Oncologist-approved cancer information from the American Society of Clinical Oncology
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Myelodysplastic Syndromes - MDS

This section has been reviewed and approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 8/2013
Questions to Ask the Doctor

ON THIS PAGE: You will find some questions to ask your doctor or other members of your health care team, to help you better understand your diagnosis, treatment plan, and overall care. To see other pages in this guide, use the colored boxes on the right side of your screen, or click “Next” at the bottom.

Talking often with the doctor is important to make informed decisions about your health care. These suggested questions are a starting point to help you learn more about your care and treatment. You are also encouraged to ask additional questions that are important to you. You may want to print this list and bring it to your next appointment, or download Cancer.Net’s free mobile app for an e-list and other interactive tools to manage your care.

  • What subtype of MDS do I have?
  • What risk group am I in? What does this mean?
  • Can you explain my pathology report (laboratory test results) to me?
  • What is my prognosis?
  • How do I find a doctor who specializes in the treatment of MDS?
  • Who will be part of my health care team, and what does each member do?
  • Who will be coordinating my overall treatment and follow-up care?
  • Do I need to start treatment right away?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • What clinical trials are open to me?
  • What treatment plan do you recommend? Why?
  • What is the goal of each treatment? Is it to eliminate the MDS, manage my symptoms, or both?
  • How often will I need to be treated, and for how long will I receive treatment?
  • Will treatment be given in the hospital, or can it be given at the doctor’s office or clinic?
  • Do I need someone to come with me when I get my treatment?
  • What are the possible side-effects of this treatment, both in the short term and the long term?
  • How will this treatment affect my daily life? Will I be able to work, exercise, and perform my usual activities?  
  • Could this treatment affect my sex life? If so, how and for how long?
  • Could this treatment affect my ability to become pregnant or have children? If so, should I talk with a fertility specialist before treatment begins?
  • If I’m worried about managing the costs related to my medical care, who can help me with these concerns?
  • What follow-up tests will I need, and how often will I need them?
  • What support services are available to me? To my family?
  • Is there concern about this disease occurring in other members of my family?
  • Whom should I call for questions or problems?

To continue reading this guide, choose “Next” (below, right) to see some additional resources that may be helpful to you. Or, use the colored boxes located on the right side of your screen to visit any section.

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