Question checklist

You may find this checklist helpful when thinking about the questions you want to ask your doctor. If your doctor gives you answers that you don’t understand, ask for clarification.

  • What type of cancer do I have?
  • How far has the cancer spread? How fast is it growing?
  • What is my prognosis? How long am I likely to live?
  • What treatment do you recommend and why?
  • Are there other treatment choices for me? If not, why not?
  • Are there any clinical trials I can join?
  • Are there any complementary therapies that might help?
  • What treatment do you suggest for any pain or discomfort?
  • What are the risks and possible side effects of each treatment?
  • What will happen if I don’t have treatment?
  • Can I access palliative care?
  • Can I call the palliative care team at any time?
  • Does the palliative care team inform my GP and other specialists about my care?
  • Do I have to pay for any palliative care services?
  • Can you help me talk to my family about what is happening?

More question suggestions

Visit palliativecare.org.au to download Asking Questions Can Help: An aid for people seeing the palliative care team.


This information was last reviewed in December 2016
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