How many Doc's?

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sbmly53
sbmly53 Member Posts: 1,522
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Got the PCP, GYN, Rheumotologist. Now the surgeon, med onc and rad onc. Gotta whittle down, besides follow up labs & mammo there's the dentist.

I finished rads in early March and keep all other appt's - can I ditch the rad onc? He told me, as long as I follow up with someone....

What is everyone else doing? I do not have much time off left and my office really frowns on unpaid time off.

Sue

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  • BlownAway60
    BlownAway60 Member Posts: 851
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    I hear you. Pcp, Gyno,
    I hear you. Pcp, Gyno, Surgeon, Onc, Rad Onc, Dentist, Cardiologist and next week an appointment with the Optometrist. I have to write myself notes and post things to my calendar at work so I don't forget. I had a lot of sick leave built up when I got sick last year, almost 600 hours. The sick leave was gone when I finished chemo. I am using my annual leave now and used it when I did rads. I was lucky through rads I was able to work half days through all 7 weeks. I will still have annual leave left when I retire that they will have to pay me for. If I had run out of leave I could have gone to personnel and requested donated leave. That menas my co-workers could have donated me leave so that I would not have to go without a pay check. Glad I never had to do that. Just in case you are wondering, I am retiring on Sep 1st and I work for the government and I will be retiring with 37 years in civil service.

    I don't know why we can't ditch the rad onc. I have an appointment with him in Oct but don't see the need to see him after that. I think I should be able to ditch the cardiologist too. I only saw him because I had to have a stress test before I had surgery. I guess they all want a piece of the pie.

    Hugs

    Donna
  • carkris
    carkris Member Posts: 4,553 Member
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    I hear you. Pcp, Gyno,
    I hear you. Pcp, Gyno, Surgeon, Onc, Rad Onc, Dentist, Cardiologist and next week an appointment with the Optometrist. I have to write myself notes and post things to my calendar at work so I don't forget. I had a lot of sick leave built up when I got sick last year, almost 600 hours. The sick leave was gone when I finished chemo. I am using my annual leave now and used it when I did rads. I was lucky through rads I was able to work half days through all 7 weeks. I will still have annual leave left when I retire that they will have to pay me for. If I had run out of leave I could have gone to personnel and requested donated leave. That menas my co-workers could have donated me leave so that I would not have to go without a pay check. Glad I never had to do that. Just in case you are wondering, I am retiring on Sep 1st and I work for the government and I will be retiring with 37 years in civil service.

    I don't know why we can't ditch the rad onc. I have an appointment with him in Oct but don't see the need to see him after that. I think I should be able to ditch the cardiologist too. I only saw him because I had to have a stress test before I had surgery. I guess they all want a piece of the pie.

    Hugs

    Donna

    I want to combine the gyno
    I want to combine the gyno and PCP. I want a totally new one, one who is familiar with cancer things. I want to keep my rads onc because I respect his opinion, and I want another opinion besides my med onc. last time I stopped, going to rads onc after a while. It is a hassle particularly with working. congrats on nearing retirement. have some fun!!!
  • TraciInLA
    TraciInLA Member Posts: 1,994 Member
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    2 cancer docs, max
    I finished rads on December 31st, and have seen my radiation oncologist several times for followups since then. At my last appointment, he (very gently) brought up that I would see him for one more 6-month visit, and then that would probably be my last visit with him.

    He, my surgeon, and oncologist work closely together, and they all agree that, after 1 year post-treatment, there's no need to see more than 2 of them. I see my oncologist every 3 months for tumor marker blood work, a physical exam, and to check in on how I'm doing on the Tamoxifen. My surgeon orders my 6-month mammograms, and I see him for an exam after those.

    I was thrilled that my radiation oncologist brought this up, because I too was starting to think -- geez, how many doctors does one girl NEED? And I don't feel nearly as attached to him as I do the others -- radiation was only 7 1/2 weeks at the end of treatment, whereas the others saw me through surgery and chemo, which was much more difficult, physically and emotionally.

    One last thing: I know this doesn't pertain to you, Sue -- but, for others, if you're on Tamoxifen, you MUST see your gynecologist regularly, so you can't ditch that one!

