Advise Required on first appointment with oncolgist

Hi all,

I am due to have my first visit with the Oncolgist on tuedsay and don’t know if there are any key questions I need to ask. I’ve been told the apointment may take upto two hours and really don’t know what to expect.

Please help.


hi Sukes

You don’t say how much you have been told already, or what you already know, but for what it’s worth this is the list of questions I went armed with (I was diagnosed with invasive ductal carcinoma on 1 Nov 07, 29mm lump, and initially advised by consultant that mastectomy was recommended option followed by chemo, radiotherapy, more chemo and herceptin).

I have to say, although I went ‘armed’ with these questions - the oncologist answered some on them in her initial chat anyway - there will also be some questions that are by necessity prompted by whatever the oncologist says to you - basically all I would say on this is if you are not sure what any terms/words mean - don’t be afraid to ask the onc to explain them in plain english!

do I need any more tests before treatment begins?
What will the treatment involve?
What will happen if I I dont have the treatment?
How will we know if the treatment is working?
How long will the treatment be?
Where will it be?
What are the side effects/long tem effects?

I ffound that when the onc started talking to me about grading/staging and oestrogen/hormones/HER2 etc I wasn’t taking it all in. Again, if you feel you’ve ‘missed’ something, don’t be afraid to ask them to go over it again.

You are also entitled to written copies of the information so don’t be afraid to ask for copies of things like pathology reports etc, if you feel this would be useful for you.

Hope everything goes ok with your appt

take care

margaret x

Dear Sukes,cannot add much to the great advice Margaret has given,but I would take someone along with you and as you ask the questions,they can take a few notes as its so difficult to remember things once you leave,wishing you the very best of luck,D…x

I took in a long list of questions but the oncologist pretty much answered them all. He glanced at my qus before he started and he did say that the questions I’d typed up were helpful in that it told him how much I wanted to know. Some people want to know everything and some just want to be told the bare minimum.

There’s no right or wrong questions to ask, it’s just what you want to know. I wrote down my qus as they occurred to me and then organised them into a logical order. I also wrote down some things he told me as he was telling me so that I had it clear in my head and didn’t forget.


Hi all,

Thanks for the adivse I will be going tomorrow and I am just about to start my list.

thanks once again