(9) Metastatic Breast Cancer
I want to be able to participate in the decision making about my treatment. How can I do this?
Patients deserve to be empowered so that they can actively participate in decisions about their care and treatment.
Some physicians are reluctant to empower women in this way. It is a patient’s right and should be a key factor in deciding where she wants to receive her treatment. Seek an oncology team that specializes in breast cancer and has a great deal of experience in treating and managing patients with metastatic disease.
The purpose of treating your metastatic breast cancer is to help you live as long as possible with a good quality of life. Since different people have different beliefs and values, it is important that you communicate these to your health care team so that everyone can be working for the same goals.
Studies show that the more we empower a patient and give her a solid knowledge base about her breast cancer, the more satisfied she is with her care. This includes educating other family members when appropriate.
There will be family members who will be helping with your care, so they need to understand the treatment plan and know what to expect.