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Should I get a breast cancer review locally, or in the US?

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Dear Doc,

I had a mammogram which noted a suspicious finding. My doctor told me that she will be referring me to the local surgeon to review me and possibly do a biopsy to confirm the diagnosis. My family in the US wants me to travel to them to have the breast reviewed by their doctor.{{more}}

What should I do?

Lorene

Dear Lorene,

This is a regular occurrence that many persons are presented with when family members abroad, with a good heart, want them to be seen by their doctor. Wherever help can be received with respect to health, it must always be explored, except for situations where there are ambiguities.

If you don’t have a visa to travel to the US, you are not guaranteed that you will be given one and time is always the essence with reference to early diagnosis and effective management. If you have to apply for a visa, and then plan travel, one has to think of the possibilities of waiting for that opportunity and being turned down, which is calculated as time lost.

Medical care in the US is expensive, relative to our own situation and it must always be noted that it serves best to exhaust locally available resources which are affordable and then travel for what is not available. Evaluations like biopsies and surgery in many cases can be done locally and then travel for chemotherapy and radiotherapy is needed.

Well-meaning family and friends abroad must always work in concert with locally available resources as much as possible, to ensure the best outcome in all situations.

Doc

SVG Cancer Society,
P.O. Box 709, Kingstown.
Email: svgsocietycancer@gmail.com
Phone:526-7036

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