Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Cancer Health Center

Font Size

Deciding on Your Cancer Treatment: Questions to Ask Your Doctor

When people are first  diagnosed with cancer, they have many  questions. However, when actually sitting in the doctor’s office, it’s very easy to forget the questions you have about cancer diagnosis and its treatment.

So make the most of your appointment: Go in prepared. To make it a little easier, here’s a list of questions you can ask your doctor about your condition and cancer treatments. 

Recommended Related to Cancer

Ewing Sarcoma: Recurrent Tumors

Standard Treatment Options Recurrence of Ewing sarcoma is most common within 2 years of initial diagnosis (approximately 80%).[1,2] However, late relapses occurring more than 5 years from initial diagnosis are more common in Ewing sarcoma (13%; 95% confidence interval, 9.4–16.5) than in other pediatric solid tumors.[3] The overall prognosis for patients with recurrent Ewing sarcoma is poor; 5-year survival following recurrence is approximately 10% to 15%.[2,4,5]; [1][Level of evidence: 3iiA]...

Read the Ewing Sarcoma: Recurrent Tumors article > >

  1. What kind of cancer do I have? What stage is it?
  2. How common is my cancer?
  3. What is my prognosis?
  4. What are my cancer treatment options?
  5. Are these cancer treatments proven or experimental?
  6. Are these cancer treatments covered by insurance?
  7. What should I expect from my cancer treatment? How long will it take? How will I feel?
  8. What side effects or complications could I face from my cancer treatment?
  9. In addition to treatment for cancer, will I also need to take other medicines? If so, what and for how long?
  10. Should I make any changes to my diet or lifestyle before starting cancer treatment?

You’ll also want to ask your cancer doctor about his or her qualifications. This is really an audition: Is this doctor the right person to treat you? Here are some questions to ask before you partner with a doctor in your cancer treatment.
 

  1. How much experience do you have in treating people with my type of cancer?
  2. How many people with my cancer have you treated in the past year?
  3. Are you board certified? If so, in what specialty or subspecialty?
  4. Do you have other relevant qualifications?
  5. Do you work closely with other specialists and health care providers who could be part of my cancer treatment team?
  6. What hospitals do you work with?
  7. Are clinical trials available at this medical center? If not, are they available in this area?
  8. Can you recommend another doctor for a second opinion?

You may feel awkward about quizzing your doctor about his or her experience. But doctors expect these questions and even welcome them. Doctors want their patients to feel comfortable and confident in their care, not intimidated.

WebMD Medical Reference

Today on WebMD

Building a Support System
Blog
cancer fighting foods
SLIDESHOW
 
precancerous lesions slideshow
SLIDESHOW
quit smoking tips
SLIDESHOW
 
Jennifer Goodman Linn self-portrait
Blog
what is your cancer risk
HEALTH CHECK
 
colorectal cancer treatment advances
Video
breast cancer overview slideshow
SLIDESHOW
 
prostate cancer overview
SLIDESHOW
lung cancer overview slideshow
SLIDESHOW
 
ovarian cancer overview slideshow
SLIDESHOW
Actor Michael Douglas
Article