Oncologist referral

Hi, i had a mastectomy on the 18th dec, referred to oncologist on 5th jan. Their secretary rang today to arrange a phone consultation. In between I have been referred from one oncologist to another (different hospitals).
Is this normal, I was expecting to actually see someone face to face.
Also, will they expect me to make a decision on my further treatment straightaway?

Hi loz77

Thanks for posting.

It’s understandable that you are wondering why you have been referred to two different oncologists at different hospitals. In some treatment centres, treatments such as chemotherapy , hormone therapy, or other drug treatments may be the responsibility of one oncologist while a different oncologist is responsible for radiotherapy. In some centres the same oncologist does both.

Your treatment team will be able to tell you what happens in your area and can explain why you have been referred to two different hospitals. If you have a breast care nurse, ask her to check this for you. She will also be able to let you know why a telephone appointment was arranged. Sometimes a telephone appointment is offered if there is likely to be a delay with face-to-face appointments. However, do let them know if you would prefer a face-to-face appointment.

People often need some time to decide about treatments and usually your oncologist will explain when they would recommend any further treatments to start. Some people may need to have further discussions with the oncologist or breast care nurse before making a final decision.

Talking to someone who has had a similar experience can often be helpful. Our Someone Like Me service can match you with a trained volunteer who’s had a similar experience to you. You can be in touch with your volunteer by phone or email and they can share their personal experiences to answer your questions, offer support or simply listen to how you are feeling.

You can ring the Someone Like Me team on 0114 263 6490 or email them at someone.likeme@breastcancernow.org, so they can then match you to your volunteer.

We offer a range of free supportive services for anyone who has had a diagnosis of breast cancer which you may be interested in. They include face to face and online courses and events.

For more details about all of these services, please see the information on the link, or call our free helpline

Do call our helpline if you would like to talk this through or have any further questions. The helpline team have time to listen, talk things through and signpost you to more support and information if necessary. Your call will be confidential, and the number is free from UK landlines and all mobile networks. The number is 0808 800 6000, (Relay UK - prefix 18001).

If you would prefer one of our nurses to call you. To do this, please complete this form ticking the box agreeing to a call back.

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Best wishes


Breast Care Nurse

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