What to Ask Your Doctor about Stage I Melanoma

When your doctor tells you that you have cancer, it can often be overwhelming. However, it is important to use the time when you are with your doctor to learn as much about your cancer as you can, so that you can gain control of your diagnosis.

After a physician tells a patient that they have melanoma the doctor will often explain a number of important details specific to that patient’s diagnosis. It is often helpful to bring a friend or family member with you. Friends can lend morale support and help you by asking questions and helping you understand what your doctor has said.

The following questions relate to some of the most important aspects of a melanoma diagnosis and can serve as a guide to help you focus on what questions to ask your doctor.

Remember, it is ALWAYS okay to ask your doctor to repeat or clarify something they have said so that you can better understand it.

You may find it helpful to print out these questions and bring them with you to your next doctor’s visit.

Diagnosis Questions Your Notes

What criteria did I meet to be diagnosed with Stage I melanoma?

Should I request a second opinion on the biopsy?

Where there other concerning features on the biopsy such as ulceration or a high mitotic rate?

Treatment Questions Your Notes

Do I need to have a sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB)

If I need a SLNB, how much experience does the doctor your recommending have in doing this procedure?

What treatment plan do you recommend?

What type of follow-up will I need?

How often should I have a skin screening?

Have you looked at all my other moles and lymph nodes?

What is my prognosis?

What are my chances of my melanoma coming back?

What are my chances of developing a new melanoma?

You May Also Wish To Ask Your Notes

What steps can I take to reduce my chances of developing another melanoma?

What is the risk of my family members developing melanoma?

It is important to get a second opinion

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