What Should You Ask Your Doctor About Ovarian Cancer?

It is important for you to have honest, open discussions with your cancer care team. They want to answer all of your questions, no matter how trivial you might think they are. Here are some questions to consider:

  • What type of ovarian cancer do I have?
  • Has my cancer spread beyond the ovaries?
  • What are the cell type, microscopic grade, and stage of my cancer? What does that mean?
  • What treatments do you recommend for me? Why?
  • What risks or side effects should I expect?
  • What are the chances my cancer will recur (come back) with the treatments we have discussed?
  • What should I do to be ready for treatment?
  • Should I follow a special diet?
  • Will I be able to have children after my treatment?
  • What is my expected prognosis?
  • Will I lose my hair?
  • What do I tell my children, husband, parents, and other family members?
  • Should I think about genetic testing? What are my testing options? Should I take a home-based genetic test? What would the pros and cons of testing be?

In addition to these sample questions, be sure to write down some of your own. For instance, you might want specific information about anticipated recovery times so that you can plan your work schedule. You may also want to ask about second opinions or about clinical trials for which you may qualify.

The American Cancer Society medical and editorial content team
Our team is made up of doctors and master's-prepared nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.

Last Medical Review: April 11, 2018 Last Revised: April 11, 2018

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