NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Rectal Cancer, Version 1.2017
Making treatment decisions
Questions to ask
What are my options?
There is no single treatment practice that is best for all people. There is often more than one treatment option
along with clinical trial options. Your doctor will review your test results and recommend treatment options.
1. What will happen if I do nothing?
2. Can I just carefully monitor the cancer?
3. Do you consult NCCN recommendations when considering options?
4. Are you suggesting options other than what NCCN recommends? If yes, why?
5. Do your suggested options include clinical trials? Please explain why.
6. How do my age, health, and other factors affect my options? What if I am pregnant?
7. Which option is proven to work best?
8. Which options lack scientific proof?
9. What are the benefits of each option? Does any option offer a cure or long-term cancer control? Are my
chances any better for one option than another? Less time-consuming? Less expensive?
10. What are the risks of each option? What are possible complications? What are the rare and common side
effects? Short-lived and long-lasting side effects? Serious or mild side effects? Other risks?
11. How do you know if treatment is working?
12. What are my options if my treatment stops working?
13. What can be done to prevent or relieve the side effects of treatment?