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Preparing for Your Visit to Bone & Joint Center

Thank you for choosing the Maimonides Bone & Joint Center for your orthopedic health care needs. We know you have numerous options, and we want thank you for entrusting your care to us. We continually strive to provide the highest level most compassionate care available.

For many people, coming to the doctor's office can be frightening; however, a little preparation and having proper expectations can make the experience more pleasant. You and your doctor are partners when it comes to your health, and therefore, it is important that you are prepared for your office visit.

The Day Before Your Visit

The day before your visit, someone from the office will contact you to confirm your appointment time. If you need to cancel or reschedule, we will do our best to accommodate you.

Please make sure to acquire all of your previous test results, including any MRI, CT and X-ray films or CDs, and reports.

Your Visit to Our Offices

Paperwork: As in most other doctors' offices, on your first visit you will be given several forms to fill out, mostly concerning your current complaints, your past medical and surgical history, and your medications. It is important to fill these out accurately, so that appropriate and safe treatments can be rendered. Please remember to bring your insurance card and photo ID.

Your History: The first thing the doctor will do when you meet him or her is take a detailed history of your condition. Be prepared to answer questions concerning the location of your pain, how long it's been present, any aggravating or alleviating factors, and any treatments that you may have received. If you have had any studies such as X-rays or MRIs, have them (CD or film and report) available for the doctor to review. You know your condition better than anyone, so this is the time to tell your doctor everything he or she needs to know to make an accurate diagnosis.

Physical Examination: After taking your history, the doctor will perform a physical examination in order to help determine your diagnosis. He may examine parts of your body which you do not think are involved, but may have an impact on your diagnosis. For instance, if you have numbness in your hands, the doctor will examine your neck to see if the condition is coming from a pinched nerve. It is helpful to come dressed appropriately to avoid having to undress completely. For instance, if you're coming complaining of elbow pain, wear a tank top underneath your shirt to allow access to your entire arm.

X-rays: After the history and physical examination, your doctor may need additional studies in order to make a diagnosis and offer appropriate treatment. Our office has an advanced x-ray and fluoroscopy suite, where many of these tests can be performed. Sometimes, certain studies need to be taken at an outside facility. If that's the case, our office will help you make arrangements.

Ask questions: After formulating an opinion and offering a treatment plan, your doctor will ask if you have any questions.  It helps if you come prepared with questions beforehand and have them written down. The doctor's office can be intimidating, and often people forget the questions they had in mind.

Bring a friend or family member: It is always helpful to have someone with you at the doctor's office. They can help you remember questions you may want to ask and fill in important information that you may have forgotten.

Take notes: There will be a lot of information exchanged during your visit, including your diagnosis, treatment plan, potential outcomes, possible complications, and more. It can be very difficult to remember all of this, and taking notes can be helpful.

Repeat what you've heard: One of the best ways to let your doctor know that you understand his medical advice is to repeat what you've heard in your own words. This is an excellent way of avoiding any miscommunication or misinformation during your visit.

Second opinions: If you would like to receive a second opinion after hearing yours doctor's advice, say so. Do not be embarrassed. The doctor can be very helpful in guiding you in the right direction.

Patient forms: Many patients have forms they need for work, school, disability, insurances, and so on. We will do the best we can to fill out your forms in a timely fashion. If we cannot do this during your visit, leave the forms with us and we will mail them to you as soon as possible.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and prepare for your visit with the doctor. We strive to ensure that every visit is a pleasant and educational experience for you, and we welcome all your comments and concerns.