Quiz Your Dr.

Vital questions to ask your Doctor

Getting Tested for Cancer – questions to ask

Your Proposed Treatment Plan – questions to ask

Each Treatment Type – questions to ask

 

Getting Tested for Cancer:
An early diagnosis can save your life.

If you think you may have cancer, please see a doctor immediately.
Your doctor may want you to undergo some diagnostic tests.
Here is a list of questions you might want to ask
Please feel free to print them out and take them with you.

GETTING TESTED FOR CANCER – QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR DR.

1. What diagnostic tests or procedures are you recommending?
2. What extra information do you get from each of these tests?
3. Will the tests show whether I have a tumor and whether it is benign or malignant?
4. Will they show what stage my cancer is at?
5. What does each of these tests involve?
6. How reliable are they?
7. What are the risks in undergoing these tests?
8. Do any of the tests have after effects?
9. What are the consequences if I do not have the test?
10. How should I prepare for them?
11. Are the tests painful?
12. Where and when will I have these tests?
13. Can I have all the tests as an outpatient and can I bring someone with me?
14. How many hours can we expect to be in the hospital?
15. Can I choose whether to have a sedative or general anaesthetic for these tests?
16. How will I get the results (over the phone, at the next appointment, etc.)?
17. How long will it take to get the results of these tests?
18. Where can I get more information about these tests?

If your doctor recommends a biopsy:
1. What type of biopsy do you recommend? Please explain it.
2. Who will perform the biopsy and where will it be done?
3. Will I experience pain during or after the procedure?
4. Will the biopsy leave a scar and, if so, where will it be?
5. After the biopsy, if there is a malignancy, how much time can I take to make up my mind on what type of treatment to have?
6. If I undergo general anaesthesia, can you guarantee that you won’t go ahead with surgery other than a biopsy, if that’s my preference?
7. How long will it take to get the results of the biopsy?
8. Where can I get more information about this type of biopsy?

Getting Your Test Results

Be informed. Ask questions.
Being informed and asking questions gives you some control over your cancer and may help you cope.
Studies show that people with cancer who are fully informed about their disease and treatment options usually tend to fare better and have fewer side effects than those who simply follow doctors’ orders.
Getting answers to your questions
Your doctor should make time to answer your questions and explain the treatment options.
If possible, bring a spouse, friend, or relative with you. They can take notes from your conversation with the doctor.

1. Did any of the tests or examinations indicate I have cancer?
2. If so, which one(s) and what did they show?
3. How reliable is this information?
4. What type of cancer do I have?
5. Where exactly is it located?
6. What is the stage of my cancer?
7. How is staging used to find the best cancer treatment?
8. Do you know how quickly it is likely to grow?
9. What is my prognosis (chance of recovery)?
10. How many people are diagnosed with this type of cancer each year?
11. What are the risk factors for this disease?
12. What are some common symptoms or side effects of this type of cancer?
13. How can I avoid these and/or manage them with my daily activities?
14. Is there anything that can be done to make my symptoms or side effects better?
15. Are there activities that may make them worse?
16. If new symptoms or side effects arise or existing ones worsen, what should I do?
17. Has the cancer spread (metastasised) to my lymph nodes or anywhere else?
18. What are lymph nodes and what do they do?
19. Which lymph nodes might be affected by the cancer?
20. What are the implications of this?
21. What further tests can be done to find out if the cancer has spread?
22. Do I need to have these tests?
23. When and where will I have these tests?
24. When will I get the results?
25. Is this type of cancer caused by genetic factors?
26. Are other members of my family at risk?
27. How much information about my diagnosis should I share, and at what time, with my friends and loved ones?
28. Where can I get more information about this type of cancer?
29. How can I get in touch with others who have had the same cancer?
30. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
31. What can we do to help each other?
32. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my spouse or partner?
33. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
34. How do family and friends usually react?
35. What support is available for my family members?
36. Where can I get more detailed information?
Add any additional questions you may have.

Second Opinion
Consider seeking a second opinion about your diagnosis or treatment plan, which may help you feel more confident about your choices.
Most doctors fully understand the value of a second opinion and are not offended when patients seek one.
They may even be able to suggest another doctor.

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Questions to ask about
YOUR PROPOSED TREATMENT PLAN

The five most important questions:

  1. How effective is this treatment – will it prolong my life?
  2. Will you show me a few studies that will verify this treatment will prolong my life?
    when directly compared to no treatment at all?
  3. What are the possible serious side effects?
  4. Will this treatment cause secondary cancers?
  5. What is the chance that the cancer will come back after treatment?

All questions
1. Which treatment, or combination of treatments, do you recommend – and why?
2. For my type of cancer, can personalized medicine be useful? **(see below)
3. Are there any tests (such as biomarker tests) that may help us know which treatments are more or less likely to work?
4. What is the recommended treatment for my stage of cancer?
5. Why do you think that this is the best treatment for me?
6. What is the goal of the treatment you are recommending?
7. Please explain how the treatment will help.
8. How effective is this treatment?
9. What results would you expect to see if I have this treatment?
10. Will the results of the treatment be worth the side effects I may get?
11. Besides treating cancer, what can be done to treat my symptoms?
12. How much experience do you (or the team) have treating this type of cancer?
13. Do I have a type of cancer which would be better treated at a specialized center?
14. Will you show me a few studies that will verify the treatment you are recommending will increase my lifespan, when directly compared to no treatment at all?
15. Will you show me a few studies that will verify the treatment you are recommending will enhance my quality of life?
Please don’t show me studies showing that the treatment will shrink the tumor. Please be specific and be sure the studies directly relate to longevity and quality of life compared to no treatment at all?
16. Will you get permission from a few of the patients you have treated with this method so that I can speak to them?
(Don’t accept refusal from the physician due to a patient privacy issue. Any physician can ask a patient if they would be willing to speak with another patient. It is done by legitimate physicians all the time).
17. Should I change my diet or take any vitamins, minerals or other supplements?
(This simple question will tell you immediately if this physician is keeping up with hundreds of study findings from all over the world that have shown dietary changes and supplements have a direct effect on many types of cancer).
18. Who will be part of my treatment team, and what does each member do?
19. When should I start treatment?
20. How can I keep myself as healthy as possible during treatment?
21. What is the expected timeline for my treatment plan?
22. If my cancer is to be removed by surgery, should I have additional treatment?
23. What additional treatment do you recommend?
24. How will I benefit from this additional treatment – please be specific?
25. What if I choose not to have treatment?
26. What lifestyle changes (diet, exercise, rest) do you recommend I make to stay as healthy as possible before, during, and after treatment?
27. Do I need to decide on my treatment right away, or can I take time to think about my options and discuss them with my family?
28. What is the chance that the cancer will come back after treatment?
29. If the cancer does come back, can it again be treated successfully?
30. What are clinical trials?
31. Are there Clinical Trials I might benefit from participating in?
32. How can I find out about clinical trials in my area?
33. Will any treatment I have affect my fertility (ability to become pregnant or father children)?
34. This is a big decision, how do I get a second opinion?
35. Is there a support group I can join or a support programme you can tell me about?
36. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
37. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting standard treatment? Prove it to me.
38. Any additional questions you may have.

