Do we need a second opinion?

A second opinion in cancer care is never a bad idea. There are many reasons why a provider may suggest a second opinion.

This step generally involves some set up and travel. As the caregiver, you may want to talk with the patient what they hope to get out of this visit.

Some common reasons for a second opinion include:

  • Talk about a specialized treatment that is only offered at certain places (for example, surgery, transplant, or clinical trial).
  • Talk with a provider who specializes only in a particular type of cancer. This is very helpful if the case is more complex than the “usual.”
  • Find a “better fit” with a doctor. It’s important to have someone you can talk openly with.

What needs to happen before we schedule a second opinion visit?

When there is a request for a second opinion, a consult is placed. Our team starts the process by contacting that location. Our team will help make sure all records, images, and pathology slides are sent. They will follow along until the second opinion visit is scheduled.

We will send all clinical information including:

  • Medical Records: Some locations share the same medical record system as we do. For others, we fax the records.
  • Images: Similarly, for some locations, we can upload the images or scans directly to their computer system. For others, we can create a disc of the images for the visit. We can help create the disc if images were done at one of the LG Health location.
  • Pathology slides: Most locations ask to review pathology slides prior to the visit. This allows their pathologist to confirm that they agree with the diagnosis.

How do we get ready?

Make sure all information is prepared to make the day of the visit as stress-free as possible. This includes how to get there such as driving directions, where to park, taking the train, etc. Our team can help find this information if needed. It is often also available on the other location’s website.

On the day of the visit, make sure to bring:

  • Your photo ID and insurance card
  • A list of all your medicines
  • A list of your questions with paper to take notes
  • Any records you have that may be helpful
  • Your binder to organize information

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