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doctor visits

ksusan
Posts: 7
Joined: Aug 2013

When should you see your oncologist? My family doctor isn't familiar with and can't advise on lung cancer or any related  symptoms to it because as he said, he's just a general practitioner. My oncologist has insisted I report to my f.p. rather than to her, any new symptoms. I went to oncologist this week because I've been experiencing neuropathy which is new. I am frustrated. Is this normal practice with oncologists? 

Ladylacy
Posts: 471
Joined: Apr 2012

Have you been seeing a lung specialist?  They would be the ones, I would think, that would be seeing you.  Your family doctor, at least is honest.  And no many don't know about any type of cancer.  My husband, has been seeing an oncologist for about 10 years now for a rare blood cancer.  3 years ago when laryngeal cancer was discovered, he was the one that did the chemo.  Radiation and chemo were done first.  They thought that got it, but it didn't and he was referred to a Head and Neck specialist.  He was the one who did the surgery and the follow ups.  Then a year later he found a tumor at the cervical of my husband's esophagus.  More radiation and chemo, surgery ruled out.  Four months later, it reoccurred and spread to his right lung.  My husband opted for quality over quantity.  We were at a cancer center in Atlanta.  Never did really like the second oncologist who treated him.  In fact, he said when the reoccurrence and spread happened that his lung cancer was too small and he didn't need chemo now.  Sounded very strange to us.  Our specialist said there was nothing more he could do, since my husband elected no further treatment.

We now follow up with the first oncologist.  Best advice is to get a second opinion as to who you should be seeing.

Wishing you the best -- Sharon

dennycee
Posts: 658
Joined: Mar 2011

The dreaded double entry!

dennycee
Posts: 658
Joined: Mar 2011

When I finished my cancer treatment I was given a list of things I should contact my oncologist about and everything else I should call my GP or Internal Med dr about.  It may take a day or two but I will try to find it.  

Essentially (to the best of my slightly chemo brained memory), contact the oncologist if there are certain neurological side effects, sudden trouble breathing and not much more.  okay your 3,6,9 &12 month Ct results.  Everything else should be handled or referred by th GP.  It was my GP that put me on gabapentin for neuropathy and nerve pain.  When I needed phys therapy, it was my GP who made the referral that helped with so much off my pain.  When my vertebrae and ribs started breaking as a side effect of the cancer treatment, it was the GP who referred me for kyphoplasty and a specialist for the bones.  My oonco would just shrug and say its part of the process.  I didn't think it had to be and got referrals from her.  

If your GP is not comfortable with these, see if there is a Palliative Care physician you can add to your team.  You'll be glad you did and probably a lot more comfortable with your care.  

ksusan
Posts: 7
Joined: Aug 2013

No one ever mentioned bone problems to me. This is aggravating as I've complained about severe pain in back and got a blank stare. 

dennycee
Posts: 658
Joined: Mar 2011

Before cancer treatment, I had osteopenia.  The chemo, radiation and steroids combined to push me into osteoporosis.  The vertebrae on either side of the cradle used for radiation crumbled (compression fractures).  They in turn caused the ones below it to suffer more stress and strain causing another one to crumble.  In the process of putting in a pleurX catheter a rib cracked.  My shower chair collapsed causing several cracked ribs.  It's not uncommon.  Increasing my Vit D and calcium, taking fosamax has reinforced them.  Please talk to your primary care doc or a palliative care doc and get the back taken care of.   There is no reason for you to have to go through extra pain.  

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