** The term “personalized medicine” is often described as providing “the right patient with the right drug at the right dose at the right time.” More broadly, “personalized medicine” may be thought of as the tailoring of medical treatment to the individual characteristics, needs, and preferences of a patient during all stages of care, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up. (Source: US FDA)

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

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Questions to ask about each treatment type
(surgery, chemotherapy etc) proposed for you.

 

This may consist of one type of treatment or a combination of treatments.
Some treatments are highly toxic and dangerous, so it is important that you ask your medical team the right questions to satisfy yourself that the proposed treatment(s) will actually help you to recover from cancer.

Questions about each treatment follows.

Surgery

Surgery

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.

1. Why are you recommending surgery?
2. Why do you feel this treatment is the best option for me?
3. What is the success rate for this procedure?
4. What is the goal of this procedure?
5. What are the benefits and risks of this surgery?
6. What is the risk of death or serious disability?
7. Do you feel the benefits outweigh the risks? Why?
8. What are the possible consequences of postponing the surgery?
9. What will happen if I don’t have the surgery?
10. Will surgery increase the risk of metastasis (cancer spreading to other areas)?
11. Will surgery be my only treatment?
12. What is the name of the procedure I will have?
13. Are there any less extensive, less deforming, less painful operations than the one you are suggesting? If yes, what are they?
14. What are the risks and benefits of the other possible treatments?
15. Where can I find out more about these alternatives?

Undergoing Surgery
16. How many of these or similar operations have you personally performed?
17. Exactly what will you do — in simple terms?
18. How long will the procedure take?
19. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment? If yes, how many days will I have to spend in the hospital?
20.Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
21. Will I be given a local or a general anaesthetic?
22. What will this treatment do to my body?
23. What parts of my body will be targeted?
24. Will I have stitches or staples?
25. Can I go home afterwards?

Following Surgery
26. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
27. How long will it last?
28. How can it be managed?
29. Will it make me prone to infections?
30. Will I have to have drains, catheters, intravenous lines, transfusions?
31. Will I be nauseous?
32. Will I be exhausted?
33. Will surgery affect my usual activities? If so, for how long?
34. How long will it take for scars to heal?
35. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after the surgery ?
36. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?
37. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
38. Will I need help with daily activities following surgery?
39. What are the possible side-effects?
40. When would they start?
41. How are they usually managed?
42. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
43. Who do I call?
44. When will have the stitches or staples removed?
45. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might be a sign of a problem?
46. Can the cancer spread after surgery?
47. Is there anything I can do to speed up the healing process?

Long Term
48. Are there any possible long-term effects?
49. What are they and how are they usually managed?
50. What symptoms might be a sign of a problem?
56. Will I need physiotherapy?
51. How long will it take to heal overall?
52. Will the surgery affect my sex life?
53. Will I be able to work?
54. When will I know if surgery was successful?
55. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
56. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
57. Where can I get more detailed information about this procedure?
58. (For women): Will this surgery affect my chances of getting pregnant and
having a normal baby?
59. (For men): Will surgery affect my chances of fathering a child?
60. When will I know if the surgery is proving successful?
61. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
62. Where can I get more information about this procedure?

Family concerns
63. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
64. What can we do to help each other?
65. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
66. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
67. How do family and friends usually react?
68. What support is available for my family members?
69. Where can I get more detailed information about family support?

SURGERY RESULTS
70. How big is the tumour?
71. Were you able to remove it entirely?
72. What stage is the cancer?
73. What does that mean?
74. How many lymph nodes were removed (if any)?
75. Did any of them show cancer?
76. Has the cancer spread anywhere else?
77. What is the grade of the cancer?
78. How fast is it growing?
79. What are the chances that the cancer will come back after treatment?

RECONSTRUCTIVE SURGERY
80. What is Reconstructive Surgery?
81. Do I need it?
82. Why do I need it?
83. What types of reconstructive surgery are available to me?
84. What is the name of the operation that is recommended for me?
85. Can you explain the procedure?
86. What are the benefits and risks of reconstruction?
87. Where can I meet others who have had reconstruction?
88. When is the best time to do reconstructive surgery for someone in my situation?
89. What steps will I go through before, during and after my reconstruction?
90. How long will I be in the hospital?
91. How long will it take for me to recover?
92. What are the short-term side effects?
93. Will I regain my normal function after the reconstructive surgery?
94. What is prosthesis?
95. Will I need one?
96. How do I get a prosthesis?
97. Where can I get more detailed information on Reconstructive Surgery?
Any other questions you may have.

Questions To Ask The Anaesthesiologist
1. What medication will I be given before going into the operating room?
2. Who will give me the medication and the anaesthesia?
3. How will they be given to me?
4. Will my allergies be a problem?
5. What type of anaesthetic will you give me?
6. What are the side effects?
7. What are the risks?
8. How long will the operation take?
9. How long will it be before I wake up?
10. Will I go to a recovery room after the operation?
11. Is a general anaesthetic necessary for this operation?
12. Will any of the over-the-counter medicines I’m taking be a problem?

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

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Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.

1. What is Chemotherapy?
2. Why are you recommending I have Chemotherapy?
3. Why do you feel Chemotherapy is the best option for me?
4. How will it help me?
5. What is the goal of the treatment?
6. What is the success rate for this treatment?
7. Will Chemotherapy be my only treatment?
8. What are the benefits and risks of Chemotherapy?

Chemotherapy Drugs
9. What are the names of the drugs?
10. Why are you recommending those particular drugs?
11. Is there evidence that they are more effective than other chemotherapy drugs?
12. How many drugs will I be taking at one time?
13. Will the drugs make me prone to infections?
14. What is a Chemo-sensitivity Test? (See explanatory notes below)
15. Would I benefit from this test?
26. If so, where will this test be carried out and when will the results be known?
17. Is Chrono-therapy available to me? (See explanatory notes below)
18. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
19. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting any Chemotherapy?
20. What are the likely consequences if I don’t have this treatment?
21. Where can I find more information about alternative therapies?

Undergoing Chemotherapy
22. What kind of chemotherapy will I undergo?
23. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment?
24. If yes, how long will I have to spend in the hospital?
25. How will the chemotherapy be given?
26. Who will give it to me?
27. How often will it be given?
28. Over what period of time?
29. How long will each treatment take?
30. What parts of my body will be targeted?
31. What will this treatment do to my body?
32. Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
33. Can I go home immediately afterwards?
34. Will chemotherapy affect my usual activities? If so, for how long?
35. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
36. Will I need help with daily activities during treatment?
37. When I am taking Chemotherapy, can I eat all kinds of foods?
38. Can I drink alcohol?
39. Can I take other medications at the same time?
40. Are there any special precautions I need to take while on chemotherapy?
41. Are there special instructions to follow while I’m having chemotherapy or after the treatment is finished?

