If you or a loved have been recently diagnosed with mesothelioma or have been experiencing symptoms of mesothelioma or other asbestos-related disease, it is important to immediately locate a mesothelioma specialist. Your regular primary care physician will not be as familiar with current treatment options, including possible clinical trials. Mesothelioma doctors are knowledgeable about the various types of this aggressive form of cancer, as well as the current treatments and research being conducted.
A mesothelioma diagnosis is quite devastating to the patient and their loved ones. It has emotional, psychological, physical, and financial repercussions that can paralyze all those involved. While there is no cure for this aggressive disease caused by asbestos exposure, it is critical that you immediately find the right mesothelioma doctor for you. Time is of the essence to outline your course of action and begin a treatment plan.
Questions to Ask When Searching for a Mesothelioma Doctor
How do you know which mesothelioma doctor to choose? How do you know if they are the right one for you? First, ask your family doctor for recommendations of mesothelioma specialists in your area. If your mesothelioma diagnosis was caused by occupational exposure, then most likely, there are others that have received the same diagnosis as you. Contact former coworkers to see if they have any mesothelioma doctors they would recommend. Once you have the names and numbers, make your appointments.
To help you evaluate which doctor is right for you, keep the following questions in mind during your appointments:
- Was I able to ask all of my questions? Did they listen to my concerns?
- Did they speak in terms that I was clearly able to understand?
- Did they explain all treatment options available and ask about my preferences?
- Did the doctor and staff treat me with respect and make myself (and my family) feel comfortable and at ease?
Half of the battle in confronting a mesothelioma diagnosis is being informed. You want to make sure you understand your diagnosis, current and potential symptoms, and treatment options available. It is important that your mesothelioma specialist allows plenty of time for all of your questions. A doctor that provides answers with compassion and understanding goes a long way for a mesothelioma patient and their family. Don’t forget to ask for suggested online resources to learn more about mesothelioma, symptoms, treatment options and support groups.
If you feel lost during your appointment or need more information, do not hesitate to ask again. You want to make sure that you leave the office confident in your knowledge, as well as your doctor’s ability to care for you.
Look for a doctor that sees the silver lining and offers you that glimmer of hope by educating you and your family about all of the various treatment options available. Including you as part of this discussion, with special direction on treatment that would benefit you specifically, proves the doctor is truly on this journey with you. Be sure that all of the benefits and drawbacks are clearly outlined for your suggested treatment plan.
Good rapport and mutual respect between a doctor and their patient positively impacts a patient’s outlook and willingness to follow the recommended treatment plan. It allows for open dialogue regarding concerns and symptoms, as well as changes in treatment plans. Make sure you choose a doctor and their staff that makes you and your family feel confident, comfortable and respected.
For those recently diagnosed with mesothelioma, it can be a difficult and exhausting time. After dealing with doctors and appointments, the last thing you want is to add another task to your plate. It is in your best interest, though, to consider contacting a mesothelioma lawyer immediately after your diagnosis. An experienced lawyer will be able to advise you on your eligibility for potential compensation that could assist with medical bills and loss of wages.