In a matter of minutes, a leukemia diagnosis can change your entire life. You’re suddenly faced with a number of decisions that you might not know how to make. Where should you go for treatment? What kind of treatment should you have? What about clinical trials? And what do you tell your family?
Talk with an experienced oncologist
At Moffitt Cancer Center, we know that a leukemia diagnosis can bring about quite a bit of uncertainty. We want you to make the best decisions for your unique needs, and we’re committed to providing you with all of the support and information you need to do so. We encourage you to take advantage of our oncologists’ expertise – we have a number of oncologists who specialize exclusively in the diagnosis and treatment of leukemia – by asking any questions you might have, such as:
- In basic terms, what is leukemia?
- What type of leukemia do I have?
- Should I get a second opinion? Do you have any recommendations as to whom I should see?
- Do I need to start treatment right away?
- What are the treatment options for my specific leukemia diagnosis?
- How many times have you personally performed this type of treatment?
- Should I consider a clinical trial? Are there any that are currently appropriate for my situation?
- What are the factors that could impact my prognosis? Is there anything specific that I can do to improve my outcome?
- Are there any supportive care services that I should look into?
Tips for communicating with your treatment team
When it comes to your leukemia diagnosis, no question is too small or insignificant to ask. When you choose an oncologist, you’ll want to choose someone who takes the time to fully answer your questions in a way that you can understand. You should feel comfortable asking for clarification if necessary, and you should never feel pressured to rush through an appointment. If you find it helpful, you may want to write down a list of questions before each visit so you don’t accidentally forget something important. Or, you might ask a friend or family member to accompany you to help you remember your questions and your oncologist’s answers.
If you’d like to discuss your leukemia diagnosis with an experienced oncologist at Moffitt, you can do so with or without a physician’s referral. Call 1-888-663-3488 or submit a new patient registration form online to request an appointment.