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I've never met my Oncologist is person

I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by zimmy74 on Sep 12, 2020 12:29 pm

I am about to go into round 5 of 6 chemotherapy sessions after being diagnosed with invasive ductile carsanoma and i have never met my oncologist in person. I have only.met for one examination before starting chemo.my surgeon. I have not been examined during chemotherapy by anyone nor have there been any requests for me.to attend any scanning or what not to see how things are progressing. I understand covid issues and all but is this normal? Should I not be monitored along the way?

 

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by LGS on Sep 12, 2020 12:53 pm

I started chemo in late March, having met my oncologist once in person at the end of February. Finished chemo in late July and never saw him once during that time. I had a couple of telephone calls from him only because I left a message for him to call. This seems to be the new norm. 

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by zimmy74 on Sep 12, 2020 4:08 pm

Was there any testing of progression during your chemo? Did.you have chemo before surgery?

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Kims1961 on Sep 13, 2020 5:27 am

zimmy74‍ 
Hello! cancer during covid has added a new challenge. Congrats on getting to 5 out of 6!!

i had treatment in 2018 for IDC breast cancer. The only testing that was done was bloodwork before each treatment and a heart test (;Muga Scan) as i was doing Herceptin as well. 
My oncologist explained they don’t do any other tests unless i became symptomatic or the blood work was not good. Sounds like this is the same protocol for you. 
That being said, it is a good question to ask your doctor.
Be sure to celebrate after that last chemo!!

kim
Her2+, ER+ Bilateral mastectomy in 2017, followed by chemo and radiation. Mack and Hannah's mom

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by zimmy74 on Sep 13, 2020 11:01 am

 Thank you for the replies and clarification. The last 3 rounds aren't fun amd will be glad they are.over! All the best to you ladies!

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Boby1511 on Oct 15, 2020 5:13 pm

Must depend on the chemo type.... I meet my oncologist every 3 weeks in person. He does a physical exam, checks for bumps I'm thinking. Throat, neck, listens to the lungs, heart.
Then we discuss my lab results and any new or ongoing concerns. Then if the blood is good we move onto chemo the next day.

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Boby1511 on Oct 15, 2020 5:21 pm

OH they also check my weight! (I'm not heavy or light - slightly pudgy maybe, lol)

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Essjay on Oct 15, 2020 9:24 pm

I had my chemo at a rural hospital where my treatment was managed by a family physician who specialized in oncology. The oncologist directed my treatment and was kept informed, I saw her before treatment started to agree what approach we would take and after I completed treatment. I had blood tests and a consult with the local doc every 2 weeks, and this usually included a physical exam of some sort, and a discussion about side effects and management of them. The physical exams picked up the neuropathy for which my dose was reduced, and of course they were on the look out for harmful effects of treatment on my heart or indicators of a progression of the disease. My last ‘visit’ to see my oncologist was by phone, but next week I see her in person - she is hoping to sign me off to a family doctor, only I don’t have one yet!
Triple Negative Breast Cancer survivor since July 2018

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Nix on Oct 16, 2020 6:07 am

Do you see a nurse or someone else before your treatments? Are you being treated at a more rural hospital where the oncologists may consult from another location?

Sometimes my mom (living with bc bone mets) sees a Nurse Practitioner instead of her oncologist if everything is routine, even though she goes to a large cancer centre, I guess it just helps them better manage patient load. She isn’t doing chemo though. She is on ambrose imhibitors and goes every 3 months for blood work/check up.

I’m done 3 of 8 rounds of chemo for invasive ductal carcinoma myself and I see my Oncologist before each treatment (either same day or 2 days before depending how scheduling works out) and I met him a few weeks prior to treatment for an initial exam and consultation (I had already met my surgeon and he had ordered all my additional testing but the oncologist went over scan results with me). I have not had surgery yet so that may also impact things, he examined my lump at the initial meeting and then again this week before round 3 to check progress (over 25% smaller!!). That said, his amazing nurse is who spends the most time with me each visit, discusses side effects, answers any questions she can, etc and then the Oncologist comes in to review my bloodwork and close the loop on anything he needs to “sign off on” (For example: I had a filling fall out a few weeks ago and he had to okay me to go to the dentist, the timing of when I had to do that within my chemo cycle and explain to me that if they found an abcess of any kind he’d need to be in touch with them before we could do my next chemo).

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Stuartm on Oct 18, 2020 12:43 pm

I have 4 oncologists and have met only 1 of them in person since the beginning. I just finished round 6 of chemo 2 days ago (advanced Small Cell Lung Cancer) and now waiting to go for scans in the next couple of weeks. I don't feel neglected, they can read a lot from the numbers as well as the files that are maintained by everyone that you actually DO see in person.

I feel my treatment has been very good and it felt weird but nice ringing the bell.

I live in Victoria, BC, Canada

Good luck everyone,

Stuart

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Boby1511 on Oct 18, 2020 1:29 pm

I am going to have my oncologist for life. Course guessing after next chemo won't see him for a bit. Then the follow up scans and scans.
Oddly my nurse practitioner I will never see again! lol. He phones me once in a while to get an update and he still prescribes my pooper meds but he's hands off now. I have no general practitioner.

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Boby1511 on Oct 18, 2020 1:31 pm

Stuartm‍ 
Congrats on ringing the bell! Hope that means you all done and NED.

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Stuartm on Oct 18, 2020 2:05 pm

Well. I'm not going to get quite that optimistic yet, but it was nice to finish one part of the treatment!

I'm not done yet, we just haven't had much conversation about the radiation part yet.

Who knows, maybe (fingers crossed) I will be lucky. Just kind of hard to feel lucky at this stage. Too soon I guess.

Thanks for the words of encouragement!

It would be nice to find someone in Victoria BC, Canada to interact with, I have found no one here to do that with. I have not personally "spoken" with 1 single person in my shoes  since my diagnosis

Stuart

Re: I've never met my Oncologist is person

Posted by Lacey_Moderator on Oct 19, 2020 11:56 am

Hi Stuartm‍ 

Welcome to our community! Connecting with others in a similar situation can be so helpful.

Here are some discussions about SCLC where you can find others to connect with: https://cancerconnection.ca/search?query=SCLC. To connect with someone in a discussion tag them by typing the @ symbol and their username. You may also want to participate in our Lung cancer check in discussion here: https://cancerconnection.ca/discussions/viewtopic/68/66436.

I'd like to introduce you to LouiseKoneski‍ and Sheryl56‍ who also have experience with SCLC.

Please keep us posted,
Lacey