Questions to ask about risks
The following are questions that you can ask the healthcare team about the risk for developing cancer. Choose the questions that fit your, or your child’s, situation and add questions of your own. You may find it helpful to take the list to the next appointment and to write down the answers.
- What are the risk factors for this type of cancer?
- What puts someone at higher than average risk for this type of cancer?
- Does our family history put us at higher risk for this type of cancer?
- If I have this type of cancer, are my children at higher risk?
- What are the chances of developing this type of cancer?
- What lifestyle factors (such as diet, smoking, drinking alcohol or workplace exposures) affect the risk for this type of cancer?
- What can I do to reduce the risk of developing this cancer?
Great progress has been made
Some cancers, such as thyroid and testicular, have survival rates of over 90%. Other cancers, such as pancreatic, brain and esophageal, continue to have very low survival rates.