Your GP will arrange the first tests to assess your symptoms. If these tests do not rule out cancer, you will usually be referred to a haematologist (or medical oncologist), who will arrange further tests and advise you about your treatment options.
You will probably be cared for by a range of health professionals, called a multidisciplinary team (MDT), who will be responsible for different aspects of your treatment. See below for a list of people who make up this MDT.
The different roles
- haematologist – specialises in diagnosing and treating diseases of the blood, the lymphatic system and bone marrow
- medical oncologist – coordinates the course of chemotherapy; in some cases, may be the main treating specialist instead of a haematologist
- surgeon – diagnoses Hodgkin lymphoma by removing an enlarged lymph node or abnormal tissue during a biopsy
- cancer care coordinator or clinical nurse consultant – supports patients and families throughout treatment and liaises with other members of the health care team
- radiation oncologist – prescribes and coordinates the course of radiotherapy
- nurses – help administer drugs, including chemotherapy; and provide care, information and support throughout all stages of cancer treatment
- dietitian – recommends an eating plan to follow during treatment and recovery
- social worker, psychologist – provide emotional support
- physiotherapist, occupational therapist – help with physical or practical issues