Talking to Your Health Care Provider about Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
You have a unique medical history. Therefore, it is essential to talk with your doctor about your personal risk factors and/or experience with Hodgkin’s disease. By talking openly and regularly with your doctor, you can take an active role in your care.
General Tips for Gathering Information
Here are some tips that will make it easier for you to talk to your health care provider:
- Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and think of questions to ask.
- Write out your questions ahead of time, so you don't forget them.
- Write down the answers you get, and make sure you understand what you are hearing. Ask for clarification, if necessary.
- Don't be afraid to ask questions or ask where you can find more information about what you are discussing. You have a right to know.
Specific Questions to Ask Your Health Care Provider
About Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- What is the stage of my cancer?
- Was I diagnosed early?
About Treatment Options
- How do we best treat Hodgkin’s disease?
- What are all my options?
- What are the risks and benefits associated with this treatment plan?
- How long will treatment last?
- Will the treatment affect my long term fertility? What can I do about this?
- Are there side effects I should watch for?
Are there any medications I can take?
- What are the benefits and side effects of the medications?
- How serious are the side effects?
- How can I manage the side effects?
- What will I need to change in my daily routine?
- How will I feel during treatment?
- What will I need to do to take care of myself during the treatment period?
- What will we do if the treatment does not succeed?
- Are there any alternative or complementary therapies I should consider?
About Lifestyle Changes
- How can I protect myself against infection?
- Do I need to make changes in my diet?
- Can I exercise? If so, how much?
About Your Outlook
- How likely is it that my treatments will kill all the cancer cells?
- How do I know that my treatment program is effective?
- Should I consider participating in a clinical trial?
- Can you recommend a support group or other patients who I can talk with?
National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
Last reviewed February 2003 by
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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