Your Treatment Options

Facing a serious illness is tough. And having to make decisions about your care, while you’re willing yourself into being a warrior against your aggressor makes decision making critical.
Having survived a Stage IV cancer that had spread to my liver, I can speak on the mental soup a patient has to slog through. We all store away a kind of battle plan against cancer…just in case. “If I had that kind of cancer, I’d _______(fill in the blank). And there is a war underway to influence you on what goes in that blank.
There’s an onslaught of on-line, print, and broadcast advertisements for new forms of treatment for several diseases. From depression to arthritis, there are new medicines for what ails us. The commercials have one goal: make you mention a medication by name, or ask if it’s available for your treatment.
Be careful.
New is not necessarily best.
I believe the most important bit of advice I can offer, having walked through that minefield, is to find someone who will be an advocate for you. They will go to doctor visits and listen for you, take notes, maybe even ask questions. Possibly a relative, or a fellow church member, a close friend….someone who cares, someone you trust, and someone with whom you can talk…frankly…and clearly. The onslaught of information overwhelms you, and you are not thinking clearly all the time.
Your doctor plays a critical role. They bring years of experience, exposure to anecdotal evidence of how medicine works, and even some possible clinical trials.
Pharma has invested millions, some even billions to develop certain drugs. New ones are expensive. Chances are, you will consider different medications. Just don’t get focused on one thing.
One more piece of advice…. listen to the warnings, potential side effects parts of commercials, and read the fine print. Some medications carry significant risk.
It’s not easy. But with some help, you’ll get what you need….maybe not what you want.

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