Questions to Ask

If breast cancer surgery is recommended, here are some questions you may wish to ask your Surgeon:

1. How much of my breast needs to be removed?
2. How will my breast look after surgery?
3. What should I expect after surgery like drains, movement, comfort, nerve damage and any ongoing changes?
4. Will I have feeling in my breast?
5. Will I be able to still breastfeed in the future?
6. When should I begin to use the affected arm, and what arm exercises should I do to prevent stiffness?
7. Will I require further treatment?
8. If I choose to have implants, will they need replacing in the future?
9. How will the breast surgery affect my work/sex/physical life?
10. Can I talk to someone who has had the operation?
11.How much will the surgery cost?
12. When will my first follow-up appointment be scheduled?
13. What support is available after the surgery - lymphoedema prevention, psychological assistance, survivorship care/lifestyle advice?   

If chemotherapy, radiation, hormonal and/or targeted therapy is recommended, ask your Oncologist:

1. What do my pathology results mean?
2. How extensive is my cancer?
3. How long will my treatment take and how much will it cost?
4. Are there any new treatments coming out that I should consider?
5. Are there any clinical drug trials which I could get access too? Here or overseas?
6. Who will be following my case?
7. What are the side effects of this treatment?
8. Who do I phone if I'm having bad side effects or feeling really unwell?
9. Is there a social welfare benefit I can receive to help me pay for treatment costs? What support services are available?
10. Can I have children after treatment? Will it affect my fertility?
11. Can I still work, drive and/or exercise over the course of my treatment?