Questions to Ask Before Treatment

  • What type and stage of cancer do I have?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • What is the purpose of radiation treatment for my type of cancer?
  • How will the radiation therapy be given? Will it be external beam or brachytherapy? What do the treatments feel like?
  • How long will I receive radiation? How many treatments will I receive per week?
  • What are the chances that radiation therapy will work?
  • What is the chance that the cancer will spread or come back if I do not have radiation therapy?
  • Will I need chemotherapy, surgery, hormone therapy or other treatments? If so, in what order will I receive these treatments? How soon after radiation therapy can I start them?
  • Is there a clinical trial for which I might be eligible? Should I participate in a clinical trial? What are my benefits and risks?
  • How should I prepare for this financially?
  • What are some of the support groups I can turn to during treatment?
  • Will radiation therapy affect my ability to have children?
  • If I have questions after I leave here, who can I call?
  • Do you take my insurance? Is there a co-pay?

Information provided courtesy of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO). Visit for more information.