People makes mistake every day, and doctors are not immune to this fact. After all, we are all human and we’ll learn from our mistakes. Even if it’s not about who’s right or who’s wrong, you may find that sometimes their findings and approach to treatment or recommendations can vary dramatically. Some might have an alternative to a costly treatment, or some might have a more forward treatment.

Especially when it comes to major medical decision in our lives, or that life threatening diagnosis we’ve received just few days ago, it is very good for us to seek a second opinion for it, even though it might just confirm what we already know. It can offer insight to more options or approach of treatment plan that the first doctor may not have mentioned.

For me, there are 5 keys to consider if you’re contemplating on a 2nd opinion:

  1. If there are persistent symptoms even after undergone treatment. No one knows your body more than you do, so be your own best advocate.
  2. If you are diagnosed with a rare disease. Since there is little research behind it, asking for a 2nd opinion to confirm this wouldn’t hurt.
  3. If the recommended treatment is risky especially when it comes to a 50-50 chance of fail or success rate. Since it may have lifelong consequence, it certainly would be better to seek for a 2nd opinion from someone expert on that specific area.
  4. Diagnosed with cancer. I understand that this will definitely shatter or shake your life. So be as informed as possible about your prognosis and possible best option available to you.
  5. If you simply have a gut feeling that something felt off. Sometimes doctors don’t always get it absolutely right. Following a doctor’s order is good, but it’s not wrong to ask questions and gather more information on your diagnosis for better understanding on your health.

And did you know, researchers have found out that from a survey they did, one out of every five patients were incorrectly diagnosed? Yes! So the next time you’ve been contemplating for a second visit to the hospital seeking for a 2nd opinion, don’t be! You might just have new or more refined diagnosis than the previous one.