or refer you to other specialists for them.
Why You Might Want a Second OpinionThere are many reasons to consider receiving a second opinion about your foot and ankle care. Here are some of the big ones:
- Peace of mind. Most people we treat aren’t foot or ankle experts. We, or another doctor, may give you our opinions, but aside from trusting our expertise you have no way of knowing whether that advice is sound or not. Getting a second opinion to confirm the original diagnosis and treatment course can give you the confidence and peace of mind that you’re on the right track.
- Self-education. At our office, we make patient education a top priority. We love to spend time talking with our patients, answering their questions, and explaining their condition and options as best we can. At the same time, hearing the same information from multiple physicians with different communication styles may help you learn or remember better, gain more knowledge, and make more informed decisions.
- Evaluating your options. When it comes to the feet and ankles, there may be several appropriate treatment options for certain conditions. Different specialists might have slightly different opinions about the best course of action, or have different technologies or techniques that they can provide. That doesn’t necessarily mean that one doctor is “right” and the other is “wrong”! Very likely, both treatments could work. But it may be the case that one of the two is a better fit for your personal, practical needs or lifestyle.
- Protecting yourself against misdiagnosis. Doctors are humans. We’re exceptionally well trained and dedicated, but there’s always a chance mistakes can be made. Getting a second opinion is a wise precaution, especially before treatment protocols that could have lifelong or life-changing consequences.