Talking to Your Doctor About Breast Cancer
by Michelle Badash, MS
You have a unique medical history. Therefore, it is essential to talk with your doctor about your personal risk factors and/or experience with breast cancer. By talking openly and regularly with your doctor, you can take an active role in your care.
General Tips for Gathering Information
Here are some tips that will make it easier for you to talk to your doctor:
Specific Questions to Ask Your doctor
About Breast Cancer
About Your Risk of Developing Breast Cancer
About Treatment Options
If you have been diagnosed with breast cancer, you should first try to get at least one other opinion from another doctor. If both you and your doctor agree with the diagnosis, you may want to get specific information about the surgery, chemotherapy, hormonal therapy, and the radiation therapy. No one doctor will likely answer all of your questions about all of these therapies, but he should be able to give you some general pointers. Additionally, you should get very specific information from the individual specialist.
About Lifestyle Changes
Breast cancer. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov . Accessed January 31, 2006.
Detailed guide: breast cancer. American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org . Accessed January 31, 2006.
Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation website. Available at: http://www.komen.org . Accessed January 31, 2006.
Last reviewed December 2013 by Michael Woods, MD
Last updated 01/15/2014