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True Family Women's Cancer Center

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When it comes to second opinions, here is ours

With a diagnosis as life-changing as cancer, it’s vitally important to get the right advice. The fact is that some complex cancers can be extremely tricky to diagnose. A recent study by the American Cancer Association reported that when providing a second opinion on 742 cancer cases, pathologists changed the diagnosis nearly 70 times.

Here at the True Center, we agree that second opinions are often a good idea. We’re happy to give them to patients who have received a diagnosis or begun treatment at another health-care facility. And we support our own patients in seeking another opinion if that will give them additional peace of mind.

Many physicians’ point of view

In spite of many compelling reasons to ask for another opinion, many people are reluctant, because they don’t want to offend their physician – especially if they plan to receive important and extended care from him or her. You may be surprised to learn that the vast majority of physicians actually welcome second opinions, as they either validate their own thinking or give them additional information that may alter a proposed treatment plan.

Get a second opinion at Swedish

If you’d like a second opinion from Swedish, call one of our care coordinators at 1-855-TRUECTR. They will help determine which physician you should see and help set up an appointment. They can also help arrange for medical records, images and lab reports to be sent to the right place.

What to ask

If you decide to seek a second opinion, here are some questions you should consider asking:

  • Have you reviewed all the reports and images related to my case?
  • Was the image/lab test/biopsy report sufficient to make a firm diagnosis?
  • Would another test give us more complete information?
  • If you agree with the initial diagnosis, can you confirm or recommend revisions to the proposed treatment plan?
  • Can you reassure me that we have explored all our options?