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To expect a diagnosis, not simply a letter giving me an appointment at the Cancer Clinic?

(27 Posts)
ThePawOfSympathy Wed 19-Mar-14 08:37:07

Had a biopsy a few weeks ago, the consultant said she would write to me within the next two to four weeks with the results. Got a letter the other day, giving me "the earliest possible appointment" at the cancer clinic. So quite unsurprisingly I am shitting myself now - the cancer I was tested for is hereditary and has seen off an alarming number of my relatives, and it has been a messy and painful death. Why couldn't they have written with the outcome, and saying that they will discuss treatment options with me at the next appointment? I am, obviously, expecting the worst, given that only one of my relatives who has contracted this cancer has lasted more than five years. And am barely holding it together at work and at home with the worry and stress.

londonrach Wed 19-Mar-14 08:40:04

Holding your hand here and hoping all okay. Why don't you phone the doctor and ask him to ring you as you are worried. Sounds like they referred you on. Xxxxxxx

PissesGlitter Wed 19-Mar-14 08:40:51

I would give them a call and explain that the letter has shocked and frightened you
They may be able to give you some more info

LIZS Wed 19-Mar-14 08:44:44

sad agree with ringing up the doctor who has referred you. I wonder if there was supposed to be a letter/appointment in between but that has taken longer to process.

whatever5 Wed 19-Mar-14 08:45:37

You poor thing. How long do you have to wait before the appointment? I would agree that you should give them a call.

ThePawOfSympathy Wed 19-Mar-14 08:48:26

Two weeks wait. I have called the clinic, and went in there, but no-one can tell me anything (and it says on the letter, in bold, not to call, as they can't tell me anything over the phone. Should I try calling the GP who referred me?

Jellymum1 Wed 19-Mar-14 08:50:35

Call the gp. The two week wait is a frightening pathway but does not necessarily mean can

Flexiblefriend Wed 19-Mar-14 08:51:15

That is appalling! I would say definitely contact the GP who referred you. I hope all is OK OP.

Jellymum1 Wed 19-Mar-14 08:51:50

Sorry pressed post...

I work at a cancer clinic but we do see non cancer patients who are at risk...maybe its a genetics clinic of some sort or s

Jellymum1 Wed 19-Mar-14 08:53:56

Sorry damn phone!!! Hope everything is ok op. Sometimes if someone is deemed high risk they will be kept on close surveillance. Try not to panic too much.

ThePawOfSympathy Wed 19-Mar-14 08:54:36

Jelly - thank you. Unfortunately I already have a separate appointment (at the same clinic) with the geneticist, so I don't think it is that.

londonrach Wed 19-Mar-14 09:01:21

When they found out mum had breast cancer they phoned and told her to come to the clinic and bring someone with her. The fact that it's a two week wait is positive. Please ring the gp. thanks

londonrach Wed 19-Mar-14 09:03:09

Mum was told to come to the clinic that day. Sorry it's posting too quick. Please phone gp xx

whatever5 Wed 19-Mar-14 09:08:21

If the clinic won't give you any information, I would make an appointment with your GP. It's not fair to make you wait like this.

tobiasfunke Wed 19-Mar-14 09:14:06

This is how it works. They wouldn't give results over the phone or in a letter you need to see a consultant who goes through the results with you. Two weeks round here is actually quick for an urgent appointment. It's rubbish but I'm afraid that's how it is. I hope everything will be ok.

BsshBossh Wed 19-Mar-14 09:15:02

Definitely call your GP who should have all your info from the biopsy. So sorry you're going through this. It sounds like they missed a step ie they sent you the letter perhaps assuming you'd already been informed the outcome?

isisisis Wed 19-Mar-14 09:15:04

I can understand how frightening this is but I would hope the length of time before the appt is a positive thing. Usually if it's bad news you'd be in ASAP (I used to work in a specialist oncology unit). We had a policy of never ever giving any results via post/phone, there's to much potential for distress & misunderstanding.
It might be worth giving the consultants secretary a call rather than the clinic reception & saying you understand they can't give you any results but you're worried & would quite happily take a cancellation at short notice to be seen quicker.
It sounds like your history is quite complicated so it may just be an appt to go over results & discuss plans for future monitoring/how to reduce risk factors.
Hope things work out well for you.

FutTheShuckUp Wed 19-Mar-14 09:30:12

This must be so frightening for you. Echoing what everyone else has said, holding your hand for as long as you need

thegreylady Wed 19-Mar-14 09:34:15

Please call your GP now. I did this when I got my mammo call back and she showed me the letter she had received from the breast clinic.

MorganLeFey Wed 19-Mar-14 10:44:27

Sorry to hear you're in limbo & didn't get the letter you expected.

Your GP may or may not have more info than you at this stage - often specialist results won't go directly too them... Only the clinic letters.

Although it might be helpful to see them for support in general - even if they did have more info I'm not sure that they'd be better placed to 'break news' & answer the what-next? questions than the specialist clinic & might cause more not less stress..?

firesidechat Wed 19-Mar-14 10:53:36

My husband has cancer and they have never given sensitive info via a letter. They like to see the patient face to face, explain the facts, allow the patient to ask questions and give as much reassurance as they can.

The wait is rubbish though and I hope it is good news after all.

DidoTheDodo Wed 19-Mar-14 11:00:01

This does sound very frightening for you. I'm another one who would call the GP. I do hope everything is ok.

(I have no experience of this at all, so am not talking from any position of knowledge, just how I would feel if it was me)

shewhowines Wed 19-Mar-14 11:14:15

I'd try ringing and asking for an earlier appointment. Cry on the phone if you need to. It worked for me - although it wasn't a pre-planned strategy sad

flowers I know how hard the wait is.

NurseyWursey Wed 19-Mar-14 11:29:23

It's horrible waiting but they really like to go through the results face to face rather than a letter on the phone, a lot of people would complain about being given the information that way anyway.

I really hope it's good news for you, please keep us updated x

brokenhearted55a Wed 19-Mar-14 11:30:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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