    Traci
  • Double Whammy
    Double Whammy Member Posts: 2,832 Member
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    TraciInLA said:

    2 cancer docs, max
    I finished rads on December 31st, and have seen my radiation oncologist several times for followups since then. At my last appointment, he (very gently) brought up that I would see him for one more 6-month visit, and then that would probably be my last visit with him.

    He, my surgeon, and oncologist work closely together, and they all agree that, after 1 year post-treatment, there's no need to see more than 2 of them. I see my oncologist every 3 months for tumor marker blood work, a physical exam, and to check in on how I'm doing on the Tamoxifen. My surgeon orders my 6-month mammograms, and I see him for an exam after those.

    I was thrilled that my radiation oncologist brought this up, because I too was starting to think -- geez, how many doctors does one girl NEED? And I don't feel nearly as attached to him as I do the others -- radiation was only 7 1/2 weeks at the end of treatment, whereas the others saw me through surgery and chemo, which was much more difficult, physically and emotionally.

    One last thing: I know this doesn't pertain to you, Sue -- but, for others, if you're on Tamoxifen, you MUST see your gynecologist regularly, so you can't ditch that one!

    Traci

    I want to keep them all!
    Try having 2 diagnoses at the same time! I have breast cancer surgeon, medical oncologist, and will soon see the radiologic oncologist for the breast cancer. I don't know if I'll need to see the surgeon forever, but I do see him for a 6-month check in November. I'll have to ask him about that when I see him then. I have only a gynecological oncologist for the endometrial cancer and I want his trained eye following that for as long as he wants to, and when he's done with me (I hope he will be) I'll heed his advice whether I should have a gynecologist or if my primary care physician will suffice. She physician is my rock. I hope she never leaves. She is very in tune with women's issues. There are a number of other subspecialists I see for other issues, but they've been put on hold for a while while undergoing bc treatments. I will get back to them eventually. In terms of all the oncologists, I like that they all talk to each other and I also like being able to bounce the same questions off each of them. I also still talk to and ask questions of my primary care physician. I do have a hard time knowing who's actually in charge of me for what, tho. The gynecological oncologist is the most difficult to touch base with on an as needed basis because of his schedule but I've finally got the routine figured out with the advice nurse (I think). For now, I'm keeping them all because I want them all involved.

    Suzanne
  • jk1952
    jk1952 Member Posts: 613
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    I want to keep them all!
    Try having 2 diagnoses at the same time! I have breast cancer surgeon, medical oncologist, and will soon see the radiologic oncologist for the breast cancer. I don't know if I'll need to see the surgeon forever, but I do see him for a 6-month check in November. I'll have to ask him about that when I see him then. I have only a gynecological oncologist for the endometrial cancer and I want his trained eye following that for as long as he wants to, and when he's done with me (I hope he will be) I'll heed his advice whether I should have a gynecologist or if my primary care physician will suffice. She physician is my rock. I hope she never leaves. She is very in tune with women's issues. There are a number of other subspecialists I see for other issues, but they've been put on hold for a while while undergoing bc treatments. I will get back to them eventually. In terms of all the oncologists, I like that they all talk to each other and I also like being able to bounce the same questions off each of them. I also still talk to and ask questions of my primary care physician. I do have a hard time knowing who's actually in charge of me for what, tho. The gynecological oncologist is the most difficult to touch base with on an as needed basis because of his schedule but I've finally got the routine figured out with the advice nurse (I think). For now, I'm keeping them all because I want them all involved.

    Suzanne

    Sue, I very dutifully
    Sue, I very dutifully visited my radiation oncologist every six months, then every year for a few years, and I found that it was a waste of my time. I rarely saw my doctor: it was almost always the PA or a substitute doctor they had pulled out of retirement. I finally told the substitute that I didn't want to continue, and they said fine as long as I was checked by other doctors.

    I didn't feel this way about any of the other doctors, though. And, I'd like to reiterate Traci's comments: if you're on Tamixofen, it is important that you visit your gynecologist regularly.

