Talking to Your Doctor
If you have been diagnosed with melanoma, you probably have a lot of questions about the disease: What is the treatment? Could it come back? How serious is it?
It is important for you to have open discussions with the members of your health care team. Look for doctors who listen to your concerns, speak in a way that you can understand, and take time to explain things that you don't understand.
- Your health care team may include:
- a dermatologist (a skin specialist)
- a surgeon
- an oncologist (a cancer specialist)
- a pathologist
Here are some ideas that can help when you have a doctor's appointment:
- Write down a list of your questions BEFORE you go, and bring it with you.
- Bring a trusted friend or family member with you, to help you listen. This person can also take notes, so that you don't have to worry about remembering everything.
- If you go alone, don't feel self-conscious about taking notes. Think about bringing a small tape recorder and asking the doctor if you can record the conversation, to help you remember things later.