It’s important to have honest, open discussions with your cancer care team. You should feel free to ask any question, no matter how small it might seem. Here are some questions you might want to ask:
- What kind of mesothelioma do I have?
- Has my cancer spread beyond where it started?
- What is the stage (extent) of the cancer, and what does that mean?
- Is my cancer likely to be resectable (removable by surgery)?
- Do I need other tests before we can decide on treatment?
- Do I need to see any other types of doctors?
- How much experience do you have treating this type of cancer?
- Should I get a second opinion? Can you recommend someone?
- What are my treatment options?
- What is the goal of treatment?
- What do you recommend and why?
- How quickly do we need to decide on treatment?
- What should I do to be ready for treatment?
- How long will treatment last? What will it be like? Where will it be done?
- What risks or side effects are there to the treatments you suggest?
- How will treatment affect my daily activities?
- What will we do if the treatment doesn’t work or if the cancer recurs?
- What type of follow-up might I need after treatment?
Along with these sample questions, be sure to write down some of your own. For instance, you might want more information about recovery times. Or you may want to ask if you qualify for any clinical trials.
Keep in mind that doctors aren’t the only ones who can give you information. Other health care professionals, such as nurses and social workers, can answer some of your questions. To find out more about speaking with your health care team, see Talking With Your Doctor.
Last Revised: 02/17/2016