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Helpful tips and questions for meeting with your doctor and cancer team

​Your doctor and cancer care team are your best source of information and can answer your questions about your diagnosis, treatment and ongoing care.​​

It can be hard to understand or remember information when you are anxious or afraid, even if the doctor is thorough. You can get the most from your appointment with a little preparation:

  • Write down your questions before your appointment, and bring the list to your appointment.
  • Take notes to help you recall what your doctor says.
  • Bring a voice recorder and ask if you can record your discussion for later review.
  • Bring a family member or friend to your appointment

About your cancer diagnosis:

  • What is the type and name of the cancer I have?
  • At what stage is my cancer? What does that mean?
  • Is there anything about my cancer that makes my prognosis better or worse?
  • Is this type of cancer caused by genetic factors? Are other members of my family at risk?

Cancer Testing:

  • What types of tests, labs, x-rays or scans will I need? How often will I need them?
  • Can you explain the results of my tests?

Cancer treatment:

  • Which cancer treatment options are best for me?
  • What clinical cancer trials (research) are available for my diagnosis?
  • How often and how long will I receive this treatment?
  • How will I know if my treatment is working?
  • Where can I go for more information?

Side effects:

  • What are the side effects of my cancer treatments?
  • Is there anything I can do to make my side effects better?
  • Who should I call if I have questions or concerns outside of Clinic hours?

Daily activities:

  • How will cancer treatment affect my life and daily activities?
  • Will I be able to go back to work?
  • Will I be in the hospital for some or all of my treatment?
  • Are there activities I should avoid while undergoing treatment?
  • Where can I get more information to help me and my family during treatment and recovery?

Survivorship:

  • What can I expect my life to be like after cancer treatment?
  • What types of continued monitoring and treatment will I need?
  • When will you know I am cured?
  • What happens if my cancer comes back?​​​​​​​​
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