Is the cure worse than the disease?

Ms. Meniscus,Is the cure worse than the disease

I have rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and my doctor wants to replace my hip. I’m too scared and don’t want to have it done. My family is pressuring me to do it, too. What can I say to get them to shut up about it?

Limping and liking it.

Dear Limping,

I can’t imagine that you actually like to limp, but I do see how you may prefer it to an invasive surgery with a potentially long and painful recovery time. But think about the alternative. If your doctor is telling you that this procedure is necessary, your joint may be so far deteriorated that you have no other option.

Getting a hip replacement is not a light matter, and your doctor should be able to explain to you exactly why you should have it if he or she believes you need one. If you don’t want to have it done for another reason (let’s say your schedule can’t accommodate a long recovery period), then you should talk to your doctor about any alternatives.

You need to be able to have a clear channel of communication open with your doctor, otherwise you may end up with an even more severe problem than a hip replacement surgery would have been in the first place. If you don’t feel comfortable with your doctor’s recommendation, you may consider finding another doctor. There is nothing wrong with getting a second opinion. After all, doctors aren’t always perfect.

If you don’t feel comfortable with your doctor’s recommendation, you may consider finding another doctor. There is nothing wrong with getting a second opinion. After all, doctors aren’t always perfect.

Once you get a second opinion, weigh all your options and come to the conclusion (with the guidance of your doctor or doctors) that you in fact do not need the surgery, then you can come back to your family and give them the facts about why it’s in your best interest to not go through with it.

Good luck.

– M

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