If you have been diagnosed with cancer, getting a second opinion on the diagnosis and treatment options will give you confidence while making a decision.
You do not need a referral for our services. The staff at MSKCC India will coordinate with you and your loved ones to schedule the services you need. Our team will help gather all your medical records (test reports, images, and other crucial information) and suggest services according to your need.
If you have been diagnosed with cancer, getting a second opinion on the diagnosis and treatment options will give you confidence while making a decision. As not everyone needs a comprehensive second opinion, we also offer video, written, integrative medicine, pathology, and radiology consults.
Why Do You Need a Second Opinion for Cancer?
Getting your treating physician’s cancer diagnosis and treatment plans reviewed by another specialist or specialists is called a second opinion. As cancer is a complex condition, it is always wise to get a second opinion on the cancer diagnosis or at any step during the treatment. With scientists and experts finding new ways and treatment options to treat cancer and its complications every day, there is always a chance that the specialist you get a second opinion from might suggest a different and less invasive treatment plan (which is more acceptable to you) or you stand a chance to get into a clinical trial or any study that is testing a new cancer drug. Sometimes, a second opinion results in a change in diagnosis. For example, a tumor thought to be in its early stages might have spread more than initially thought, or a benign growth can be misdiagnosed as a malignant tumor, etc. In such instances, a second opinion can be lifesaving. But always remember to get a second opinion from cancer specialists in hospitals that are dedicated only to cancer care. MSKCC specialists are world-renowned experts in their fields. MSKCC specialists know more about cancer today than ever before, and the outlook has never been better. More than half of people diagnosed with cancer can be cured now, and many others will live long lives even with cancer. As a pioneer in research, MSKCC offers you the best available treatment for your exact condition. We deliver exceptional care and support by tailoring treatment plans for each person we care for — no matter where they are in their treatment journey.
When to Get a Second Opinion for Cancer?
Most patients feel that they are offending the treating doctor by considering a second opinion. This is one of the most common reasons for people to reach out to a specialist for their opinion. But remember that getting a second opinion is normal, and nowadays, most doctors encourage getting a second opinion. A second opinion helps you trust the doctor’s cancer diagnosis and treatment. While it is absolutely acceptable to get a second opinion whenever you see fit, but in case of the following situations, make sure you seek another opinion:
- Unclear or inconclusive diagnosis.
- Fears of misdiagnosis.
- Severe side effects experienced during the current treatment plan.
- Before agreeing to major surgery.
- Chances of survival are less in the suggested treatment plan.
- Current treatment is not effective.
- Experimental treatment plan.
- Or if you do not trust the doctor’s diagnosis or treatment plan.
Benefits of Getting a Cancer Second Opinion from MSKCC Specialists:
- With the Virtual services offered at MSKCC India, you can directly access cancer experts in MSKCC, New York, the world’s oldest and largest private cancer institute, without the need to travel.
- When it comes to cancer, even the smallest mistakes in choosing the right treatment can have drastic repercussions. A second opinion can help you avoid these mistakes and make well-informed decisions.
- Rare cancers usually get misdiagnosed, and the treatment fails. Consulting a specialist will not only confirm the diagnosis but will also provide additional information on the staging and cancer subtypes, which will help form a more specific treatment plan.
- Patients get to play an active role in choosing the right treatment, and they learn more about their condition. This gives them confidence in the treatment, which can improve the overall treatment outcome, and the patient or family gets intellectually equipped to handle and overcome the illness.
- As there are various treatment options for a particular type of cancer, consulting an expert will open new and advanced diagnostic tests and treatment plans. The new treatment plan could have fewer side effects on your mental and physical health, reducing recovery time.
- Never consider a second opinion as an unnecessary expenditure. Second opinions can help ensure that the patient is receiving the most appropriate treatment, helping save time and reduce costs for patients. A change in diagnosis or treatment can prevent patients from undergoing unnecessary invasive tests and treatment.
- During the video consultation with the MSKCC oncologist, your treating or local doctor and a family member or caregiver can be present. This will give you confidence, and you will feel more comfortable during the call.
Benefits of Getting a Cancer Second Opinion from MSKCC Specialists:
- Collection of relevant medical records, pathology materials, and images for transfer to consulting specialists.
- Organization and review of medical records by MSKCC India Medical Team to assess medical needs and to help prepare specific questions for consulting specialists.
- Based on the case, every patient is personally matched to an MSKCC specialist.
- Written remote second opinion report provided by a physician specialist on the medical staff at Memorial Sloan Kettering for an opinion on diagnosis and treatment options, including answers to your specific questions.
- Debriefing with MSKCC India Oncologist, explaining the consultation in easy-to-understand terms and helping you understand recommended next steps.
- Transfer of the report to your treating physician.
- Packaged Video Consultation - Speak face-to-face with an MSKCC oncologist specialist and a local doctor. This service includes a review of your pathology and radiology tests by MSKCC expert pathologists and radiologists prior to the video consultation to ensure you have the most accurate diagnosis.
- Packaged Written Consultation - An MSKCC oncologist will provide a detailed written review of your full medical record. Similar to a packaged video consultation, this service includes a review of your diagnostic tests by MSKCC expert physicians prior to the written consultation to ensure you have the most accurate diagnosis.
- Video Consultation - Speak face-to-face with an MSKCC oncologist specialist and a local doctor.
- Written Consultation - An MSKCC oncologist who specializes in your disease will provide a detailed written review.
- Integrative Medicine Written Consultation - An integrative medicine consultation can be added to a video or written consult. Touch therapy, mind-body therapy, acupuncture, exercise programs, nutritional counseling, and consultation on supplements, herbs, etc., are included in the specialized advice and programs.
- Radiology Review - You can get an MSKCC radiologist to review up to two imaging studies.
- IMPACT Testing - IMPACT testing identifies genetic mutations in almost 505 genes, allowing patients to be matched to available targeted therapies or clinical trials. This must be completed in conjunction with a packaged written consult.
- Standard - An MSKCC pathologist will review stained H&E slides.
- Advanced - This includes an MSKCC pathologist reviewing stained H&E slides and block re-cutting and staining and/or IHC or special stains from the MSKCC laboratory.
*Note:* Remote services cannot be rushed or hastened as these services are non-emergent. In case of a medical emergency, avoid relying on electronic communications and go to the nearest emergency room or call the local emergency service. We recommend not to postpone or decline treatment once your clinical team deem it is medically necessary at the given stage.