Questions to ask your doctor

You likely have a lot of questions if you’ve been diagnosed with cancer. Your cancer care team will want to answer them, but it helps to know what to ask. Here is a list of questions we recommend that you can ask to help you better understand your cancer and your options. Also, the time you spend with your doctor is limited, so list your questions from the most important to least important in case you run out of time.

Suggested questions

  • What type of cancer do I have?
  • What is the stage of my cancer?
  • Has my cancer spread to other parts of my body?
  • Will I need any more tests?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • How do these treatments affect my long-term outcome (prognosis)? Will any of them cure my cancer?
  • What are the potential side effects of each treatment?
  • What treatment do you recommend and why?
  • What advice would you give a friend or family member in my situation?
  • What if I don’t want treatment?
  • Are there ways to relieve the signs and symptoms I’m experiencing?
  • Can I enroll in a clinical trial?
  • Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can take with me? What websites do you recommend?
  • In addition to the questions that you’ve prepared to ask your doctor, don’t hesitate to ask clarifying questions during your appointment if at any time you don’t understand something.
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