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What details do we need to know/what questions to ask?


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Meeting with an oncologist next week for the first time... I'm compiling a list of questions to ask, but want to make sure I don't miss any important details for my step dad...  in no particular order: 


1. Pain management options 

2. Can we have care transferred closer to home (current cancer centre is 3 hours away)?

3. What type of lung cancer, stage, mets?

4. Available treatment options? What would doctor recommend? Side effects of treatment?

5. Can we get a copy of pathology report?

6. What is the goal of treatment? Palliative care?

7. What to expect next? 

8. Special precautions as a diabetic?

9. When to go the hospital or call doctor?

10. How will progression be monitored? 


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Those are great questions !   I am so glad that your step dad has you to help him. 

Most important to me is to take notes of what he does say and how he answers your questions.

I was so overwhelmed with all that I know how easy it is to miss something.  It is great to have

another set of ears.

Hope even if you stay with the same doctors that there is a chemo offfice or radiation unit for day

to day treatments so you don't have to be on the road soooooo much !

Keep us posted.


Donna G

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Thanks for the listing. Actually some of your answer you will get directly from doctor without asking. But the most important thing is as Donna mention that you should note the answer of doctor because after appointment there are chances that may be you will forgot something. God bless! Keep us updated.

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Great questions all.  Ensure you bring a list of all his current meds. If fact, if he has a smart phone, put his med list on the phone as a note or file.  Everyone will ask him for it and he can pull it up and show it.  Also, record his chemo side effects as notes on his smart phone and track start and end time on the calendar app of the phone.  Ask for copies of all test reports, blood work in particular during treatment. As a diabetic chemo patient, special attention to blood sugar will be required.  Moreover, if he receives a PET scan during treatment, the test technician will do a blood glucose test before infusing him with radioactive glucose.  He'll need to know his as is glucose baseline if it is elevated.  Chemo caused my body to synthesize less Magnesium than normal and this lower level caused painful muscle cramps.  I keep a record of all blood tests that my oncologist performs before every visit and treatment.  I keep key indicators as a note on my cell phone so I have a historical track readily available.


As Donna says, a second set of ears at all consultations is vital.  While I was in active treatment, I was so afraid I'd try and talk about most anything other than cancer.  My wife asked all relevant questions.  Fear causes unusual behavior.


Stay the course.



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