Receiving a diagnosis of bile duct cancer can be overwhelming, and with so many questions running through your mind, you may find it hard to know where to begin. To help start a dialogue between you and your physician, here are five questions to ask after being diagnosed with bile duct cancer.
1. What type and stage of bile duct cancer do I have?
There are several types of bile duct cancer, and knowing which type you have can give you a better understanding of your malignancy. Additionally, knowing the stage of your cancer can help you understand the size of your tumor and the extent of its spread.
2. What treatments will I be having?
Bile duct cancer is most commonly treated with surgery. However, some patients may be advised to undergo other forms of treatment as well, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
3. Are there clinical trials available to me?
Bile duct cancer clinical trials provide access to the latest advancements in treatment before those options are made widely available. If you are eligible, your physician can help you find appropriate opportunities for you.
4. What side effects can I expect?
Many patients find that knowing what to expect during and following their treatment can help them feel better prepared for what is to come.
5. Are there supportive care services I can take advantage of?
Undergoing cancer treatment can come with a number of mental, physical and emotional challenges. Supportive care specialists can help ensure your needs are being met as you undergo treatment and can greatly improve your quality of life.
If you were recently diagnosed with bile duct cancer and are searching for a specialist who can provide you with the individualized treatment and supportive care services you require, request a consultation at Moffitt Cancer Center. Our Gastrointestinal Oncology Program is made up of medical oncologists, surgeons, endocrinologists and others who focus exclusively on cancers of the GI tract. These experts collaborate to ensure each patient’s treatment plan addresses his or her unique diagnosis, while our social workers, counselors, dietitians and other supportive care professionals are available in a single location to help our patients cope with the challenges of undergoing cancer treatment.