“One thing I wished I'd known at the beginning of my metastatic diagnosis was the importance of having an oncology breast specialist,” says Jen Heatherly, 47, a health coach in Vista, CA. “When I was diagnosed with stage IV cancer, the oncologist in the hospital did a great job getting me started on oral medications. However, when that line of treatment failed, and we were discussing other options, he made the comment, ‘You know more about the new drugs than I do,’" she says.
"My confidence in him went from about an 8 to 0 instantly, so I started asking other people with cancer about their doctors," Heatherly continues. My current breast oncologist is comfortable and confident when addressing my questions. At one point, we discussed a clinical trial, but because my current quality of life is good, she didn’t feel that the risk of side effects was worth it. I highly value her opinion.”