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Questions to Ask Your Treatment Team

In general, follow these guidelines:

  • If you don’t know…ASK
  • If you don’t understand…ASK
  • If you’re not sure…ASK
  • Repeat back what you think you heard
  • Make sure you understand what you need to do

General Questions

  • What is the name of my cancer?
  • Which part of my body is affected?

About Tests

  • Why do I need these tests?
  • What will you learn from this test?
  • How accurate is this test?
  • Is there any risk to the test?
  • Will the result of this test make any difference to the treatment you provide?
  • What are the results of the test I already had?


About Treatment

  • What treatments are available for my type of cancer?
  • What treatments do you recommend?
  • How long will the treatment last?
  • What are the possible side effects of the treatment?
  • Can the side effects be prevented or controlled?
  • Are the side effects temporary or permanent?
  • How is the treatment given?
  • How does the treatment work?
  • Will I receive treatment as an outpatient or be admitted to hospital?
  • How much will the treatment cost?
  • What if this treatment does not work?


About Participating in Clinical Trials

  • Would a clinical trial or investigational treatment be appropriate for me?
  • What benefit is there for me?
  • What are the risks for me?
  • Why are these studies important?
  • What are the goals of the study?
  • Do I have the right to refuse?
  • Can I withdraw from the clinical trial anytime?