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How to interpret news?


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Hello Everyone,

I write once again with questions about my sister and her treatments. We recently had a scare about a CT result. Now we're hearing conflicting stories about her oncologist's observation vs. his partner's earlier observations. Our family is so confused and frightened. One day we panic, the next day we feel releif and hope.

My sister and her husband are both very intelligent and well educated people. Somehow, when receiving information from the doctor, they sometimes can walk away with different interpretations (or confusing the facts relayed).

I'm leaving on Thursday to visit them out West. Can anyone give me some suggestions on how to better communicate with their doc (without trying to sound like I'm butting in)?

As always, I thank you all for sharing your wisdom. Sis

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One thing that helped us tremendously was the use of a tape recorder. Be sure to inform the dr. ahead of time............if there is a concern on his/her part, well I would be concerned about the dr. There should be no objection to doing this. My husband is hearing impaiared and we were faced with the same problem as your sister, we came away with different takes on what had been said. The tape recorder solved it for us. Hope this helps.


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My best advice is this. This is your sisters life here. Ask questions. It sounds like a sit down of all 5 people here. 2 Doctors, Sister and Husband, and yourself. If there are doubts about Diagnosis, Ask to see test results like scans. Treatment options, of course and anyhting else you want to know about. Sit Down with sis and husband before and let them know your thoughts about all this of course to avoid same questions for Doctors. If you and Sisters husband Do not advocate no one will. She is not Doctors only patient so you need to ask away.

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Hi Sis,

You have some wonderful advice here already. I will add that in addition to asking to SEE the test results, request copies and more importantly, if there is ANY doubt as to whether everyone understands what is being said, ask the Doctor to explain it in terms that are basic. And if it still is unclear, ask them to repeat it or write it down for you.

Keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers,


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Many prayers for your sis and I am so glad you are heading west!

You've gotten great advice. One of the things that I did with my mom was to get a small journal and write down every single question I/we had.

Ditto to what Chris said about not being shy asking the doc to speak in layman's terms.

Safe trip and please update as you can


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