Author Topic: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor  (Read 6370 times)

v357139

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HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« on: May 06, 2013, 11:32:22 am »
For people who went to House Institute, how did you pick your doctor?  Did you just get whoever called back when you sent your records?  Did anyone specifically ask for certain doctors, and how?  I sent my records in and got a Dr Wilkinson, 40 yrs old.  How do I upgrade to one of the more experienced doctors there, and how would I know who to pick?
Dx 2.6 cm Nov 2012, 35% hearing loss.  Grew to 3.5 cm Oct 2013.  Pre-op total hearing loss, left side tongue numb.  Translab Nov 2013 House Clinic.  Post-op no permanent facial or other issues.  Tongue much improved.  Great result!!

jaylogs

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2013, 11:04:26 pm »
I picked the first doctor that contacted me, who was the infamous Dr. Brackmann.  I think, reading post of people who went to House, pretty much did the same, whomever contacted them first is who they get.  This is a pretty short list, mind you.  There are only a few doctors who are qualified to perform surgery at this level. So you'll one of maybe 2 or 3 that are there for that purpose.  It was interesting, when I had my pre/post surgery appointments there, I was in the waiting room with other patients, such as kids who had ear aches, and Dr. Brackmann was seeing them just as he would see me so these docs not only do An's, they do ENT stuff too!  Good luck with whomever you do get!
Jay
8.1mm x 7.8mm x 8.2mm AN, Left Ear, Middle Fossa surgery performed on 12/9/09 at House by Drs. Brackmann/Schwartz. Some hearing left, but got BAHA 2/25/11 (Ponto Pro) To see how I did through my Middle Fossa surgery, click here: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jaylogston

arizonajack

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2013, 09:46:34 am »
For people who went to House Institute, how did you pick your doctor?  Did you just get whoever called back when you sent your records?  Did anyone specifically ask for certain doctors, and how?  I sent my records in and got a Dr Wilkinson, 40 yrs old.  How do I upgrade to one of the more experienced doctors there, and how would I know who to pick?

I don't think age has anything to do with it.

He could have done 1000 AN surgeries in the last 10 years where somebody older might have done a lot less.

3/15/18 12mm x 6mm x5mm
9/21/16 12mm x 7mm x 5mm
3/23/15 12mm x 5.5mm x 4mm
3/13/14 12mm x 6mm x 4mm
8/1/13 14mm x 5mm x 4mm (Expected)
1/22/13 12mm x 3mm (Gamma Knife)
10/10/12 11mm x 4mm x 5mm
4/4/12 9mm x 4mm x 3mm (Diagnosis)

My story at: http://www.anausa.org/smf/index.php?topic=18287.0

Chances3

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2013, 11:10:39 am »
Clearly some maturity and experience is important, but the best way to pick your surgeon is to find others who have used him or her, and find out what their results were.  If the surgeon had good to great results for the majority of the patients, than you are in good hands - literally.

v357139

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2013, 11:29:17 am »
Who else out there has used House?  And who were your doctors?
Dx 2.6 cm Nov 2012, 35% hearing loss.  Grew to 3.5 cm Oct 2013.  Pre-op total hearing loss, left side tongue numb.  Translab Nov 2013 House Clinic.  Post-op no permanent facial or other issues.  Tongue much improved.  Great result!!

CHD63

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2013, 11:50:41 am »
I went to House, but I did not originate my contact through the free consultation route.  I chose my doctor and contacted him directly.  Dr. Rick Friedman was my doctor and he is wonderful!!!  You need to remember, however, that to my knowledge, all acoustic removals at House are done with two doctors involved ..... an otolaryngologist and a neurosurgeon.  Therefore, Dr. Marc Schwartz (neurosurgeon) did my actual tumor removal and Dr. Friedman (neuro-otolaryngologist) did the mastoidectomy and BAHA abutment implant.  Dr. Schwartz is also wonderful so they made a super team.  I have absolutely no regrets!

If you look at all of the doctors on the House Clinic list, you can read bios on all of them.  As Jay said, you really cannot do wrong with any of them because House Clinic has a rigorous vetting process for all the physicians they hire.

You need to follow your own instincts and not be afraid to contact a specific doctor you feel would be the best match for you.  You might have a wait a bit longer in choosing a specific doctor, but it would be worth it for your peace of mind.

