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Sometimes people with cancer think about changing doctors. You may be uncomfortable with your doctor or find it hard to talk to them. You may want to see another doctor with more experience in treating your type of cancer or one who suggests a different treatment from your current doctor. Whatever the reason, it can be very hard to ask to change doctors.
If you have problems talking to your doctor but you agree with the treatment plan they’ve proposed, you may want to try to improve the situation before changing doctors.
It’s important to be open and honest with your doctor. Tell your doctor that you’re concerned about how you are communicating with each other. Ask if you can discuss this and find a way to work together to solve it. You may need to schedule a separate visit to discuss the situation.
Other members of your healthcare team might be able to help. Your family doctor, oncology nurse, social worker or patient advocate may be able to suggest ways to improve communication.
If you decide to change doctors, let your doctor know that you would like to see someone else. Tell them you appreciate all their help, but you want to try to find someone else who is better for your needs at this time.
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.