Following Chemotherapy
42. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
43. How long will it last?
44. How can it be managed?
45. What are the possible side effects?
46. When would they start?
47. How are they usually managed?
48. Are there any side effects I should report right away?
49. Who do I call?
50. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might be a sign of a problem?
51. Is there anything I can do to lessen the side effects?
52. Can the cancer spread, even though I am on Chemotherapy?
53. Will I gain or lose weight?
54. Will I lose my hair? If so, how soon?
55. Will I be nauseous?
56. Will I be exhausted?
57. Will I get mouth sores?
58. What type of activities should I avoid while on this treatment? For how long?
59. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after treatment?
60. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?
61. What is cachexia?
62. How dangerous is it?
63. Is it avoidable?
64. If not, what can be done to reduce it’s effects?

Long Term
65. Are there any possible long-term effects?
66. What are they and how are they usually managed?
67. Are there any special exercises I can do to help my recovery?
68. Will I need physiotherapy?
69. Are there any special instructions to follow while I am receiving chemotherapy or after the treatment is finished?
70. How long will it take for the treated area to heal?
71. Will I need help at home?
72. Will I be able to work?
73. What do I need to know about taking care of my skin during treatment?
74. Is it ok to use perfume, deodorants or lotions?
75. Will Chemotherapy affect my sex life?
76. When will I know if the Chemotherapy is proving successful?
77. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
78. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
79. Where can I find more detailed information about Chemotherapy?

Complementary therapy.
80. Would complementary therapies help me?
81. Is there one in particular you would suggest?
82. Is this therapy available locally?
83. What are the known risks and benefits in using this therapy?
84. When would it be safe for me to use this therapy with my conventional treatment?
85. What is a safe amount of this therapy?
86. Will you help me track both the benefits and side effects of the therapy?
87. Do you have any suggestions about other complementary therapies that could be helpful for my type of cancer?
88. Where can I find more information about complementary therapy?

Family concerns
89. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
90. What can we do to help each other?
91. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my spouse or partner?
92. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
93. How do family and friends usually react?
94. What support is available for my family members?
95. Where can I get more detailed information?

FERTILITY concerns
96. Will the treatment affect my ability to have children?
97. Is there another treatment that might preserve my ability to have children without reducing my chance of long-term survival?
98. What’s the risk of congenital abnormality (birth defects) in any children conceived after my treatment ends?
99. Will you refer me to a fertility specialist to discuss my options before starting my treatment?
100. Will preserving my fertility delay my treatment?

For Women:
101. Is there anything you can do to protect my ovaries?
102. Will you do a pregnancy test before starting treatment to make certain I am not pregnant now?
103. If I am pregnant, how will this affect my treatment?
104. Is it possible to harvest eggs, fertilize them, and store them as embryos before starting treatment?
105. Can I still conceive a child when I am getting cancer treatment?
106. Should my partner and I use birth control measures during treatment?
107. What kind would you recommend or advise against …and why?
108. What are the risks to me and to my child should I become pregnant during treatment ?
109. Will the treatment induce menopause?
110. Will the menopause last only a short while or will it be permanent?
111. Would you recommend hormone replacement therapy in light of my cancer diagnosis?
112. Should my partner and I use birth control measures after treatment is over?
113. For how long? …and why?
114. If I am able to conceive a child after my treatment is over, will there be any risk to my health?
115. Once my treatment is over, how long would I have to wait before trying to get pregnant?

For Men:
116. Is there anything you can do to protect my testicles?
117. Is it possible to bank my sperm before starting treatment?
118. While I am in treatment, will I still produce sperm?
129. Is it necessary for me to use condoms during sexual activity?
120. Will I still be able to father children after treatment is finished?
Any other questions you may have.

Chemosensitivity Tests
Personalized cytometric profiling reveals which anti-cancer drugs are effective at killing each patient’s cancer cells and which agents are not effective. The most promising drug regimen can be selected for each cancer patient, increasing the odds for treatment success. At the same time, ineffective drugs are avoided. This spares the patient needless exposure to harmful side effects from drugs that can’t possibly help them. Further, valuable treatment time is not wasted and the patient does not incur unnecessary costs from expensive but ineffective treatments.

A list of Laboratories that supply these tests please see All Tests

Chronotherapy
The adminstration of Chemotherapy doses synchronized to the body’s circadian rhythm; Chronotherapy may raise allowable doses of chemotherapeutics, and lower tumor burden and chemotherapy-related side effects.

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

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Radiation-treatment

Radiation treatment

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.

Radiation treatment

1. Why are you recommending I have Radiation Treatment?
2. Is radiation to be used as a cure or symptom relief? (A lot less radiation is needed for symptom relief).
3. How will this treatment change the cancer environment: will it only kill some of the cancer cells and leave me vulnerable when the cancer stem cells go on to create more cancer?
4. Are there active cancer cells in the area, or is the radiotherapy a precautionary measure?
5. How will it help me?
6. Will a planning CT (CAT scan) be required to determine the area to be treated?
7. Will I require more than one of these scans which inherently subject me to even more radiation?
8. What would you consider to be a successful outcome at the end of the treatment?
For example
a) no tumour remaining?
b) a reduction in tumour size? or,
c) another outcome?
9. What is the success rate for this treatment?
10. How often have you personally treated my type of tumour, and what is your success rate?
11. Define success rate and how does it compare to the national average?
11. Will Radiation therapy be my only treatment?
12. What are the benefits and risks of Radiation therapy?
13. What other organs and tissues will receive radiaton as well as the target area?
14. Will the beam be modulated in any way to minimise damage?
15. What are the chances of it causing long-term damage to surrounding organs and/or bones?
16. What is likely to happen if I don’t have these treatments?
17. What is the name of the treatment I will have?
18. Is this the optimum time for this treatment, or would it be better to hold it in reserve?
19. How will radiation affect my risk of distant relapse, which has a much higher rate of recurrence (30%) than the 10-15 percent of patients with stage I or II who will develop a local recurrence? In light of the risk of the radiation creating more cancer, how will this radiation treatment benefit me?
20. Which supplements are recommend to:
• improve the success of the radiotherapy?
• reduce side effects?
• speed up recovery?

Other Treatments
21. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
22. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting any Radiation therapy?
23. Where can I find more information about alternative therapies?

Undergoing Radiation
24.What kind of Radiation will I undergo?
25. Who will be responsible for my radiation treatment?
26. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment?
27. If yes, how many days will I have to spend in the hospital?
28. How will the radiation be given?
29. How many sessions will there be?
30. Who will give it to me?
31. How often will it be given?
32. Over what period of time?
33. How much radiation will I be taking at one time?
34. How long will each treatment take to administer?
35. What parts of my body will be targeted?
36. What will this treatment do to my body?
37. Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
38. Can I go home immediately afterwards?
39. Will Radiation affect my usual activities? If so, for how long?
40. What lifestyle changes will I need to make to improve the outcome of the radiation treatment and protect my body during treatments?
41. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
42. Will I need help with daily activities during treatment?
43. Are there special instructions to follow while I’m having Radiation or after the treatment is finished?
44. When I am taking Radiation, can I eat all kinds of foods and drink alcohol??
45. How will you protect my heart and other organs from the radiation?
46. What type of activities should I avoid while on this treatment?
47. Will the treatment make me prone to infections?
48. How will you support my immune system during treatment?
49. What special attention do I need to pay to the area of my body that is being treated?
50. What happens if there is no response?
51. How common is that and what is the fallback plan?

