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asking doctor's questions, Cancer Treatment Center of America?

Pam86
Posts: 3
Joined: Oct 2017

Is it unrealistic to want to ask a question of the radiololgist oncologist before the appt 1-2 weeks away?  My gyn said the side effects of radiation may be worse for smaller people (could include permanent diarrhea or urinary issues), which made me wonder if the radiation does more damage because it's too strong for that size person.  So I wanted to see if the radiologist tailors the treatment for smaller weight, bc if not, then I want to look into 2nd opinion.  However, the receptionist wouldn't relay a question before my appt.   Same with the gyn - the dr said she'd call me about biopsy and CT, but never did, so I asked receptionist to remind her to call me.  I still didn't hear back, so the next day I left msg for nurse but never heard back.  It's been one week since CT scan and two weeks since biopsy (tho I was told the uterine cancer has returned, just don't know stage), and two days since my call to nurse.

I'm wondering if I'd have better results at somewhere like Cancer Treatment Center of America?  If anyone has experience with them and would like to share it with me, please private message me.  Thanks!

 

derMaus's picture
derMaus
Posts: 561
Joined: Nov 2016

I have a friend who used them and was very pleased. I'll PM you.

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 2178
Joined: Mar 2010

Get as much info as possible about the potential/likely side effects.  Also get info on the value of the treatments.  Then you have to weigh one against the other.  For my case, potential (likely) problems with radiation far outweighed the potential, but uncertain, benefits.  I chose quality of life; we'll see how it goes.

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2937
Joined: Mar 2013

Miss Pam, doctor's office NOT answering you is NOT acceptable.  They radiologist office made me so mad I did end up telling the doctor, "I'm sure this is every day businee for the nurses taking the call but I assure you it's not for ME.  If she is having a bad day she should NOT BE TALKING WITH PATIENTS".  He gave me his personal cell and said to call anytime. 

You need to be an advocate for yourself.  The healthcare industry has NO IDEA how to treat patients and families.  Patients and families want answers - and we deserve them.

Hummingbird6
Posts: 12
Joined: Aug 2017

Sorry to hear of your news of recurrence, as well as feeling aboandoned by your treatment team.

It sounds like radiation has been recommended, and hopefully once you meet the radiologist, all your questions will get answered. I wrote down all my questions for the first appointment, as well as the answers.  My radiologist went  in to detail about how they image and avoid damage to neighboring structures, and how carefully the doses are calculated. Because the external beam radiation treatments are daily for 5 weeks or so, it may be much easier to have that done close to home rather than travelling a distance to another Center. 

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 906
Joined: Jan 2016

I have learned that I need to be proactive when dealing with my cancer center. The main problem I have is there are only 2gynexhologicL oncologists and they are severely overbooked. I kept having appointments cancelled until I hade 5months I between my appointments instead of three! This will not happen again. I will be wY more pushy should this happen again or should I say so it won’t happen ! As others have said, you would want to have radiation close by since its daily. It is quick, but I can’t imagine driving an hour daily for treatment and I do know people who did.:(

Pam86
Posts: 3
Joined: Oct 2017

We ended up visiting the Cancer Treatment Center of America (the one near Atlanta) on Wednesday and asked a couple of men sitting in the lobby how they liked it and they loved it, and I also asked a couple of ladies I saw in the bathroom. They loved it, too, so I kept the CTCA in the running.  Then I found out on Thursday that my CT scan results were no good bc somehow they didn't do the IV contrast after the oral contrast. So on Friday morning I signed up for the CTCA and have felt a sense of peace ever since.  Thanks for your replys!

Pam86
Posts: 3
Joined: Oct 2017

Forgot to say...  the Cancer Treatment Center of America has a hotel attached to it, and has deals with nearby hotels (along with transportation), for patients.  The room are $50/night.  So I'll be staying there five days/week, with my husband driving me down on Monday mornings and picking me up on Fridays.  I went yesterday and today for evaluation, met with my nurse navigator, the internist, nutritionist and went to patient orientation.  I'll talk to the oncologist Monday and probably start treatment the next day!

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