Second medical opinion

According to a recent study, there are about 13 million people globally being diagnosed with cancer every year. Cancer was always looked upon as the dreadful disease as most people who had it, would not survive. But thanks to modern-day advanced medical technologies, cancer is now treatable

A second medical opinion for cancer can reap rich dividends in terms of patient outcomes, both in conforming diagnoses and giving you more treatment options. Oncology India can give you a second medical opinion from any specialist of your choice from our panel of Indian and international cancer specialists.

What is meant by a second opinion?

 Sometimes, if a patients goes for a second opinion, an oncologist will review the complete medical report . He/She can then suggest more treatment options for you based on their expertise and experience. The oncologist may recommend additional testing to confirm the type and stage of the cancer.

Why do you need a second opinion?

 Patient can decide better: When the patient goes in for a second opinion, he gets to know more about the situation and the disease he has to deal with. Usually patients have to deal with a lot of emotional trauma while dealing with the disease. A second opinion helps you and your family members make an informed decision.

More Confidence: A study done recently, shows that one in eight cancer patients have been surprisingly misdiagnosed. A second opinion may suggest a different stage of the cancer. For instance, a second opinion may suggest alternate treatment options if possible. It confirms the fact at times that you are in good hands and puts you in a much-needed positive frame of mind.

Gain knowledge on Advanced Treatment: A few hospitals are able to provide advanced treatment that is not available in every other hospital. This way the patient can get access to advanced treatment options that may suit the patients better.

 Go to the Doctor who suits your needs: Usually doctors say that it is better to take second opinion before finalizing and going in for the treatment. The patient may find the second doctor better or it may help reinstall faith in the second doctor.

Your Type of Cancer is Rare: If the patient is diagnosed with a rare cancer type, it is mandatory to get a second opinion as all doctors may not have the skills required to diagnose and treat this type of cancer.

Untreatable stage: If an oncologist states that your disease cannot be treated, then it is recommended you take a second opinion so that another doctor may explore treatment options with you.

Questions to Ask Your Doctor

It is important to ask your doctor the right questions, so you can be at ease and make an informed decision. Below are a few questions a patient can ask his doctor

Most often oncologists will conduct imaging tests to produce pictures of affected areas of the body. Doctors use this to detect tumours, the level of spread and then determine the next course of action.

After diagnostic tests, the doctor will be in a position to tell you a few things such as diagnostic tests should be able to tell you a few things such as:  the location of the cancer cells, the size of tumor, stage of the cancer.

There is no single line of treatment that can be prescribed for a certain type of cancer. Hence the oncologist will explain to you the different available options and why a particular treatment is best suited for you.

The patient must not hesitate to clarify everything regarding the treatment. The doctor must be in a position to state clearly the effectiveness of the treatment option. The patients must ask the doctor about the effectiveness and the results expected. Doctors should not state a set treatment for all patients and should be flexible enough to change options accordingly

The fact about cancer is that two people undergoing the same treatment might not have the same side effects. It depends on a variety of factors and how the body takes it. It is better to be aware of the side effects so the patient can be prepared for it

Some advanced therapies have evolved that help the patients manage the side effects better. There are other alternate therapies such as naturopathic medicine,nutrition therapy, acupuncture, spiritual support and other stress relieving therapies. It is best to discuss these with your doctor before treatment.


The patient can take all details about the surgeon’s past experience so he can be at peace. The patient can enquire about the facilities available at the hospital for advanced care

A good cancer care team should include surgical, medical and radiation oncologists. Along with these doctors the team includes clinical nurse, naturopathic oncologist, dietician.

The patient must choose a hospital based on his convenience. Also, it is essential that all tests and procedures are conducted at one place and the patient does not have to move around to different places. This adds on to stress which needs to be avoided during treatment.

Doctors need to plan a course of treatment that blends into the patient life. Family support is also needed. Hence the patient must clearly discuss these issues with his doctors before finalizing the treatment.


Second Medical opinion - The difference between trust and confidence

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