Basic questions to ask?
Asking your doctor questions is an important part of managing your care. Your specific questions will be based on your unique situation and they may change over time. These are the most common questions:
• What type of cancer do I have? Where is it located? Has it spread?
• What is the stage of my cancer? What does this mean?
• What is my prognosis, or chance of recovery?
• Howmuch experience do you have treating this type of cancer? Should I get a referral to someone with more of a specialty?
• What are the treatment options for my symptoms? Which treatments, or combination of treatments, do you recommend? Why?
• What diagnostic tests or procedures will I need? How often?
• When will I get the results, and how will I receive them? Over the phone or at my next appointment?
• What is the expected timeline for my treatment? How soon will I begin it? Where?
• What are the short- and long-term side effects of this treatment?
• How will you treat side effects that I experience during treatment?
• How can I keep myself as healthy as possible during treatment?
• Will I be able to work during treatment?
• What lifestyle choices should I begin to make right now?
• What resources
and people should I reach out to right now, and in what order?
• Should I consider genetic testing or clinical trials?
• Is there anything else I should be asking?
In the early stages of your diagnosis it is beneficial to seek multiple opinions and
properly chose your medical team. See Getting a Second Opinion on next page.