If you’ve been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, we recommend getting a second opinion before choosing where you’ll be treated. Getting a second opinion allows you to feel more confident that you’ve made the best possible choice. While you can benefit from a second opinion at any point during your care, it is most valuable when you are first diagnosed and have the widest array of treatment options.
How a Second Opinion Can Help
When seeking a second opinion, you want access to pancreatic cancer experts who understand this disease in greater depth than the general oncologists in your local community. A second opinion will help you:
- Feel confident that your cancer has been correctly diagnosed. There are several types of pancreatic cancer, and evaluating the stage of pancreatic tumors can be complex. Pathologists, radiologists, and gastroenterologists from Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) are experts in diagnosing pancreatic cancers and have access to the latest technologies to help ensure we know as much about your cancer as possible.
- Consider state-of-the-art options. Getting a second opinion about your diagnosis may result in identifying better, more advanced, or aggressive options for treatment, including minimally invasive techniques, such as laparoscopic surgery; the latest radiation therapies, including proton therapy; and clinical studies of new chemotherapies.
- Understand the benefits of specialized, multidisciplinary care. The team of pancreatic cancer specialists from SCCA can offer in-depth understanding of various treatment options. Our team members have first-hand knowledge of current research, and perhaps most importantly they offer a wealth of experience in treating pancreatic cancer.
- Start with a course of therapy that’s tailored for you. We focus on you, not just your cancer, when developing a treatment plan. This means we consider your goals, plans, beliefs, values, and preferences in order to design your treatment holistically.
- Understand whether genetics played a role in the development of your cancer and whether it might impact your treatment. Depending on our findings, you and your family members may benefit from SCCA’s Gastrointestinal Cancer Prevention Program.
SCCA—the only National Cancer Institute–designated comprehensive cancer center in the Pacific Northwest—is home to the region’s only pancreatic cancer specialty clinic, where our medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists, and supportive care professionals come together weekly to discuss and care for people with pancreatic cancer as a collaborative team. This means that during a single visit you get the second opinion of not one doctor but an entire group of experts representing several specialties.
Schedule a Second Opinion
We recognize that pancreatic cancer is serious. Getting a second opinion does not have to delay the start of your treatment. We aim to see you within one week. Usually patients are seen in our Pancreatic Cancer Specialty Clinic at the main SCCA clinic on Lake Union. To help ensure you’re seen in a timely fashion, we may schedule you with one of our medical oncologists at the main SCCA clinic, EvergreenHealth, or UW Medicine’s Northwest Hospital & Medical Center.
To schedule a second opinion with an SCCA doctor, call (855) 557-0555.