Just Diagnosed With Ovarian Cancer -- Now What?
Collecting Your Thoughts and QuestionsGoing in for your second opinion, or for your other medical appointments for that matter, can be so overwhelming that your main goal is simply to make it through the appointment. Any questions you may have thought to ask beforehand may get lost as you are just trying to breathe. Trying to stay focused with a clear head is incredibly difficult for anyone going through this journey, so try to plan ahead. Putting together a list of questions or concerns before your appointments can help to put your mind at ease and give you the information you need to fight your battle.
Talking to your healthcare provider is an important part of making informed decisions about your plan of action. Some possible questions you may want to discuss with your healthcare provide include the following:
- What do my laboratory test results mean?
- What type of ovarian cancer do I have?
- What stage of cancer is it and what does that mean?
- What are my treatment options?
- What treatment plan do you recommend and why?
- Are there clinical trials I could participate in?
- What are the potential side effects (short-term and long-term) of the treatment options?
- Will this affect my ability to have children? Do I need to see a fertility specialist?
- How does this affect my daily life -- can I work, exercise, perform daily activities?
- What does it mean that ovarian cancer is a "chronic disease"?
- How do I manage the costs related to my care? Can someone help me with these concerns?
- What are the chances of the cancer returning?
- What support services are available for me and my family?
Having these written down and having someone come with you to your appointments can help you to relax in knowing that your questions and concerns can be addressed. Although the questions seem to be a bottomless pit, try to take one question at a time. Each woman's situation is different, and while one treatment plan may be best for one woman, it may not be right for your particular situation. Having your questions and concerns answered will help you to come to the best decision on which option is best for you.