• How did you receive your cancer bad news? In person, phone call, email, even a text?

    Asked by GregP_WN on Sunday, June 16, 2019

    How did you receive your cancer bad news? In person, phone call, email, even a text?

    Did your doctor call, or a nurse, or another office employee? Did you have the option of how you would be notified? Did you ask how you would be receiving the news of your biopsy, scan, surgery report, etc.? Did you even think about it?
    My first two diagnoses were given to me 1st one, by the ENT Doctor that done the biopsy, in person, the second one was by the oncologist that was treating me for the first dx, in person when I was back at the office for a monthly check up. My third was given to me over the phone by the surgeon that did the needle biopsy

    17 Answers from the Community

    17 answers
    • BugsBunny's Avatar

      Mine was buy a phone call, there was no conversation about how who, or when I would get the information.

      4 months ago
    • CancerChicky's Avatar

      My results and bad news was given in person at the doctor's office. I didn't want a phone call.

      4 months ago
    • Carool's Avatar

      Mine was by phone from the nurse or receptionist (I never found out who she was, nor did I care). I had the biopsy in the breast doctor’s office, and a few hours later, when I was at work, I got the bad news. My partner and I did meet with this breast surgeon shortly thereafter, but I ended up having my surgery and subsequent treatments with another surgeon and hospital.

      4 months ago
    • coolteach51's Avatar

      I received my news by phone. The call came from the doctor who performed the needle biopsy (3 days later). She forwarded the information to my doctor who called me 2 days later to make an appointment. I was on a mandatory evacuation during a CA fire and was at my daughter's house.

      4 months ago
    • beachbum5817's Avatar

      I received mine in person. I met with the breast surgeon on a Tuesday, had my biopsy on Thursday, and got the news the following Tuesday. I'll never forget that day, Dec. 10, 2013. The roller coaster ride of tests, scans and meeting with the oncologist and plastic surgeon started the next day.

      4 months ago
    • Jouska's Avatar

      Mine was my phone. I was in a furniture store and I sat down in a chair and tried to take notes. Most of what she told me, of course, didn't really make sense, it was all so new and confusing. She was very kind but also matter of fact. She was a nurse social worker, I believe. I did meet her later, she taught the chemo course that helped prepare one for chemo. She told me not to search the internet but to wait and talk to the surgeon and the oncologist. She did impress on me the need to schedule an appointment with the surgeon and then the oncologist. In fact she may have even done that for me. The surgeon was amazing. He went through everything over and over. He drew pictures, walked me through the biopsy report.

      4 months ago
    • Teachertina's Avatar

      I had been seeing my GYN for 6 months for the flank pain that I had that was getting worse. He kept giving me antibiotics until I insisted on a CT scan. By the time I got back to work he called asking me to come back to his office. Told me I had a kidney tumor the size of a softball! He had already set up an appointment with the surgeon for that afternoon. Surgery a week later to remove the kidney also damaged my spleen and had to be removed too. I changed my GYN doctor after that! Oncologist has been great for the last 13 years making sure to catch the recurrences I’ve had and treating quickly. He calls me within hours of scans and tests. I love not having to wait for days to find out anything, whether good or bad!

      4 months ago
    • BuckeyeShelby's Avatar

      Mine all happened in stages. I found out I had cancer from the general surgeon who performed my hernia repair. The source was a bit hidden, and I found out it was endometrial and grade 1 over the phone from my surgeon's nurse practioner. Since that info was from the biopsy, she couldn't tell me the stage for certain, although I figured 3 or 4. It was after the surgery that my surgeon told me it was stage IV, while he was rounding on me in the hospital as I recovered from the hysterectomy.

      4 months ago
    • Dltmoll's Avatar

      Mine was a phone call as well. First I received a call from a nurse where I had the biopsy asking if I had heard from my doctor yet (I hadn't because they had sent the results to the wrong doctor, one with the same last name.) After calling his office several times and getting no answer as the they had apparently closed early that day I called my primary care doctor, as I knew he would have gotten the results as well. He returned my call after hours with the diagnosis. The next day my GYN called as well. Not as bad as some, I guess, but not the best way for it to happen.

      4 months ago
    • HOHOHO07's Avatar

      My first diagnosis came from my mother after waking up from biopsy surgery since the surgeon had met with my family; the second time a different biopsy surgeon called me himself since I had to take off immediately after I woke up from the procedure to go to a different state where my father was having heart surgery. However, a good friend went home at lunch to find a message on his answering machine....we agreed that was hard since he was alone at the time.

      4 months ago
    • Kp2018's Avatar

      I was recalled after a screening mammogram to come in for a diagnostic mammogram of one particular area of my left breast. It entailed spot compression and magnification. I was able to study the images obtained while the mammography technician consulted with the radiologist. There it was, clear as can be, an area of DCIS and an outward extension of IDC. There was no doubt in my mind that it was cancer. (I didn't know until I had researched mammography images about the DCIS and IDC, later that day. I just knew that it was cancer)

      Several days afterwards, I had still not heard from my doctor's office, so I called and asked why there had been no contact. It turned out that the doctor was very ill and had not been in the office. I informed her nurse that the result was a BiRads 4 (pretty cheeky of me to make that determination) and that a biopsy should be scheduled ASAP. It was.

      The next week the doctor phoned me to give me the results of the biopsy. She was still obviously not feeling well, but I officially had the news, DCIS and IDC. The doctor's office set up an appointment with the surgeon I had already selected, and away I went. The worst news, that it was Triple Negative, wasn't available until a few days later. I had to enroll in the patient portal to get that result. Never heard from the doctor again. I now see a different primary physician.

      It's amazing how steep your learning curve can be when confronted with cancer. And, being proactive isn't a bad idea either.

      4 months ago
    • kalindria's Avatar

      It was a doctor, in the exam room, after two days of tests.

      4 months ago
    • Terri's Avatar

      He left a message with my husband. My poor husband.

      4 months ago
    • Bug's Avatar

      The doctor who did the biopsy called. My husband had just gone out of town that morning and I was alone. I don't remember if I had the option of how I received the results. I was so anxious about the biopsy that I forgot some things they told me - if they told me.

      4 months ago
    • SandiA's Avatar

      I called my surgeon’s office to get the results. They told me he was not available but they would at least let me know if the results were in. A few minutes later they asked me to hold for the doctor. I guess he became available. So I knew before he said anything.

      4 months ago
    • NeckCancer's Avatar

      Mine was given in the office after having a scope of my throat. They saw the problem with the camera and I was watching it on a screen in front of me while getting scoped. The doctor said "do you see that? That's our problem"

      4 months ago
    • Lawooster's Avatar

      I received a phone call from my Doctor. I live 4 1/2 hrs away from the Breast Center.

      4 months ago

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