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Is there time for another opinion?


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Sorry for the noob question, but I have a biopsy scheduled for next Friday 9/11, and I’ll probably be getting results a few days later, and I’m wondering if I should request the results be sent to another institution to get their take on the results and treatment options.

The answer seems like an obvious ‘yes’, but is there time for this?  Inevitably, I’d need to wait a week for a consultation appointment and  I feel like the longer I wait the more chance the cancer has time to creep into another lymph node or something.

Thanks for any advice.


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I didn't realize till my appointment to set up chemo/immunotherapy for next week that I wanted/needed a second opinion. I was fortunate to have a nearby NIH CCC, which advertised same-day virtual appointments. I called them and managed to get an appointment for tomorrow. I'll be running around in the morning to get them my imaging discs. I'm hoping to get some further molecular testing before I start treatment, but I'll have to see what they think about starting any treatment before those results come back.

I suppose you could go ahead and set up the appointment now--even after you get biopsy results it will still be a week or two before you actually begin treatment, most likely. 


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Yes, there is time.  I know how crazy that sounds.  Dr. David Carbone, a well known lung cancer oncologist once said, lung cancer is rarely an emergency.  If there are no critical symptoms it's better to get the experts involved as part of the treatment plan early.  

My mother was admitted to the hospital at the height of the pandemic in Northern New Jersey for six weeks with a cancer recurrence. She was discharged in July and just getting a lung biopsy on September 16th.  It was so maddening, no one was in a hurry to get this done. 

Lung cancer has gotten so sophisticated that the diagnostics and quality of the treatment plan yield better outcomes by selecting the most effective treatment as first line. 

It's probably a good idea to have the pathology report sent to your second opinion.  The initial pathology report will take anywhere from 2-5 days, the comprehensive biomarker panel can take anywhere from 2-3 weeks.  


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