Best Doctors 2010: How To Get a Second Opinion

You’ve just been diagnosed with a condition. Yeah, it can be scary, and most times you want the comfort of knowing your doctor was right or the treatment is the best option. Getting a second opinion is not a rare thing, but it can be nerve-racking to ask for one. “When you think you know everything, you probably need to stop practicing medicine,” says Dr. Michael Grimes of Summa Health Systems. “It’s constantly changing.” So ask away, keeping these things in mind.

Be honest. Grimes recommends being upfront about the situation, and you’ll find most doctors will be humble about it. “I know my strengths and my weaknesses. A patient should be able to be direct with their doctors.”

Ask for referrals. “I have good relationships with specialists in the area,” Grimes says. “They will do a phone consult with me and say whether I should get the individual in to see them or other things I can try.”

Remember your rights. “You should be allowed to get a second opinion.” If your doctor meets your request with resistance, it might be time to consider finding a new doctor.

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