What type of cancer do I have?
Invasive or in situ (contained within the duct or lobule)
Positive for estrogen receptor (ER+), progesterone receptor (PR+) or HER2 (positive for a protein called human epidermal growth factor receptor 2)?
Or am I considered Triple Negative (breast cancer that does not test positive for any of the above receptors)?
Inflammatory (developed from cells that line the milk ducts of the breast and then spread beyond the ducts)?
Do you know anything about the type of breast cancer I was diagnosed with?
How much experience do you—or other members of the cancer care team—have treating this type of cancer?
Does your facility have a cancer panel, where your cancer care team gets together and looks at a case from all sides - pathologist, radiologist, surgeon, and you?
Can you better explain and translate my prognostic?
What are the risk factors with this cancer?
What lifestyle changes would you recommend I make?
How can I keep myself as healthy as possible during treatment?
Should I do any further testing? Blood? genetic testing? MRI?
Do you recommend a genetic counselor? breast surgeon?
Would you like to follow me through treatment? If so, how often?
What is the stage of my cancer? What does this mean?
Has cancer spread to my lymph nodes or any other parts of my body?
How is staging used to help decide the best type of cancer treatment?
What are my treatment options?
Which treatments, or combination of treatments, do you recommend? Why?
Are there different options? If so, how is the decision about which one to do made?
What about Immunotheraphy?
Do you recommend chemo or surgery first? Why?
If I have surgery after, who will put on my port?
What clinical trials (research studies involving volunteers) are open to me? Where are they located, and how do I find out more about them?
Who will be part of my cancer care team, and what does each member do?
What is the expected timeline for my treatment? Do I need treatment immediately?
How will this treatment affect my daily life? Will I be able to work, exercise, and perform my usual activities?
What are the short- and long-term side effects of this treatment?
Will this treatment affect my fertility (ability to become pregnant)?
How will you treat side effects that I experience during treatment?
I heard about a cold cap against hair loss, is that available at your facility, or do I have to be in a trial for that?
If this was your Mother or daughter, is this the treatment you would suggest and what else would you make them do to heal better?
What support services are available to me? To my family?
May I contact you or the nurse if I have additional questions?
Whom should I call with questions or concerns during non-business hours?
If I'm worried about managing the costs related to my cancer care, who can help me with these concerns?
Who handles health insurance concerns in your office?
What follow-up tests will I need, and how often will I need them?
Will you be doing tumor markers?
Can I meet your chemo nurses?
Can I visit the infusion center?
Is there anything else I should be asking?
Can you explain ALL of the terms in my pathology report and can I have a copy of my report?
Are there any other tests I need or should consider at this time? (including genetic testing)
What treatment options are you recommending and why? (surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, hormonal therapy or a combination)
Do I need a mastectomy? If so, and I choose to undergo reconstruction would you recommend breast reconstruction immediately following the mastectomy?
Will treatment affect my future fertility? What are my options for fertility preservation?
Can you refer me to other doctors I might need?
What are the potential risks and side effects of the proposed treatments?
What is the timing and order of my proposed treatment plan?
Can I explore complementary treatments such as acupuncture and massage therapy during treatment? If so, can you recommend a facility?
Should I have someone accompany me to treatment and will I need to take time off work?
How much time can I take before making a decision about surgery?