Following Radiation
52. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
53. How long will it last?
54. How can it be managed?
55. Do I need to put something special on my skin if I get “burned” by the treatments?
56. What are the possible side-effects?
57. When would they start?
58. How are they usually managed?
59. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
60. Who do I call?
61. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might indicate a problem?
62. Is there anything I can do to lessen the side effects?
63. Can the cancer spread, even though I am on Radiation?
64. Will I gain or lose weight?
65. Will I lose my hair?
66. If so, how soon?
67. Will I be nauseous?
68. Will I be exhausted?
69. Will I get mouth sores?
70. What type of activities should I avoid?
71. For how long?
72. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after treatment?
73. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?

Long Term
74. Are there any possible long-term effects?
75. What are they and how are they usually managed?
76. Are there any special exercises I can do to help my recovery?
77. Will I need physiotherapy?
78. How long will it take for the treated area to heal?
79. Will I need help at home?
80. Will I be able to work?
81. What do I need to know about taking care of my skin during treatment?
82. Is it ok to use perfume, deodorants or lotions?
83. Will this treatment affect my sex life?
84. When will I know if the treatment was successful?
85. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
86. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
87. Where can I get more detailed information about this kind of treatment?

Complementary therapy.
88. Would complementary therapies help me?
89. Is there one in particular you would suggest?
90. Is this therapy available locally?
91. What are the known risks and benefits in using this therapy?
92. When would it be safe for me to use this therapy with my conventional treatment?
93. What is a safe amount of this therapy?
94. Will you help me track both the benefits and side effects of the therapy?
95. Do you have any suggestions about other complementary therapies that could be helpful for my type of cancer?
96. Would I benefit from Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
97. Where can I find more information about complementary therapy?

Family concerns
98. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
99. What can we do to help each other?
100. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
101. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
102. How do family and friends usually react?
103. What support is available for my family members?
104. Where can I get more detailed information?

FERTILITY concerns
105. Will the treatment affect my ability to have children?
106. Is there another treatment that might preserve my ability to have children without reducing my chance of long-term survival?
107. What’s the risk of congenital abnormality (birth defects) in any children conceived after my treatment ends?
108. Will you refer me to a fertility specialist to discuss my options before starting my treatment?
109. Will preserving my fertility delay my treatment?

For Women:
110. Is there anything you can do to protect my ovaries from exposure to radiation (ie, surgical relocation)?
111. Will you do a pregnancy test before starting treatment to make certain I am not pregnant now?
112. If I am pregnant, how will this affect my treatment?
113. Is it possible to harvest eggs, fertilize them, and store them as embryos before starting treatment?
114. Can I still conceive a child when I am getting cancer treatment?
115. Should my partner and I use birth control measures during treatment?
116. What kind would you recommend or advise against …and why?
117 What are the risks to me and to my child should I become pregnant during treatment ?
118. Will the treatment induce menopause?
119. Will the menopause last only a short while or will it be permanent?
120. Should my partner and I use birth control measures after treatment is over?
121. For how long? …and why?
122. If I am able to conceive a child after my treatment is over, will there be any risk to my health?
123. Once my treatment is over, how long would I have to wait before trying to get pregnant?

For Men:
124. Is there anything you can do to protect my testicles from exposure to radiation?
125. Is it possible to bank my sperm before starting treatment?
126. While I am in treatment, will I still produce sperm?
127. Is it necessary for me to use condoms during sexual activity?
128. Will I still be able to father children after treatment is finished?
Other questions you may have.

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

Want to print or share with someone?

Download PDF


Biological-treatment

Biological therapy

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.

What is Biological Therapy?
2. Why are you recommending this treatment?
3. Why do you feel this treatment is the best option for me?
4. How will it help me?
5. What is the goal of this treatment?
6. What is the success rate for this treatment?
7. Will Biological Therapy be my only treatment?
8. What are the benefits and risks of Biological Therapy?
9. Will surgery form part of my treatment?
10. If so, will it be before or after other stages of my treatment?

Other Treatments
11. Is Chronotherapy available to me? (See explanatory notes below)
12. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
13. Could we integrate that Alternative Therapy with Hormone Therapy?
14. What would be the benefits of trying any particular alternative therapy on it’s own before starting any Hormone Therapy?
15. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting any Hormone Therapy?

Undergoing Biological Therapy
16. What type of Biological Therapy will I be given?
17. What will this involve?
18. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment?
19. If yes, how long will I have to spend in the hospital?
20. How long will the treatment go on for?
21. How often will it be given?
22. Over what period of time?
23. Who will give it to me?
24. What parts of my body will be targeted?
25. How many treatments will I have?
26. How long will each treatment take?
27. What will this treatment do to my body?
28. Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
29. Can I go home immediately afterwards?
30. Will Biological Therapy affect my usual activities?
31. If so, for how long?
32. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
33. Will I need help with daily activities during treatment?
34. When I am taking Biological Therapy, can I eat all kinds of foods?
35. Can I drink alcohol?
36. Should I do anything in particular before treatments, such as not eat?
37. For how long?
38. Are there any special instructions to follow while I am receiving treatment or after the treatment is finished?

Drugs
39. What are the names of the drugs I’ll be taking (if applicable)?
40. Why are you recommending those particular drugs?
41. Is there evidence that they are more effective than other chemotherapy drugs?
42. How many drugs will I be taking at one time?
43. Will the treatment make me prone to infections?

Following Treatment
44. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
45. How long will it last?
46. How can it be managed?
47. What are the possible side-effects?
48. When would they start?
49. How are they usually managed?
50. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
51. Who do I call?
52. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might indicate a problem?
53. Is there anything I can do to lessen the side effects?
54. Can the cancer spread, even though I am undergoing Biological Therapy?
55. Will I gain or lose weight?
56. Will I lose my hair?
57. If so, how soon?
58. Will I be nauseous?
59. Will I be exhausted?
60. Will I get mouth sores?
61. What type of activities should I avoid while on this treatment?
62. For how long?
63. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after treatment?
64. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?

Long Term
65. Are there any possible long-term effects?
66. What are they and how are they usually managed?
67. Are there any special exercises I can do to help my recovery?
68. Will I need physiotherapy?
69. Are there special instructions to follow while I’m having Biological Therapy or after the treatment is finished?
70. Will I need help at home?
71. Will I be able to work?
72. What do I need to know about taking care of my skin during treatment?
73. Is it ok to use perfume, deodorants or lotions?
74. Will this treatment affect my sex life?
75. When will I know if the treatment was successful?
76. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
77. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
78. Where can I get more detailed information about this kind of treatment?

Complementary therapy.
79. Would complementary therapies help me?
80. Is there one in particular you would suggest?
81. Is this therapy available locally?
82. What are the known risks and benefits in using this therapy?
83. When would it be safe for me to use this therapy with my conventional treatment?
84. What is a safe amount of this therapy?
85. Will you help me track both the benefits and side effects of the therapy?
86. Do you have any suggestions about other complementary therapies that could be helpful for my type of cancer?
87. Where can I find more information about complementary therapy?

