NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Colon Cancer, Version 1.2014
68 It’s your choice
69 Questions to ask your doctors
73 Weighing your options
74 Websites | Review
Parts 1 through 7 described the cancer
and gave test and treatment options
recommended by NCCN experts.
These options are based on science
and agreement among NCCN experts.
Part 8 aims to help you make decisions
that are in line with your beliefs,
wishes, and values.
It’s your choice
The role patients want in choosing their treatment
differs. You may feel uneasy about making treatment
decisions. This may be due to a high level of stress.
It may be hard to hear or know what others are
saying. Stress, pain, and drugs can limit your ability to
make good decisions. You may feel uneasy because
you don’t know much about cancer. You’ve never
heard the words used to describe cancer, tests,
or treatments. Likewise, you may think that your
judgement isn’t any better than your doctors’.
Your doctors will give you the information you need
to make an informed choice. However, letting others
decide which option is best may make you feel more
at ease. But, who do you want to make the decisions?
You may rely on your doctors alone to make the right
decisions. You can also have loved ones help. They
can gather information, speak on your behalf, and
share decision–making with your doctors. Even if
others decide the best option, you still have to agree
to have treatment by signing a consent form.
On the other hand, you may want to take the lead
or share in decision–making. Most patients do. In
shared decision–making, you and your doctors
share information, weigh the options, and agree on a
treatment plan. Your doctors know the science but you
know your concerns and goals. By working together,
you are likely to get higher quality of care and be more
satisfied. You’ll likely get the treatment you want, at
the place you want, and by the doctors you want.