Questions for Your Doctor

Once a patient has been diagnosed with melanoma here are some of the questions he or she ought to ask:

  1. Can you explain the pathology report to me?
  2. Is the melanoma confined to the top layer of the skin (in situ) or is it invasive?
  3. When will you determine the stage?  What is the depth?  Is it ulcerated?  Does it have mitotic activity?
  4. Do you think the melanoma has spread? Why or why not?
  5. Will surgery be able to remove everything?  Will I need a skin graft?
  6. Do I need a sentinel lymph node biopsy?
  7. What kind of treatment can be expected?  What is the goal of the treatment plan?
  8. What are the side affects of each treatment option?  Could the treatment affect by ability to become pregnant?  If so, should I consult with a fertility specialist before I seek treatment?
  9. Who will make up my health care team, and what is each individuals function?
  10. Who will coordinate all details pertaining to my overall treatment and care?
  11. What kind of long-term follow-up will be needed?
  12. What is the risk of developing another melanoma?
  13. What clinical trials are open to me?  Where are they located and how do I found out more information?
  14. Are there resources available to assist me financially during treatment?
  15. Are there support services available in our community for me and/or my family members?