Family concerns
88. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
89. What can we do to help each other?
90. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
91. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
92. How do family and friends usually react?
93. What support is available for my family members?
94. Where can I get more detailed information?

FERTILITY concerns
95. Will the treatment affect my ability to have children?
96. Is there another treatment that might preserve my ability to have children without reducing my chance of long-term survival?
97. What’s the risk of congenital abnormality (birth defects) in any children conceived after my treatment ends?
98. Will you refer me to a fertility specialist to discuss my options before starting my treatment?
99. Will preserving my fertility delay my treatment?

For Women:
100. Is there any danger to my ovaries during treatment?
101. Will you do a pregnancy test before starting treatment to make certain I am not pregnant now?
102. If I am pregnant, how will this affect my treatment?
103. Is it possible to harvest eggs, fertilize them, and store them as embryos before starting treatment?
104. Can I still conceive a child when I am getting cancer treatment?
105. Should my partner and I use birth control measures during treatment?
106. What kind would you recommend or advise against …and why?
107. What are the risks to me and to my child should I become pregnant during treatment ?
108. Will the treatment induce menopause?
109. Will the menopause last only a short while or will it be permanent?
110. Should my partner and I use birth control measures after treatment is over?
111. For how long? …and why?
112. If I am able to conceive a child after my treatment is over, will there be any risk to my health?
113. Once my treatment is over, how long would I have to wait before trying to get pregnant?

For Men:
114. Is it possible to bank my sperm before starting treatment?
115. While I am in treatment, will I still produce sperm?
116. Is it necessary for me to use condoms during sexual activity?
117. Will I still be able to father children after treatment is finished?

Any other questions you may have.

Chronotherapy
The administration of drug doses synchronized to the body’s circadian rhythm; Chronotherapy may raise allowable doses of drugs, and lower tumor burden and drug-related side effects.

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Beinvolved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

Want to print or share with someone?

Download PDF


Hormone-therapy

Hormone Therapy

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.

1. What is Hormone Therapy?
2. Why are you recommending this treatment?
3. Why do you feel this treatment is the best option for me?
4. How will it help me?
5. What is the goal of this treatment?
6. What is the success rate for this treatment?
7. Will Hormone Therapy be my only treatment?
8. What are the benefits and risks of Hormone Therapy?
9. Will surgery form part of my treatment?
10. If so, will it be before or after other stages of my treatment?

Other Treatments
11. Is Chronotherapy available to me? (See explanatory notes below)
12. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
13. Could we integrate that Alternative Therapy with Hormone Therapy?
14. What would be the benefits of trying any particular alternative therapy on it’s own before starting any Hormone Therapy?
15. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting any Hormone Therapy?
16. Where can I find more information about alternative therapies?

Undergoing Hormone Therapy
17. What type of Hormone Therapy will I be given?
18. What will this involve?
19. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment?
20. If yes, how many days will I have to spend in the hospital?
21. How long will the treatment go on for?
22. How often will it be given?
23. Over what period of time?
24. Who will give it to me?
25. What parts of my body will be targeted?
26. What will this treatment do to my body?
27. Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
28. Can I go home immediately afterwards?
29. Will hormone therapy affect my usual activities?
30. If so, for how long?
31. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
32. Will I need help with daily activities during treatment?
33. When I am taking Hormone Therapy, can I eat all kinds of foods?
34. Can I drink alcohol?
35. Should I do anything in particular before treatments, such as not eat?
36. For how long?
37. Are there special instructions to follow while I’m having this therapy or after the treatment is finished?

Drugs
38. What are the names of the drugs I’ll be taking (if applicable)?
39. Why are you recommending those particular drugs?
40. Is there evidence that they are more effective than other drugs?
41. How many drugs will I be taking at one time?
42. Will the treatment make me prone to infections?

Following Treatment
43. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
44. How long will it last?
45. How can it be managed?
46. What are the possible side-effects?
47. When would they start?
48. How are they usually managed?
49. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
50. Who do I call?
51. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might indicate a problem?
52. Is there anything I can do to lessen the side effects?
53. Can the cancer spread, even though I am on hormone therapy?
54. Will I gain or lose weight?
55. Will I lose my hair?
56. If so, how soon?
57. Will I be nauseous?
58. Will I be exhausted?
59. Will I get mouth sores?
60. What type of activities should I avoid while on this treatment?
61. For how long?
62. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after treatment?
63. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?

Long Term
64. Are there any possible long-term effects?
65. What are they and how are they usually managed?
66. Are there any special exercises I can do to help my recovery?
67. Will I need physiotherapy?
68. Are there any special instructions to follow while I am receiving Hormone
69. Therapy or after the treatment is finished?
70. Will I need help at home?
71. Will I be able to work?
72. What do I need to know about taking care of my skin during treatment?
73. Is it ok to use perfume, deodorants or lotions?
74. Will this affect my sex life?
75. When will I know if the treatment was successful?
76. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
77. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
78. Where can I get more detailed information about this kind of treatment?

Complementary therapy.
79. Would complementary therapies help me?
80. Is there one in particular you would suggest?
81. Is this therapy available locally?
82. What are the known risks and benefits in using this therapy?
83. When would it be safe for me to use this therapy with my conventional treatment?
84. What is a safe amount of this therapy?
85. Will you help me track both the benefits and side effects of the therapy?
86. Do you have any suggestions about other complementary therapies that could be helpful for my type of cancer?
87. Where can I find more information about complementary therapy?

Family concerns
88. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
89. What can we do to help each other?
90. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
91. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
92. How do family and friends usually react?
93. What support is available for my family members?
94. Where can I get more detailed information?

FERTILITY concerns
95. Will the treatment affect my ability to have children?
96. Is there another treatment that might preserve my ability to have children without reducing my chance of long-term survival?
97. What’s the risk of congenital abnormality (birth defects) in any children conceived after my treatment ends?
98. Will you refer me to a fertility specialist to discuss my options before starting my treatment?
99. Will preserving my fertility delay my treatment?

For Women:
100. Will you do a pregnancy test before starting treatment to make certain I am not pregnant now?
101. If I am pregnant, how will this affect my treatment?
102. Is it possible to harvest eggs, fertilize them, and store them as embryos before starting treatment?
103. Can I still conceive a child when I am getting cancer treatment?
104. Should my partner and I use birth control measures during treatment?
105. What kind would you recommend or advise against …and why?
106. What are the risks to me and to my child should I become pregnant during treatment ?
107. Will the treatment induce menopause?
108. Will the menopause last only a short while or will it be permanent?
109. Should my partner and I use birth control measures after treatment is over?
110. For how long? …and why?
111. If I am able to conceive a child after my treatment is over, will there be any risk to my health?
112. Once my treatment is over, how long would I have to wait before trying to get pregnant?

For Men:
113. Is it possible to bank my sperm before starting treatment?
114. While I am in treatment, will I still produce sperm?
115. Is it necessary for me to use condoms during sexual activity?
116. Will I still be able to father children after treatment?

Any other questions you may have.

Chronotherapy
The adminstration of treatment synchronized to the body’s circadian rhythm; Chronotherapy may raise allowable doses of drugs, and lower tumor burden and drug-related side effects.

