The Followup

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I recently had the sad experience of a patient cancelling their anticipated and planned for surgery. The reason for changing their mind on something that they have been thinking about for a long time is an encounter with someone who had similar surgery (different surgeon) and gave negative remarks about the scarring. The sad part of this story is that my potential patient did not even give himself a chance to explore with a professional his recently acquired anxieties and put the situation in perspective. He did not give himself the followup that he deserved to make a more thoughtful decision, even if the final decision would have been the same.