If you scan the internet you will have no trouble finding worrying accounts from people who have undergone weight loss surgery abroad. Some have received low-quality care, while others have suffered complications on their return home and have had to turn to local professionals. Scare stories aside, there are without question excellent surgeons practicing south of the border, it's simply a question of seeking them out.
For most people this begins with a Google search. This is a great place to start but it's important to vet the surgeons you are thinking of working with. Being patient and taking the trouble to connect with them (preferably by phone or Skype) will give you valuable input as to their professionalism. The surgeon should be available to speak with you and be prepared to answer your questions.
Make a list of questions if you need to, and listen to how the surgeon answers them. A conscientious professional will appreciate your diligence and provide clear answers. He or she will also understand if you are apprehensive and will offer reassurance. Overall, he/she should be patient, articulate and helpful.
You should not be nervous about speaking with a surgeon. They are only human and you are after all the customer, someone they depend on for their livelihood. Most of all, you should trust your instincts and go with the surgeon you feel most comfortable with. An additional step you can take is to connect with other patients on online forums.
Online forums can be tremendous for reading other people's accounts of surgical tourism. Most forum users are friendly and open to sharing their experiences. You may also be able to connect with former patients of the surgeon(s) you have short listed. These customers can be a great resource for first-hand feedback.
Forum users can also be a terrific source of emotional support, although if and when you do decide to go ahead, it's obviously best to have a supportive friend or family member. It's natural to feel nervous about having a major operation, especially in a foreign country. Having a friendly companion (in person or by phone) can prove an invaluable source of comfort.
One final point, when searching for practitioners on the internet you may find some making 'act now!' style special offers. There's nothing necessarily wrong with this, but you should be wary about making your decision based on price alone. You are purchasing a service that will change your life and should therefore make your choice based on the professionalism of the surgeon. Providing you make your choice carefully and with a clear head, you should have a satisfactory experience and a good outcome.
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