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Questions to ask your Doctor about Cancer

Knowing about cancer is one of the first steps in understanding what can be done to sustain a healthy lifestyle. Many of your questions can be answered by your doctor. Below is a sample list of questions that can aid you in learning about your cancer.

  1. What is cancer?
  2. What type of cancer do I have?
  3. Is the cancer slow or fast growing
  4. Which parts of my body are affected?
  5. What is the stage or extent of my cancer?
  6. What is my prognosis?
  7. What treatment do you recommend? Why?
  8. What is the goal of treatment; cure or control of my symptoms?
  9. What are the possible risks or side effects of treatment?
  10. What are the pros and cons of my treatment?
  11. Are there other treatments for me to consider?
  12. How often will I need to come in for treatment or tests?
  13. How long will my treatments last?
  14. Will my life change?
  15. Will I need to make changes in my work, family life, and leisure time?
  16. What are the names of the drugs I will take? What are they for?
  17. How will you know that my treatment is working?
  18. If other specialists take part in my care, who will coordinate my entire treatment program?
  19. What symptoms or problems should I report right away?
  20. If I do not feel sick, does that mean the treatment is not working?
  21. What are the chances that my cancer may recur (come back), with the treatment programs we have discussed?
  22. What can I do to be ready for treatment?
  23. Are there any special foods I should or should not eat?
  24. Can I drink alcoholic beverages?
  25. What is the best time to call you if I have a question?
  26. What kinds of tests do I need to take?
  27. Why are you doing this test?
  28. What will the test involve?
  29. Will the test be painful?
  30. What will the results of the tests tell us?
  31. How accurate is the test?
  32. What are the risks of the test to me?
  33. Will the results of the test make any difference to the treatment I get?
  34. What are the results of the tests I have had already?
  35. Will I be charged for the tests or will my insurance cover it?
  36. Are clinical trials for new treatments available?


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