The doctor can describe treatment choices and discuss the results expected with each treatment option. The doctor and patient can work together to develop a treatment plan that fits the patient's needs.
Treatment depends on where in the pancreas the tumor started and whether the disease has spread. When planning treatment, the doctor also considers other factors, including the patient's age and general health.
These are some questions a person may want to ask the doctor before treatment begins:
- What is the diagnosis?
- Where in the pancreas did the cancer start?
- Is there any evidence the cancer has spread? What is the stage of the disease?
- Do I need any more tests to check whether the disease has spread?
- What are my treatment choices? Which do you recommend for me? Why?
- What are the expected benefits of each kind of treatment?
- What are the risks and possible side effects of each treatment?
- What is the treatment likely to cost? Is this treatment covered by my insurance plan?
- How will treatment affect my normal activities?
- Would a clinical trial (research study) be appropriate for me?
People do not need to ask all of their questions or understand all of the answers at one time. They will have other chances to ask the doctor to explain things that are not clear and to ask for more information.