Clarice
Right MVD for trigeminal neuralgia, 1994, Pittsburgh, PA
Left retrosigmoid 2.6 cm AN removal, February, 2008, Duke U
Tumor regrew to 1.3 cm in February, 2011
Translab AN removal, May, 2011 at HEI, Friedman & Schwartz
Oticon Ponto Pro abutment implant at same time; processor added August, 2011

davecz

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2013, 11:27:18 pm »
I sent my medical records down to HEI for a free consultation. Three days later, I received a call from Dr Friedman. I read so much about him on this site, so when he called I felt like I was talking to a celebrity. He was amazing from the beginning. For my surgery, I also had Dr Schwartz. When I did my pre op appt with Dr Schwartz, he mentioned that he received his training from, "the best neurosurgeon on the planet". that was pretty much all I needed. Great team. But then again, any of the doctors there are highly qualified so you will be in good hands. Good luck. another key player in your surgery will be the technician who monitors your facial nerve. My tech had 20 years experience, so I was pleased to hear that on my surgery day.

Davecz
Diagnosed 11/23/2011, R-AN, 3.0cm, Age: 51, very
athletic, symptoms; Sudden hearing loss R Ear, balance
 issues, fatigue, tinnitus. Surgery HEI, 04/27/2012, Dr.
Friedman & Swartz. Post op, translab, 100% tumor removal,
Facial nerve intact, no balance issues, released 3 days post op,
Doing grea

v357139

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2013, 08:19:23 pm »
I went to House, but I did not originate my contact through the free consultation route.  I chose my doctor and contacted him directly.  Dr. Rick Friedman was my doctor and he is wonderful!!!  You need to remember, however, that to my knowledge, all acoustic removals at House are done with two doctors involved ..... an otolaryngologist and a neurosurgeon.  Therefore, Dr. Marc Schwartz (neurosurgeon) did my actual tumor removal and Dr. Friedman (neuro-otolaryngologist) did the mastoidectomy and BAHA abutment implant.  Dr. Schwartz is also wonderful so they made a super team.  I have absolutely no regrets!

If you look at all of the doctors on the House Clinic list, you can read bios on all of them.  As Jay said, you really cannot do wrong with any of them because House Clinic has a rigorous vetting process for all the physicians they hire.

You need to follow your own instincts and not be afraid to contact a specific doctor you feel would be the best match for you.  You might have a wait a bit longer in choosing a specific doctor, but it would be worth it for your peace of mind.

Clarice

I was contacted by Wilkinson, who works with Schwartz.  Wilkinson has done 300, which I guess is not bad.  Does Friedman still also work with Schwartz?
Dx 2.6 cm Nov 2012, 35% hearing loss.  Grew to 3.5 cm Oct 2013.  Pre-op total hearing loss, left side tongue numb.  Translab Nov 2013 House Clinic.  Post-op no permanent facial or other issues.  Tongue much improved.  Great result!!

CHD63

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2013, 06:09:25 am »
To my knowledge and according to House's website, they have two neurosurgeons, Dr. Schwartz and Dr. Lekovic, so one or the other of them does tumor removal.  They have 8 neurotologists on staff.  The ones you hear the most about with tumor removal are Brackmann, Friedman, House, Luxford, Slattery, and Wilkinson.  Again, to my knowledge either of the two neurosurgeons can be paired with any of the neurotologists on staff for each surgery scheduled.

Which two are paired together depends on a number of things, but the schedule of each physician is probably the biggest decision, followed by patient preference.  So, yes, Dr. Friedman and Dr. Schwartz still work together.

Since House is sponsoring the biennial ANA Symposium in Los Angeles in August, their operating schedules will probably be somewhat shortened during that week of the Symposium.

If you feel strongly you want the Friedman/Schwartz team, you need to contact House and/or Dr. Friedman and express your preference ..... remember, it could mean waiting longer for their schedules to mesh.

Best thoughts .....