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Beinvolved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

Want to print or share with someone?

Download PDF


Cryotherapy

Cryotherapy

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.
1. Why are you recommending Cryotherapy?
2. Why do you feel this treatment is the best option for me?
3. What is the success rate for this procedure?
4. What is the goal of this procedure?
5. What are the benefits and risks of this procedure?
6. What is the risk of death or serious disability?
7. Do you feel the benefits outweigh the risks? Why?
8. What are the possible consequences of postponing the procedure?
9. What will happen if I don’t have the procedure?
10. Will cryosurgery increase the risk of metastesis (cancer spreading to other areas)?
11. Will Cryotherapy be my only treatment?
12. What is the full name of the procedure I will have?
13. Are there any less extensive, less deforming, less painful operations than the one you are suggesting? If yes, what are they?
14. What are the risks and benefits of the other possible treatments?
15. Where can I find out more about these alternatives?

Undergoing Cryotherapy
16. How many of these or similar procedures have you personally performed?
17. Exactly what will you do — in simple terms?
18. How long will the procedure take?
19. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment? If yes, how many days will I have to spend in the hospital?
20.Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
21. Will I be given a local or a general anaesthetic?
22. What will this treatment do to my body?
23. What parts of my body will be targeted?
24. Will I have stitches or staples?
25. Can I go home afterwards?

Following Cryotherapy
26. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
27. How long will it last?
28. How can it be managed?
29. Will it make me prone to infections?
30. Will I have to have drains, catheters, intravenous lines, transfusions?
31. Will I be nauseous?
32. Will I be exhausted?
33. Will cryosurgery affect my usual activities? If so, for how long?
34. How long will it take for scars to heal?
35. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after the procedure?
36. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?
37. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
38. Will I need help with daily activities following Cryotherapy?
39. What are the possible side-effects?
40. When would they start?
41. How are they usually managed?
42. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
43. Who do I call?
44. When will I have the stitches or staples removed?
45. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might indicate a problem?
46. Can the cancer spread after Cryotherapy?
47. Is there anything I can do to speed up the healing process?

Long Term
48. Are there any possible long-term effects?
49. What are they and how are they usually managed?
50. What symptoms might be a sign of a problem?
56. Will I need physiotherapy?
51. How long will it take to heal overall?
52. Will the cryosurgery affect my sex life?
53. Will I be able to work?
54. When will I know if the Cryotherapy was successful?
55. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
56. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
57. Where can I get more detailed information about this procedure?
58. (For women): Will this procedure affect my chances of getting pregnant and
having a normal baby?
59. (For men): Will cryosurgery affect my chances of fathering a child?
60. When will I know if the Cryotherapy is proving successful?
61. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
62. Where can I get more information about this procedure?

Family concerns
63. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
64. What can we do to help each other?
65. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
66. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
67. How do family and friends usually react?
68. What support is available for my family members?
69. Where can I get more detailed information about family support?

Any other questions you may have.

Questions To Ask Your Anaesthesiologist
1. What medication will I be given before the procedure?
2. Who will give me the medication and the anaesthesia?
3. How will they be given to me?
4. Will my allergies be a problem?
5. What type of anaesthetic will you give me?
6. What are the side effects?
7. What are the risks?
8. How long will the procedure take?
9. How long will it be before I wake up?
10. Will I go to a recovery room after the procedure?
11. Is a general anaesthetic necessary for this procedure?
12. Will any of the over-the-counter medicines I’m taking be a problem?

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Beinvolved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

Want to print or share with someone?

Download PDF


Clinical-Trials

Clinical Trials

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.
1. What is the purpose of this clinical trial?
2. Why is this specific approach being studied?
3. Why does the research team think the treatment, drug, or medical device will work?
4. Is this a treatment option for me?
5. Why are you recommending this clinical trial for me?
6. What other treatment options are available to me, including other clinical trials?
7. Who or what organization is sponsoring the clinical trial?
8. Who has reviewed and approved this clinical trial?
9. Does this clinical trial include the use of a placebo (also called a “sugar pill”)?

Questions about your participation in a specific clinical trial
10. Where is the clinical trial taking place (sometimes called the study site)?
11. How often will I have to go to the study site?
12. How long will the clinical trial last?
13. What are my responsibilities during the clinical trial?
14. What kinds of treatments, tests, scans, and other procedures will I have during the clinical trial?
15. How often?
16. Will they hurt?
17. If so, for how long?
18. What is a biospecimen (tissue sample), and what types are needed for this trial?
19. What will be done with the tissue samples?
20. Do I need to donate these in order to participate in the study?
21. What tests will be done on the tissue sample?
22. What is a biomarker?
23. Will these be tested for in the clinical trial?
24. How will the tests and procedures needed in this study compare with tests and procedures I would need to have outside of this study?
25. Will I be able to take my regular medications during the clinical trial?
26. What medications, procedures, or treatments must I avoid while in the clinical trial?
27. Will I have to be in the hospital during the clinical trial?
28. Who will know that I am participating in a clinical trial?
29. Can I talk to other people in this clinical trial?
30. Will I be able to find out the results of the clinical trial?
31. When?
32. Will the study researchers work with my doctor while I am in the clinical trial?
33. Who will be coordinating my overall health care?
34. Who do I contact if I experience side effects or other problems during the clinical trial?
35. Who will provide my medical care after the clinical trial ends?

Questions about risks and benefits of a specific clinical trial
36. What are the possible advantages of participating in this clinical trial?
37. What are the possible risks of participating in this clinical trial?
38. How do the possible risks and benefits of this clinical trial compare with the standard treatments for me?
39. How do they compare with other clinical trials open to me?
40. What are the possible short-term side effects of both the approved treatments and those being tested in this clinical trial?
41. How can they be managed?
42. What are the long-term side effects and how can they be managed?
43. How will this treatment affect my daily life?
44. Will I be able to work, exercise, and perform my usual activities?
45. What happens if my health gets worse during the clinical trial?

Questions related to the cost of a clinical trial
46. What costs can I expect if I choose to participate in this clinical trial?
47. What are the charges likely to be?
48. How do these costs compare to the costs of my other treatment options?
49. Is my insurance likely to cover my expenses from this clinical trial?
50. What is “informed consent”?

Other Treatments
51. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
52. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting any Clinical Trials?
53. Where can I find more information about alternative therapies?

Any other questions you may have.

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

Want to print or share with someone?

Download PDF


Targeted-therapy

Targeted Therapy

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.

  1. What is Targeted Therapy?
    2. Why are you recommending this treatment?
    3. Why do you feel this treatment is the best option for me?
    4. How will it help me?
    5. What is the goal of this treatment?
    6. What is the success rate for this treatment?
    7. Will Targeted Therapy be my only treatment?
    8. What are the benefits and risks of Targeted Therapy?
    9. Will surgery form part of my treatment?
    10. If so, will it be before or after other stages of my treatment?

Other Treatments
11. Is Chronotherapy available to me? (See explanatory notes below)
12. Is there an alternative therapy that has proven effective in treating my type of cancer?
13. Could we integrate that Alternative Therapy with Hormone Therapy?
14. What would be the benefits of trying any particular alternative therapy on it’s own before starting any Hormone Therapy?
15. What would be the “down-side” of trying an alternative therapy before starting any Hormone Therapy?
16. Where can I find more information about alternative therapies?