    Joyce
  • roseann4
    roseann4 Member Posts: 992 Member
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    jk1952 said:

    Sue, I very dutifully
    Sue, I very dutifully visited my radiation oncologist every six months, then every year for a few years, and I found that it was a waste of my time. I rarely saw my doctor: it was almost always the PA or a substitute doctor they had pulled out of retirement. I finally told the substitute that I didn't want to continue, and they said fine as long as I was checked by other doctors.

    I didn't feel this way about any of the other doctors, though. And, I'd like to reiterate Traci's comments: if you're on Tamixofen, it is important that you visit your gynecologist regularly.

    Joyce

    I was released from radiologist oncologist.
    After 1 1/2 years, my rad onc released me so I only need to see my surgeon, onc and pc.

    Roseann
  • 24242
    24242 Member Posts: 1,398
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    roseann4 said:

    I was released from radiologist oncologist.
    After 1 1/2 years, my rad onc released me so I only need to see my surgeon, onc and pc.

    Roseann

    Doctors
    Isn't it interesting that employers need worders to make the ceo's the money but don't care that much about employees at all. There are employers out there that realize your worth and what you are to companies but they seem far and few in between. One thing very wrong with this world we live in and why rich get richer and poor poorer.
    I have to ask all how often did we go to the doctor before? Some of us quit going to the doctors before our diagnosis because they kept telling us everything was ok. Not easy giving your life up to them but that is what we have to do to make sure we are OK! I am sorry to say if you are in Canada that means a battery of tests each visit and every 6 months for first couple of years then once a year for a few after so 5 years one should keep going to those visits. If you are not feeling well anytime before visits you should be talking at lengths about that too.
    Doctors are there for us and the better they know us the easier it is for them to see when we are not well. Having to convince people of that is a very hard job and one most of us cannot do...
    I hope that your work starts to be a wind of change and quits penalizing people for getting ill usually due to their stresses they put on us as well as taking care of the family most of have. At one time employers did care about the workers and the work they did instead of just the money to be made and the shareholders investment.
    If you love your job fight like hell for it because that too is part of surviving getting that what we truly want.
    Tara
  • MAJW
    MAJW Member Posts: 2,510 Member
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    DITCHING THE DOC
    My Radiation Oncologist "released" me once my treatments were finished......his job is done...BUT you need to be followed by your Medical Oncologist.....Mine will follow me for 5 years..with each appointment after the first year down from every every three WEEKS...to every 3 months.....to every 6 months, which is where I am now.....then providing there's "nothing new to report to him, ie symptoms, etc, it will be once a year....Of course you need to follow his recommendation on mammo's.......I also see my GYN yearly......

    Oh to be rid of them all......chuckle chuckle....but thank GOD they are there!
    Peace be with you,
    Nancy
  • Marcia527
    Marcia527 Member Posts: 2,729
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    I ditched my rad doc right
    I ditched my rad doc right after rads were finished. I couldn't see any sense in seeing him as long as the onc was checking it out. I only go to the PCP when I have a problem and the surgeon saw me for awhile (about a year) and retired so I didn't bother with his replacement. So for a year I saw two (onc and surgeon) and for the following four saw just the onc. I agree that you can't cut out the GYN if you are on Tamoxifen.
  • cahjah75
    cahjah75 Member Posts: 2,631
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    Sue, boy do I have
    a lot of drs! I have a PCP, gyn (who found my lump and delivered my kids), a orthopedic surgeon for the knees, one for the shoulders and one for the spine, a rheumatologist, an endocronologist, breast oncology surgeon, oncologist (who still sees my sister after 8 years) and one wonders why I need a THERAPIST! I still don't know if I'll be having rads yet. Just started chemo.
    Char
  • MNLynn
    MNLynn Member Posts: 224
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    My rad onc said that I do
    My rad onc said that I do not need to keep seeing him. I had 27 rad treatments - saw him once a week during treatments, then had a 3 week follow-up visit. That was it . . . I don't need to see him again. Are you having any problems that would make him want to follow up with you? Did the radiation affect your heart or lungs?

    I will be seeing my medical onc all the time, now - esp since I just started on Arimidex (didn't have chemo, though).

    Wishing you all the best . . .

    ♥ Lynn ♥