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Cancer - Getting a 2nd Opinion

Help Those With Cancer (Tulips) Ex-Pat Cancer Support Team, Jayne Matter and Pam Kennedy are concerned at how few newly diagnosed cancer patients are getting a second, or even third opinion, after their initial diagnosis of cancer.

Jayne Matter said “None of us would make any big decision without first looking at all the options. For example: How many cars did you look at and test drive before you bought the one you're driving now? How many houses did you view before deciding on the one you are living in now? The same goes for new kitchens, bathrooms and a multitude of other decisions. Yet, newly diagnosed cancer patients here very rarely get a second opinion. They often feel rushed into immediate surgery or treatment without seeking another opinion. In most cases a few days delay in starting treatment will not make any difference to their condition. Tulips can help newly diagnosed cancer patients to get that all important second opinion and even a third opinion if the diagnosis’ are different".

Pam Kennedy went on to say “People sometimes do not want to upset their Doctor by telling him or her that they would like to get a second opinion, but there are many reasons for doing so and most doctors will not be worried by this”.

What are the reasons for asking for a second opinion? You may have doubts about your diagnosis, or language barriers may have prevented you from understanding your diagnosis and understanding your test results. You may not be happy with the treatment that has been recommended. You may not feel that you can comfortably talk to your Doctor about your diagnosis or the recommended treatment. There are also many advantages to asking for a second opinion. If both Doctors are in agreement about your diagnosis and treatment this will help you feel more confident about their decision. You may find that you get on better with a different Doctor and have more confidence in what they say. You may be offered treatment that hasn’t been suggested before or a wider choice of treatments so that you can decide which treatment to have. Questions that have not been adequately answered by the first Doctor may be answered by the second; the Doctor’s English may also be better so that you understand more clearly the diagnosis, results of tests and recommended treatment.

Help Those With Cancer Association/Tulips is a great advocate for asking for a second or even third opinion and the Association is always very willing to arrange for newly diagnosed patients to do this. Jayne and Pam are urging anyone who is newly diagnosed to contact them by phone or e mail and they will do everything they can to offer assistance. Jayne covers the West side of Girne and can be reached on 0542 882 6063 and Pam, who covers central Girne and the East side, is on 0542 883 9100.

The Help those with Cancer Association (Tulips) Cancer Support Team provides information, support and guidance to cancer patients and their families.  Information on Tulips is available on this link