Undergoing Targeted Therapy
17. What type of Targeted Therapy will I be given?
18. What will this involve?
19. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment?
20. If yes, how many days will I have to spend in the hospital?
21. How long will the treatment go on for?
22. How often will it be given?
23. Over what period of time?
24. Who will give it to me?
25. What parts of my body will be targeted?
26. What will this treatment do to my body?
27. Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
28. Can I go home immediately afterwards?
29. Will Targeted therapy affect my usual activities?
30. If so, for how long?
31. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
32. Will I need help with daily activities during treatment?
33. When I am taking Targeted Therapy, can I eat all kinds of foods?
34. Can I drink alcohol?
35. Should I do anything in particular before treatments, such as not eat?
36. For how long?
37. Are there special instructions to follow while I’m having Targeted therapy or after the treatment is finished?

Drugs
38. What are the names of the drugs I’ll be taking ?
39. Why are you recommending those particular drugs?
40. Is there evidence that they are more effective than other drugs?
41. How many drugs will I be taking at one time?
42. Will the treatment make me prone to infections?

Following Treatment
43. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
44. How long will it last?
45. How can it be managed?
46. What are the possible side-effects?
47. When would they start?
48. How are they usually managed?
49. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
50. Who do I call?
51. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might indicate a problem?
52. Is there anything I can do to lessen the side effects?
53. Can the cancer spread, even though I am on Targeted therapy?
54. Will I gain or lose weight?
55. Will I lose my hair?
56. If so, how soon?
57. Will I be nauseous?
58. Will I be exhausted?
59. Will I get mouth sores?
60. What type of activities should I avoid while on this treatment?
61. For how long?
62. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after treatment?
63. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?

Long Term
64. Are there any possible long-term effects?
65. What are they and how are they usually managed?
66. Are there any special exercises I can do to help my recovery?
67. Will I need physiotherapy?
68. Are there any special instructions to follow while I am receiving Targeted
69. Therapy or after the treatment is finished?
70. Will I need help at home?
71. Will I be able to work?
72. What do I need to know about taking care of my skin during treatment?
73. Is it ok to use perfume, deodorants or lotions?
74. Will this affect my sex life?
75. When will I know if the treatment was successful?
76. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
77. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
78. Where can I get more detailed information about this kind of treatment?

Complementary therapy.
79. Would complementary therapies help me?
80. Is there one in particular you would suggest?
81. Is this therapy available locally?
82. What are the known risks and benefits in using this therapy?
83. When would it be safe for me to use this therapy with my conventional treatment?
84. What is a safe amount of this therapy?
85. Will you help me track both the benefits and side effects of the therapy?
86. Do you have any suggestions about other complementary therapies that could be helpful for my type of cancer?
87. Where can I find more information about complementary therapy?

Family concerns
88. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
89. What can we do to help each other?
90. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
91. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
92. How do family and friends usually react?
93. What support is available for my family members?
94. Where can I get more detailed information?

FERTILITY concerns
95. Will the treatment affect my ability to have children?
96. Is there another treatment that might preserve my ability to have children without reducing my chance of long-term survival?
97. What’s the risk of congenital abnormality (birth defects) in any children conceived after my treatment ends?
98. Will you refer me to a fertility specialist to discuss my options before starting my treatment?
99. Will preserving my fertility delay my treatment?

For Women:
100. Will you do a pregnancy test before starting treatment to make certain I am not pregnant now?
101. If I am pregnant, how will this affect my treatment?
102. Is it possible to harvest eggs, fertilize them, and store them as embryos before starting treatment?
103. Can I still conceive a child when I am getting cancer treatment?
104. Should my partner and I use birth control measures during treatment?
105. What kind would you recommend or advise against …and why?
106. What are the risks to me and to my child should I become pregnant during treatment ?
107. Will the treatment induce menopause?
108. Will the menopause last only a short while or will it be permanent?
109. Should my partner and I use birth control measures after treatment is over?
110. For how long? …and why?
111. If I am able to conceive a child after my treatment is over, will there be any risk to my health?
112. Once my treatment is over, how long would I have to wait before trying to get pregnant?

For Men:
113. Is it possible to bank my sperm before starting treatment?
114. While I am in treatment, will I still produce sperm?
115. Is it necessary for me to use condoms during sexual activity?
116. Will I still be able to father children after treatment?

Any other questions you may have.

Chronotherapy
The adminstration of treatment synchronized to the body’s circadian rhythm; Chronotherapy may raise allowable doses of drugs, and lower tumor burden and drug-related side effects.

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

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Radiofrequency-Ablation

Radio Frequency Ablation

The key question to ask is, “What proof is there that the treatment being offered will cure, extend actual survival, or increase the quality of life?” Ask to see scientific papers and reports on the treatment. If necessary, seek professional help in interpreting this information.
1. Why are you recommending Radio Frequency Ablation?
2. Why do you feel this treatment is the best option for me?
3. What is the success rate for this procedure?
4. What is the goal of this procedure?
5. What are the benefits and risks of Radio Frequency Ablation?
6. What is the risk of death or serious disability?
7. Do you feel the benefits outweigh the risks? Why?
8. What are the possible consequences of postponing the procedure?
9. What will happen if I don’t have the procedure?
10. Will Ablation increase the risk of metastisis (cancer spreading to other areas)?
11. Will Radio Frequency Ablation be my only treatment?
12. What is the full name of the procedure I will have?
13. Are there any less extensive, less deforming, less painful procedures than the one you are suggesting? If yes, what are they?
14. What are the risks and benefits of the other possible treatments?
15. Where can I find out more about these alternatives?

Undergoing Radio Frequency Ablation
16. How many of these or similar procedures have you personally performed?
17. Exactly what will you do — in simple terms?
18. How long will the procedure take?
19. Will I need to go to hospital to have this treatment? If yes, how many days will I have to spend in the hospital?
20.Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
21. Will I be given a local or a general anaesthetic?
22. What will this treatment do to my body?
23. What parts of my body will be targeted?
24. Will I have stitches or staples?
25. Can I go home afterwards?

Following Radio Frequency Ablation
26. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
27. How long will it last?
28. How can it be managed?
29. Will it make me prone to infections?
30. Will I have to have drains, catheters, intravenous lines, transfusions?
31. Will I be nauseous?
32. Will I be exhausted?
33. Will Radio Frequency Ablation affect my usual activities? If so, for how long?
34. How long will it take for scars to heal?
35. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control) am I likely to have after the procedure?
36. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?
37. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
38. Will I need help with daily activities following the procedure?
39. What are the possible side-effects?
40. When would they start?
41. How are they usually managed?
42. Are there any side-effects that I should report right away?
43. Who do I call?
44. When will I have the stitches or staples removed?
45. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might be a sign of a problem?
46. Can the cancer spread after Radio Frequency Ablation?
47. Is there anything I can do to speed up the healing process?