Clarice
Right MVD for trigeminal neuralgia, 1994, Pittsburgh, PA
Left retrosigmoid 2.6 cm AN removal, February, 2008, Duke U
Tumor regrew to 1.3 cm in February, 2011
Translab AN removal, May, 2011 at HEI, Friedman & Schwartz
Oticon Ponto Pro abutment implant at same time; processor added August, 2011

v357139

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2013, 06:51:53 pm »
Thanks Clarice.  How did you know to pick Friedman and Schwartz?  Not sure how I would pick differently out of those neurotologists you listed.
Dx 2.6 cm Nov 2012, 35% hearing loss.  Grew to 3.5 cm Oct 2013.  Pre-op total hearing loss, left side tongue numb.  Translab Nov 2013 House Clinic.  Post-op no permanent facial or other issues.  Tongue much improved.  Great result!!

CHD63

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2013, 09:41:59 pm »
I met Dr. Friedman and heard him speak at the 2009 ANA Symposium in Chicago and was very impressed.  Little did I know then that I would need his help in early 2011 when my pesky tumor grew back.

Also, I had read such encouraging posts about both Dr. Friedman and Dr. Schwartz on this Forum, so it was sort of a no-brainer for me at that point.

I can only speak about the two of them from personal experience, but House's reputation for treatment of acoustic neuromas was well established before either one of them began working there.

As I said before, if the way things are going on choice of doctors and/or treatment does not feel right, keep searching until you know you have made the right decision.  Ultimately only you can make this decision because you will be living with the results.  So do not be swayed by anyone on this forum, any family members, nor any doctors you consult.  This is your body and therefore your decision.  That being said, after you have done the research (like you are doing), at some point you will just know you have made the right decision for you.

Many thoughts and prayers for wisdom and peace as you complete this process.

Clarice
Right MVD for trigeminal neuralgia, 1994, Pittsburgh, PA
Left retrosigmoid 2.6 cm AN removal, February, 2008, Duke U
Tumor regrew to 1.3 cm in February, 2011
Translab AN removal, May, 2011 at HEI, Friedman & Schwartz
Oticon Ponto Pro abutment implant at same time; processor added August, 2011

v357139

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2013, 06:13:27 pm »
Thanks very much.  Research continues!
Dx 2.6 cm Nov 2012, 35% hearing loss.  Grew to 3.5 cm Oct 2013.  Pre-op total hearing loss, left side tongue numb.  Translab Nov 2013 House Clinic.  Post-op no permanent facial or other issues.  Tongue much improved.  Great result!!

michellef08

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2013, 09:36:44 pm »
I had my surgery 5 weeks ago at House with Dr. Schwartz and Friedman. I chose them based on reading peoples posts on this forum and to me it seemed like they had a lot of good outcomes. I also spoke to one patient in my area personally who had that surgical team and spoke very highly of them. When I sent my MRI to House, I wrote a letter specifically requesting Dr. Schwartz and Friedman.

I will say that going to House and having my surgeons was the best choice I could have made for myself. They removed my tumor completely (1.4 cm), no facial nerve problems whatsoever, and preserved my hearing completely. I feel so lucky for my outcome, but also know it was due a great deal to the wonderful surgeons. Good luck!
Diagnosed Dec 2012: AN right side 1.4 cm with mild hearing loss and tinnitus. Surgery: Middle Fossa at House with Schwartz/Friedman on April 10, 2013. Entire tumor removed, no facial issues, no balance issues, and they preserved my hearing!!

mindyandy

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2013, 09:18:48 am »
I requested Dr. Friedman/Schwartz because of people on this board. I'm glad I did. Don't base the dr's expertise on age. If he works at House then he must be really good. They do not just hire any doctor. They have the best of the best. If you are not comfortable with him after talking to him then ask for Dr. Friedman. Talk to Dr. Friedman and weigh your options. Dr. Brackman is fantastic as well. He took my stitches out. I really liked him too. Lots of experience.
14mm dx 9/07. CK done Seattle  1 year MRI showed some shrinkage. 4 year MRI 2mm growth nothing conclusive. Trigminal nerve involvment Retrosigmoid Friedmand/Schwartz HEI March 7,2012

v357139

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Re: HOUSE INSTITUTE - Picking a doctor
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2013, 01:20:21 pm »
Yes I contacted  Dr Friedman after Clarice suggested it (thanks Clarice!!).  So I can use him if I decide to go out there.
Dx 2.6 cm Nov 2012, 35% hearing loss.  Grew to 3.5 cm Oct 2013.  Pre-op total hearing loss, left side tongue numb.  Translab Nov 2013 House Clinic.  Post-op no permanent facial or other issues.  Tongue much improved.  Great result!!

 


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