You Always Have Options
When you get a diagnosis of breast cancer from your doctor, it’s not uncommon to get a second opinion. An accurate diagnosis is essential to ensure the most effective treatment. Your current doctor will frequently suggest a second opinion, if only to confirm the recommended course of action.
There are also many reasons why you may want to seek another opinion during the course of your cancer care. Not all cancers are the same and not all treatment plans are absolutely clear. Whether you want expert confirmation, lack understanding or confidence in your treatment plan, have a rare or unusual type of cancer, your cancer isn’t responding to current treatment — it’s reassuring to know that you have options through a second opinion.
In addition to providing a better understanding of your diagnosis, a second opinion can also shed new light on treatment options and give you confidence in how to proceed with your care. Advances in our understanding of breast cancer have opened up new treatment options or clinical trial opportunities, including targeted drug therapies and tissue-conserving procedures proven to greatly reduce pain and nausea. Because physicians may differ in their approach to treating breast cancer, it’s very important to check with a breast cancer expert to know you’re receiving the best treatment for you.
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Coordinating with your Treating Physician
At the Breast Cancer Program at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in Baltimore, MD, a second opinion requires only that you or your doctor send us your pathology slides, key medical records and signed paperwork requesting the opinion.
The review process normally takes several days, after which we will send a report of all findings to your physician and/or others you may designate, and your slides and other materials are returned. However, before getting a second opinion, it’s best to check with your insurance company to see if there are any limitations in coverage.
The Johns Hopkins Difference
If you choose to be treated at Johns Hopkins, you may be able to begin treatment immediately. Based on the results, our experts can provide you with an individualized treatment plan before you leave. At Johns Hopkins, you can feel confident knowing our multidisciplinary cancer clinics combine the very best resources and specialists — all within in a single location — for a highly coordinated experience that delivers exceptional care while conserving time, money and energy.