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Could you recommend a good radiation oncologist in MSK/Sloan?

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Any pink sisters treated in MSK/Sloan? I would like your recommendation of a good radiation oncologist!

My BS recommented someone in NYC. As I live in NJ, I feel impossible to go to NYC everyday. I'm close to MSK Basking Ridge, however, the radiation oncologists seems very young.

Also, it is possible/normal to seek second opinion inside same institute?


Thank you!

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  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 8,068
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    Bumping for michelle816! Does anyone have any insight?

  • maggie15
    maggie15 Member Posts: 931
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    michelle816 - I was treated elsewhere but my daughter is a breast cancer surgical/postsurgical PA at MSK in NYC. In her opinion the ROs are all good; getting hired by MSK is a very competitive process since it is the second ranked cancer institution in the US. The ROs consult with one another so if there is an issue several doctors weigh in on it.

    An experienced doctor does not mean that any treatment is totally risk free. My RO is a professor of radiation oncology at one of the top medical schools in the country with many years of experience and numerous research publications. In spite of that I ended out with a serious side effect that has a 3 in 1000 chance of occurring. He immediately got me in with a top pulmonologist but there wasn't much else he could do. Surgery, chemo, radiation and the many other treatments for BC all have the possibility of causing serious side effects. In most cases the good of the treatment outweighs the chances of something bad happening. All the publicity makes treating breast cancer seem like it's a walk in the park, but, like any medical problem, it might not be.

    My daughter's advice is to seek a second opinion from another institution since the ROs already consult with one another. Best wishes going forward in your treatment.

  • ratherbesailing
    ratherbesailing Member Posts: 118
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    Michelle -

    I echo Maggie15 on experience not being a guarantee. And I would also get a second opinion outside MSK (seriously doubt they would allow one within the hospital.)

    I would add that I had a very-highly regarded RO at MSK, recommended by my fantastic BS. And it was a complete disaster. Someone who is a great researcher may not necessarily be the best clinician. What you really need is someone who pays attention, taking into account any pre-existing conditions or concerns you might have and actually listening if you do end up having side effects. Beware anyone who says, "This is what we always do." While you certainly want to know they are following the science, you also want someone who is treating you as an individual, not blindly lumping you in with a very wide statistical group. You are not a study, you are a person.

    If you do want to stay with MSK and your BS is recommending someone in the city, I would ask if that RO can be your attending, but you can do the treatments at Basking Ridge. If so, you would still need to go into the city once a week during treatment to meet with the RO (and for checkups after, which aren't that often) but it would save you the daily commute during treatment period.

    Wishing you the best.
  • michelle816
    michelle816 Member Posts: 8
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    maggie15 - Thank you so much for your information!

  • michelle816
    michelle816 Member Posts: 8
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    ratherbesailing - Thanks a lot. Really appreciate it!