Getting a Second Opinion

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Cardiac Surgery

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Heart surgery is a serious procedure, one that you want to approach knowing you did all your homework to find the best surgeon, hospital and overall treatment plan.

At the Swedish Heart and Vascular Institute, we’re happy to give second opinions to patients who are considering heart surgery at another hospital. And we support our own patients in seeking another opinion if that will give them additional peace of mind.

You may want a second opinion if:

  • you have a complicated or unusual heart condition
  • your medications are no longer working and you now need surgery
  • you already had surgery that did not correct your condition
  • your surgeon suggests open heart and you want to learn more about minimally invasive surgery
  • you want confirmation of your test results and more information about your heart condition.

While you might feel a bit hesitant to get a second opinion because you don’t want to offend your surgeon, remember that the vast majority of physicians actually welcome second opinions. A second opinion can validate your surgeon’s own thinking and provide additional information to improve your proposed treatment plan.

Getting a Second Opinion

Here at Swedish we see many heart surgery patients seeking a second opinion. If you’d like a second opinion from us, call us at 206-320-7300 for an appointment. We’ll do our best to assure a prompt appointment (usually within a few days) with one of our four cardiac surgeons.

What to Ask

When getting a second opinion, consider asking these questions:

  • Have you reviewed all the reports and images related to my case?
  • Were the images and test results sufficient to make a firm diagnosis?
  • Would another test or procedure give more complete information?
  • If you agree with the initial diagnosis, can you recommend any revisions to the proposed treatment plan?
  • Can you reassure me that we have explored all options?

Who to Call

If you’d like a second opinion from Swedish, call 206-320-7300. We’ll help you determine which surgeon you should see and help set up an appointment. We can also arrange for medical records, images and lab reports to be sent to the right place.