Parent Guide

Questions to Ask

Once you've found the right doctor and hospital for your child, you will meet with the physician to begin the treatment phase of care. A number of procedures may be conducted to better diagnose your child's cancer, or "stage the disease." That means that the doctors will try to determine the extent of the disease. Before these procedures begin, ask these questions:

  1. Why is this necessary for my child?
  2. What will it tell you about his or her condition?
  3. Who will perform the test? Where will it be performed?
  4. Is there any preparation for the test?
  5. May I be with my child during the procedure? If not, will a member of his/her team, such as a child-life specialist, accompany him/her?
  6. What, exactly, will occur during the procedure?
  7. Are there any risks? If so, what are they?
  8. Will my child be awake or asleep? If he/she will be asleep, what anesthesia will be used?
  9. Is it likely that my child will feel pain after the procedure? Will there be side effects? If so, what kind of pain control will be used?
  10. Is there any follow-up care I must provide if he/she comes home with me?
  11. What can I do to prepare my child? Can someone on staff help, such as a child-life specialist?
  12. Do you have any written material about the procedure that I may read?