Each heading slides to reveal information.
Questions to Ask Yourself
How do my priorities impact decision-making?
All treatments have benefits and consequences. You must make a choice that reflects your individual situation. Your work life, family life, or hobbies can influence what your priorities are for treatment. Your doctor will also consider your priorities from a medical aspect. One treatment does not fit all situations, and it is a matter of making the most appropriate match--one that you believe in.
Talk to your doctor about your expectations. For example, is hearing preservation possible? Consider whether your current hearing level is conducive for a hearing preservation treatment approach. Some patients may prioritize facial function or other factors, based on profession or lifestyle. You must be comfortable asking your doctors questions about how your priorities will be taken into consideration when choosing a treatment.
Questions to Ask your Doctor
QUESTIONS FOR THE RADIATION TREATING MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS
If you have opted for radiation treatment of your tumor, you may want to ask some of the following questions of your radiation therapist, neurosurgeon, or neurotologist. Be sure that you are comfortable with the responses:
- How many tumors have been treated with radiation at your center in the past year?
- Will this be a one-dose procedure, or will it consist of several smaller doses?
- What type of radiation treatment (e.g., Gamma Knife, LINAC, CyberKnife, Novalis, proton beam, etc.) do you perform? What are the advantages of this type of radiation over the others that are available?
- Why do you recommend this form of radiation treatment over others?
- Is the size of my tumor safe to treat with radiation?
- What are the long-term side effects of this treatment?
- What are the more serious complications such as malignancy, hydrocephalus and what are the relative frequencies?
- How many of your patients have experienced continued growth of their tumors following treatment? If this happens to me, what would be my best follow-up procedure? Can I have microsurgery, or can I repeat radiation treatment?
- After radiation treatment, may I go about my business as before treatment, or are there any special precautions I should take?
- When and how often should I schedule follow-up MRIs after treatment? Will I get these MRIs for the rest of my life?