I’ve Just Been Told I Have Multiple Myeloma
Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer. And there are very few things scarier than being told you have cancer. You may feel like you’re in shock. You may not even want to believe what the doctor has told you. And there are probably so many questions you want to ask but think you can’t because you don’t know where to start.
First of all, it’s OK to be overwhelmed. And it’s OK to feel afraid. But you shouldn’t let those feelings stop you from finding out as much as you can about your cancer and about the options you have. Because the more you know, the less helpless and afraid you will feel. And the more you know, the better you will be able to work with your health team to make the best choices for your treatment.
To decide the best course of treatment, your doctor needs to know as much as possible about your cancer. This will involve getting a variety of tests and working with more than one health care professional.
For example, your health care team will include a doctor who specializes in cancer called a medical oncologist, and an oncology nurse. You may also see cancer specialists with different specializations, such as a radiation oncologist. The team will answer all your questions and guide you through each of the steps that you’ll take before, during, and after treatment. Your team will let you know what tests are being done and what the results mean. They’ll help you in making treatment decisions. Remember, you can always ask for a second opinion to ensure that you feel comfortable with your plan.
People with multiple myeloma now have more treatment choices than ever before. There is more hope for survival. Doctors keep finding new ways to help people with multiple myeloma. There is more being learned about this type of cancer and its prevention, detection, and treatment every day.