Questions to Ask Your Doctor about Mesothelioma
The diagnosis of mesothelioma is very serious and may be overwhelming and affects all aspects of life in a profound way. In order to make the best use of your limited time with healthcare providers involved in your care, it might be useful to consider the following questions, as well as questions of your own, and we recommend actively preparing for each healthcare visit by writing them down ahead of time.
You should feel comfortable asking all these questions and other ones that may be relevant to you. Important questions to ask after being diagnosed with mesothelioma may include:
- How do we know I have mesothelioma?
- Should I have a biopsy, and if so, what kind of biopsy should it be?
- How will we know how extensive the disease is, and what does that mean for me?
- How much experience do you and your colleagues have in treating mesothelioma?
- If you don't have much experience, can you refer me to a center that does?
- Will my case be discussed in a group of experts from different specialties?
- What is the goal of the treatment you are proposing? Is the intent to cure me from the disease or manage its symptoms? What are the side effects of the proposed treatment and how will they affect my quality of life?
- How much will this cost for me? Can you help me identify somebody who might be able to answer these questions?
- Am I a candidate for any clinical trial?
- What are my options for palliative care to address management of my shortness of breath and pain?
- Can you help me and my family make decisions about how I will be treated at the end of my life?
This content was developed in partnership with the CHEST Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the American College of Chest Physicians.