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Should I seek a second opinion?

Community member asks: Has anyone had experience with getting a second opinion after an initial diagnosis?

  1. We all trust our doctors otherwise we would find new ones. When I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma a few of my close friends pressed me to get a second opinion. Being raised in the era of "Doctor Knows Best" I thought I would be offending my doctor by seeking a second opinion, but everything I read was suggesting I do just that. I reluctantly scheduled an appointment with a myeloma specialist. I felt like I was cheating on my diagnosing oncologist. I am glad I sought that second opinion because the second opinion confirmed my diagnosis and planned treatment protocol. It put my mind at ease having two doctors in agreement on my treatment course. I now realize how important it is to be an active participant in your health care. I gather as much information as I can in order to make informed decisions. I seek multiple opinions whenever I have a new treatment choice to make. My doctors know I do this and are not offended. They actually encourage me to do so and are interested in hearing the other doctor's recommendations. There have been times when two of my myeloma specialists from different treatment centers discussed changes in my treatment protocol on the phone while I listened in.

    1. It is definitely a patient's right to seek a second opinion for a number of reasons. Some of those reasons could be to get a bigger picture of what you are being diagnosed with, finding a specialist for your specific needs, or even just finding a doctor you jive better with. From my personal experience I went for a second opinion because I had the accessibility to a center of excellence down in Houston and they had a doctor who specialized in MDS del5q in young adult women.

      1. It is definitely smart of you to question your treatments and seek second opinions. I think most doctores expect us to do this, but I feel funny about that as well.

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