Anyone changed Oncs? Advice+ Experiences please :)

Hi Ladies
I am considering changing my onclologist as I feel she has not got my best interests at heart and I would much prefer someone who is going to really push themselves to keep me here!
My only concern is that I will rub the oncs up the wrong way as they are all colleagues at the end of the day- whoever I change to will be a colleague of the one I want to complain about. Im also concerned that the process of changing oncs will ultimately slow things down in terms of commencing a new treatment regime etc. This is likely as I will probably have to change hospital.
I am based under clatterbridge but am seen at one of their satellite clinics. If anyone can recommend a positive onc from there, who goes the extra mile, thinks outside the box etc, would you please pm me. I dont want to jump from the frying pan into the fire so-to-speak so recommendations would be good :slight_smile:
Also, can anyone with advanced bc who has gone through the process of requesting a change of oncs, let me know what to do and how it all went. Being stage 4, I want someone who I can at least respect and believe in.
Any advice would be great- need to make a decision asap!
Thanks in advance
Tina xx

Hi, as you know I’ve recently moved from being under the care of the Christie (huge) to going to a rural quiet clinic with an oncologist who visits the island once a week. I can have chemo here on island and scans, but if i need radiotherapy i have to go to clatterbridge. I’m going to try and keep all my breast surgery at the Nightingale centre at Wythenshaw hospital (manchester) as they have been phenomenal. It was a tough decision about leaving the Christie or not with all it’s innovations, trials etc etc. But its the best thing I’ve ever done. I had to go every 6 weeks and the thought of having to go there made me feel sick. There were just sooo many people. I took a number and waited in line for bloods, then my number was called again to go and see a know-all registrar, desperate to recruit onto clinical trials. I ended up feeling like they often had their own agenda to fulfill before asking me about my care etc etc. I know other people have positive experiences here, but the atmosphere was just not for me. I go every 4 weeks now to my new oncologist who actively listens, doesn’t patronize and has referred me to other specialists that the Christie didn’t bother to. For example, when I started Zometa, he wanted me to make sure I’d seen maxillofacial surgeon, the Christies simply advised me to see a dentist. Also, one of my scans (last year) showed that I have a prolapsed disc in my spine, the Christie did nothing my new onc has referred this on to a spine specialist. If it wasn’t cancer the Christie weren’t bothered and if you weren’t eligible for a clinical trial or didn’t want to take part, again I felt like they weren’t interested. I’m having a must better experience now, I have access to the same treatments however because I have trust in my new consultant it just makes things easier. I can honestly tell you that I have been a nurse for 8 years in medicine and the profession is very accustomed to complaints. I would be very shocked if you had reprisals from changing consultants and I’d try to not let this influence your decision. I wasn’t happy, but I thought I wouldn’t be happy with anywhere because of the association with my illness. I’ve changed now because I’ve moved house and I’m really pleased I did.

Good luck x x x x

Tina I changed onc but I also changed hos I just done it through my gp if u know what hos u want to go to u can ring the pals team at that hos or just ask gp to refer you I wldnt worry about upsetting onc it’s y right to change I’m so glad I did ive no regretted it one bit

Thanks annie + laura for your replies :slight_smile:
I am going to start the ball rolling tomorrow- apparently it can be initiated by my bcn, who will ensure it’s done quickly + all notes are transfered etc. I can do without additional stress my life is difficult enough + I need my care to be managed by someone who hasn’t just written me off!
Annie I will pm you later
anyone else with experiences of swapping oncs?
Tina x

Sorry I meant to say thanks to the lovely ladies that have sent me a pm :slight_smile: I really appreciate you sharing your experiences with me.
I will reply later whilst my little man is out with his dad xx

I have pm’d you too Tina.


Hi Tina, I am in a different area to you but feeling similar to you -I am stage 4 with bone mets, and I feel written off too so am going to ask for second opinion - elsewhere and at present hospital. I am a nurse too and know what you mean about p***ing them off but it shouldn’t happen and if it does - so what? I had chemo prior to surgery in 2009 and my surgeon said it was not possible to have a mastectomy and implant (as would need rads) and certainly not possible to have reduction of other breast at the same time as this was classed as “cosmetic”. He more or less said he would take my affected breast away and “tidy me up” next year. By chance another patient told about the fantastic Oncoplastic surgeon AT THE SAME HOSPITAL, and urged me to change. I was worried about being blacklisted but as fellow “sufferer” said - so what, its your body, your life, do what’s best for YOU. I phoned my GP and asked for second opinion from other surgeon, no problem, no fuss, no delay. I had to haggle a bit for reduction at same time but in the end had skin-sparing mastectomy with saline implant, changed a year later for silicone. His attitude was totally different to my first surgeon.

So - go ahead,and request a second opinion. I am not going to continue with a gloomy Oncologist who has given up on me and doesn’t even bother to explain things to me - I always end up talking to the BCN the following day.

We have to have confidence in the person deciding our fate so get moving on that second opinion NOW. I will be watching to see how you get on and wish you the best of luck.

Hi Tina,

I changed oncs and hospital. What a blessed relief, I felt as though a black cloud had lifted.
Definitely go for it.

Tiny Tina

My GP has referred me to the Royal Marsden - if they can’t help well, at least I will have tried the experts. Good luck, you owe it to yourself to have faith in your medical team - you don’t have to explain why you want a second opinion.