Long Term
48. Are there any possible long-term effects?
49. What are they and how are they usually managed?
50. What symptoms might be a sign of a problem?
56. Will I need physiotherapy?
51. How long will it take to heal overall?
52. Will the Radio Frequency Ablation affect my sex life?
53. Will I be able to work?
54. When will I know if the procedure was successful?
55. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
56. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
57. Where can I get more detailed information about this procedure?
(For women):
58. Will this procedure affect my chances of getting pregnant and
having a normal baby?
(For men):
59. Will Radio Frequency Ablation affect my chances of fathering a child?
60. When will I know if the procedure is proving successful?
61. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
62. Where can I get more information about this procedure?

Family concerns
63. How does a partner or spouse usually react?
64. What can we do to help each other?
65. How can I talk about the changes in my body with my partner?
66. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
67. How do family and friends usually react?
68. What support is available for my family members?
69. Where can I get more detailed information about family support?

Any other questions you may have.

Questions To Ask Your Anaesthesiologist
1. What medication will I be given before the procedure?
2. Who will give me the medication and the anaesthesia?
3. How will they be given to me?
4. Will my allergies be a problem?
5. What type of anaesthetic will you give me?
6. What are the side effects?
7. What are the risks?
8. How long will the procedure take?
9. How long will it be before I wake up?
10. Will I go to a recovery room after the procedure?
11. Is a general anaesthetic necessary for this procedure?
12. Will any of the over-the-counter medicines I’m taking be a problem?

You are the most important member of your healthcare team. Your situation is unique, and your treatment should be developed just for you. You can participate in your care by doing the following:

Be involved in decisions that affect you.
Learn about your cancer and all available treatment options.
Go to all your doctor, clinic and hospital appointments.
Ask your team how to contact them between appointments if you have any questions that need answers quickly.
Talk to your team about your worries or concerns.

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Questions-to-consider-before-using-Alternative-Treatment

Questions to consider before using Alternative Treatments

Why this treatment?

1. Why am I considering the use of this treatment?
2. What do I hope the treatment will accomplish?
3. What are the advantages of using this treatment instead of standard treatment?
4. What are the disadvantages of using this treatment instead of standard treatment?
5. Will I be able to speak to other patients who have used this treatment successfully?
6. Will my family support my choice of treatment?
7. Have others with my cancer type used this treatment successfully?
8. Are there any Clinical Trials, Scientific Studies, or Reviews to show the efficacy of this treatment for my cancer type?
9. Does this treatment offer me a better chance of overall survival than standard treatment?
10. What are the likely consequences if I don’t have this treatment?
11. Is there a Cancer Coach or Alternative Practitioner I can consult for once-off or ongoing advice?
12. Will my doctor continue to care for me if she/he knows about my use of this treatment?
13. Will my doctor address any concerns my family may have in advance of treatment?

Undergoing treatment
14. Will I need to go to a hospital, clinic or retreat to have this treatment?
15. If yes, how long will I have to spend there?
16. How will the treatment be given?
17. Who will give it to me?
18. How often will it be given?
19. Over what period of time?
20. How long will each treatment take?
21. What parts of my body will be targeted?
22. What (if anything) will this treatment do to my body?
23. Will I feel pain or discomfort during the treatment?
24. Can I go home immediately afterwards?
25. Are there any side effects associated with this treatment?
26. If so, what are they?
27. How will they be treated?
28. Should I change my diet or take any vitamins, minerals or other supplements?
29. Will drugs be used in this treatment?
30. What are the names of the drugs?
31. Why are these drugs used?
32. How many drugs will I be taking at one time?
33. Will the drugs make me prone to infections?
34. Will treatment affect my usual activities? If so, for how long?
35. Will I need to take time off work or adjust my work schedule?
36. Will I need help with daily activities during treatment?
37. When I am having treatment, can I eat all kinds of foods?
42. Can I drink alcohol?
43. Can I take other medications at the same time?
44. Are there any special precautions I need to take while undergoing treatment?
45. Are there special instructions to follow while I’m undergoing treatment or after the treatment is finished?

Following treatment
46. Will I have pain or discomfort after treatment?
47. How long will it last?
48. How can it be managed?
49. What are the possible side effects?
50. When would they start?
51. How are they usually managed?
52. Are there any side effects I should report right away?
53. Who do I call?
54. What symptoms – swelling, fever, nausea and so on – might be a sign of a problem?
55. Is there anything I can do to lessen the side effects?
56. Can the cancer spread, despite undergoing this treatment?
57. Will I gain or lose weight?
58. What type of activities should I avoid while on this treatment? For how long?
59. What kinds of feelings (such as sadness, anger, vulnerability, loss of control)
am I likely to have after treatment?
60. Where can I find help coping with my feelings if I need it?

Long Term
61. Are there any possible long-term effects?
62. What are they and how are they usually managed?
63. Are there any special exercises I can do to help my recovery?
64. Will I need physiotherapy?
65. Are there any special instructions to follow while I am having treatment or after the treatment is finished?
66. How long will it take for the treated area to heal?
67. Will I need help at home?
68. Will I be able to work?
69. Is it ok to use perfume, deodorants or lotions?
70. Will treatment affect my sex life?
71. When will I know if the treatment is proving successful?
72. Are there tests I can use to check progress?
73. If so, what are they?
74. How can I access them?
75. What are the chances of the cancer returning?
76. What follow-up tests do I need, and how often will I need them?
77. Will I still have access to Tests, Scans, X-Rays etc if required?
78. Will I be able to change to a different treatment option if this doesn’t work?

Family concerns
79. How will my spouse or partner react?
80. How can I talk about the changes in my body with her/him?
81. What can we do to help each other?
82. How do I talk to my friends and family about cancer and my treatment?
83. How are they likely to react?
84. What support is available for my family members?

FERTILITY concerns
85. Will the treatment affect my ability to have children?
86. Is there another treatment that might preserve my ability to have children without reducing my chance of long-term survival?
87. What (if any) are the risks of congenital abnormality (birth defects) in any children conceived after my treatment ends?
88. Do I need to be referred to a fertility specialist to discuss my options before starting my treatment?
89. Will preserving my fertility delay my treatment?
For Women:
90. Does this treatment present any danger to my ovaries?
91. Should I do a pregnancy test before starting treatment to make certain I am not pregnant?
92. If I am pregnant, how will this affect my treatment?
93. Is it possible to harvest eggs, fertilize them, and store them as embryos before starting treatment?
94. Can I still conceive a child when I am getting cancer treatment?
95. Should my partner and I use birth control measures during treatment?
96. If so, what kind?
97. What are the risks to me and to my child should I become pregnant during treatment ?
98. Will the treatment induce menopause?
99. Will the menopause last only a short while or will it be permanent?
100. Do I need to use birth control measures after treatment is over?
101. Is so, for how long?
102. If I am able to conceive a child after my treatment is over, will there be any risk to my health?
103. Once my treatment is over, how long would I have to wait before trying to get pregnant?
For Men:
104. Is it possible to bank my sperm before starting treatment?
105. While I am in treatment, will I still produce sperm?
106. Is it necessary for me to use condoms during sexual activity?
107. Will I still be able to father children after treatment is finished?

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