Preparing for the Office Visit

Office visits for surgical consultation

What are the items that are necessary to bring on the day of the office visit?

  • Your health insurance plan card
  • Your prescription insurance plan card
  • A list of all the medications you currently take
  • Personal identification (such as a driver’s license)
  • A check or credit card for deductibles, co-payments or deposits
  • List of doctors which have been involved with your care to date.
  • All applicable medical records:
    • Biopsy Reports
    • Imaging CD's and Reports (MRI, PET/CT, CT, Ultrasound)
    • Surgery Notes (Op Reports)
Parking guide and hints for UCLA Medical Center

Where is the best place to park the car?

  • There is a UCLA parking lot within the 200 Medical Plaza Building which can be accessed coming either from Westwood Blvd (east side) or from Gayley Ave (west side).
    • Flat fee for all day parking is $13.
    • Parking validation is not available.
  • UCLA Medical Plaza parking lots can get quite crowded after 9am making parking challenging and time consuming.
    • If planning on parking in the Medical Plaza Building, please allow time to find an available spot.
    • Alternatively, Westwood Village public parking lots can offer competitively priced options with greater availability.
Health Insurance Financial considerations throat cancer

What health plans (medical insurances) are accepted?

  • Dr. Mendelsohn makes no additional requirements and accepts all plans and policies which are accepted by UCLA Health
  • A full list of UCLA Health accepted plans can be found here
  • Patients with coverage policies which are not included in the accepted list, such as Kaiser Permanente Health Plans, up front payment will be required. Please contact us for additional information regarding direct payment options.
Late arrivals surgery appointments

What is the policy for late arrivals?

  • Patients are asked to arrive 15 minutes prior to their scheduled appointment time in order to complete the check in process and to fill out all necessary paperwork.
  • Patients are provided a 15 minute grace-period, allowing for common delays and traffic. Those arriving within 15 minutes after their scheduled appointment time can still be checked in without issue if advance notice is provided by phone: 310-206-6688.
  • Patients arriving more than 15 minutes after their scheduled appointment time will be asked to reschedule their appointment to another day.
    • Urgent consultations, such as new cancer diagnoses, who do not wish to reschedule may choose to wait until an availability opens, which does not cause a delay to other patients' confirmed appointment times. This wait can be several hours.
wait times UCLA Medical Plaza surgery consultation suite

How long can I expect to wait for my appointment?

    • New non-urgent consultations are currently scheduling approximately 3-4 weeks out.
    • New urgent can be usually scheduled within 7 days. Please contact us if you believe your consultation is considered urgent.
    • We strive to encounter every patient at the scheduled appointment time.
      • However, all patients are provided with unrestricted time in which to complete the goals of the consultation.
      • Therefore, wait times may reach 60 minutes, or even longer, during especially busy days.
      • Excessive wait times are extremely frustrating and not ideal.
      • Should wait times exceed the time allotted in your schedule, expedited rescheduling options can be made available.
Guide for laryngoscopy evaluation for throat cancer visits

What can be expected during a typical consultation?

  • Dr. Mendelsohn begins the consultation by first reviewing all available medical records and imaging (either available on the UCLA Electronic Medical Records System or those brought into the office)
  • Dr. Mendelsohn is typically accompanied by a second person in the examination room who functions as a Medical Scribe.
      • The Medical Scribe Clinical Information Managers (CIMs) assist Dr. Mendelsohn with various administrative aspects of patient care including documentation of history and physical findings in the electronic medical record, requesting laboratory and x-ray tests, electronic prescriptions, and facilitating inter-department referrals. Medical Scribes are held to the same standards of privacy and confidentiality as all healthcare professionals.
  • A history covering the reason for consultation will be performed in a quiet and confidential manner. You have the right to include (or exclude) any people accompanying you.
  • A targeted physical examination will then follow. Clothing is not removed for these examinations, with the exception of certain head/neck covering. If there is any reason that you would prefer not to remove head coverings, please communicate this to Dr. Mendelsohn who will be able to adjust the examination as needed to ensure your comfort.
  • Most commonly, Dr. Mendelsohn evaluates medical conditions of the throat. Therefore, examinations of the throat typically require direct visualization of the internal structures of the throat and the voice box. This is performed by in-office endoscopy:
      • Dr. Mendelsohn will use a nose spray which acts as an anesthetic to both nostrils. Additionally, a decongestant will be included in the nose spray to increase the open area within the nose.
      • A sterilized flexible laryngoscope is then gently inserted into the nose, moved into the throat and positioned near the affected area.
      • During the procedure, there is typically a strange sensation of the scope through the nose, however breathing will not be affected, and it is unusual for pain to be felt.
      • The vocal cords are examined by asking the patient to make slow long vowel sounds, such as 'eee' , so that the movements can be observed.
      • The flexible laryngoscopy is a relatively painless procedure, lasting less than 60 seconds.
      • After the procedure, there may be a sensation that the throat is swollen and may experience a bitter aftertaste, but these are due to the numbing medication and not due to any injury of the throat.
      • Once the examination is over patients can immediately return to normal activities, including driving home.