Alex Simotas, MD

Hospital for Special Surgery
Board Certified Physiatrist
Specializing In Spine & Sports Medicine

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Initial Visit Expectations

You have been referred to Dr. Simotas to assess and find solutions for the physical difficulties and pain you may have been encountering. It is normal to be somewhat anxious about going to the doctor.

You probably have a number of questions. What is causing my problem? How will my condition affect my lifestyle? Will the pain go away? How long will it take to get better? What will the treatment entail? Will I need surgery? What can I do?

My staff and I understand that the musculoskeletal problem you have may be causing significant pain, weakness, or dysfunction. These are problems that can impact your “normal” lifestyle and performance, be it at work, home and social activities or athletic pursuits. We are committed to helping you to address these issues so that you can begin to resume the lifestyle you desire.

In order for us to properly evaluate and treat your condition we need to have a comprehensive understanding of your current issue as well as your existing and previous medical history.

My staff will direct you to obtain or have available previous radiographic studies (the actual exam) or pertinent medical histories of the problem at hand. Please advise my staff if your imaging studies were performed at Hospital for Special Surgery so we can access the images online. If we do not have all of your relevant medical records and images at the time of your visit, your appointment may need to be rescheduled. Please also have your updated insurance information and any required copay.

Prior to your first visit you will be asked by my staff to complete a number of forms in advance of your initial consultation. Some of these forms are routine patient – insurance information and standard patient release forms. The Consultation Form asks general questions to ascertain a detailed medical history and concentrates on asking questions about your current condition. These forms can be accessed on our website. It is important that you answer all of the questions as best as you can. E-mail the completed, signed forms back to our office or bring them with you to your scheduled appointment.

The information requested on these forms will contribute to the whole assessment and treatment of your condition, so your participation is appreciated. Completing all of this information before your visit will expedite the registration process. Please download the Appointment Checklist on our website under the Forms section to use as a reminder of what you need for your first appointment.

Upon arrival at our office, please check-in at the desk on the 4th floor, where the completion of all appropriate forms will be verified, and where you will be asked for personal and insurance information. Once the registration is complete, you will be escorted to the first available exam room. One of our nurses will take your vital signs and inform you what you may need to do in advance of seeing Dr. Simotas who will review your medical history, imaging studies, and perform a physical examination. Dr. Simotas will then give you an explanation of your condition and possible treatment options for your particular diagnosis. Expect your initial consultation to take approximately forty-five minutes to complete. Dr Simotas may ask some patients to undergo further x-ray studies the same day. This obviously may lengthen the time of your visit.

Your active participation in your rehabilitative process is a critical component to a successful treatment plan. Please review our website for useful information about your condition, and write down any questions that you or your family have prior to your initial visit.

As your doctor I understand that the whole process can be filled with emotion but I want to encourage you to share any information that may give us both insight into your condition and the course of your rehabilitation. We will do everything we can to make your visit as pleasant as possible, and limit your waiting time for the examination.

After your initial appointment you will be given some material to read which I hope will educate you on your symptoms, your condition, and once diagnosed, your possible course(s) of treatment. Please take the time to read the material and to further explore our website.

Again, I want to encourage you to be an active participant in your rehabilitative process and am confident that together we can help to return you to a healthy, active lifestyle.

Dr. Alex Simotas