A second opinion in oncology is a consultation of an independent expert, to which patients are referred if they have doubts about the correctness of the diagnosis or already prescribed treatment.
HOW TO GET A SECOND OPINION
A second opinion of a German or other european oncologist can always be obtained with the help of our company. One have to fill out the appropriate form on the website or call us. Then we will contact the patient to clarify the details:
- Specify the reason for seeking a second opinion.
- Preliminarily evaluation the quality and completeness of the analyzes and studies already received.
- Suggest what research results should be submitted for a second opinion.
After clarifying all the nuances, electronic versions of medical records are translated into the language of the doctor and sent to the consultant.
WHEN TO GET A SECOND OPINION
Oncology is a special branch of medicine. Almost always we are talking about a disease that can be fatal without qualified medical care. Decisive factors are time and the choice of the most effective treatment methods.
One should seek a second opinion in the following situations:
• doubts about the competence of the attending physician,
• learn about new ways of diagnosing and possible treatment options for a particular cancer,
• make sure that the amount of diagnostics performed is sufficient, which allows choosing an adequate therapeutic strategy.
IN WHAT CASES A SECOND OPINION IS NESESSERY
In oncology, this is:
- rare forms of malignant diseases,
- atypical course of the disease
- the presence of serious comorbidities,
- the need for differential diagnosis with some infectious and somatic diseases,
- the need to prescribe complex treatment, including the use of chemo-, radio-, hormonal and targeted therapy.
A second opinion can be helpful in the following areas:
- the choice of the type of operation - radical, or sparing and organ-preserving;
- participation in research and experimental programs, allowing to receive therapy with new drugs and methods.
An alternative opinion is often sought in the case of diseases such as breast cancer, lung cancer, bones tumors, malignant diseases of digestive organs, nervous system, skin, liver and kidneys, and leukosis. The trophoblastic diseases are relatively rare, as well as:
- vaginal cancer (1% of all cancers in women, often occurs at the age of 50-60 years),
- appendix cancer (0.5% of oncological diseases),
- salivary gland cancer (1 case per 100,000),
- heart cancer (in 50 people out of 1 million),
- breast cancer in men (1 in 1000).
Another example of a rare disease in oncology is chordoma, which affects the spine, the base of the skull and occurs in approximately one person in a million. The disease does not respond well to all types of conservative therapy, it is highly aggressive, although it progresses rather slowly.
SECOND OPINION GOT. WHAT'S NEXT?
A second opinion is not always a guarantee against mistakes.
The following recommendations can help to avoid mistakes:
- Comparison of the two doctors opinions. If both of them are unanimous in their opinion, most likely, the chosen treatment tactics and diagnosis are correct. If opinions do not agree, it may be worth getting another consultation. This is normal practice.
- Ask questions that require reasoning. The right of every cancer patient is to understand why in his case it is better to choose a particular treatment method. What will be the result? What are the advantages of this method? What is the long term outlook?