Questions to Ask your doctor about Chemotherapy

Thinking about chemotherapy for breast cancer can be overwhelming. We may think we know a lot about it from movies, books, and friends, but it’s important to know the facts about chemotherapy before starting treatment. Here are some questions you can ask your doctor so you feel more informed.

But first one very important tip: If possible, please bring someone with you to your appointment. You will be hearing a lot of new information. A second set of ears and someone to take notes will be very helpful. If you don’t have someone to go with you, please contact Forge’s Client Services Coordinator, Janet Dees, at (205) 990-5367 or [email protected]. She may be able to match you with a peer mentor who has had breast cancer, too, and can go with you to your appointment.


  1. Why do I need chemotherapy?
  2. When should I begin chemotherapy?
  3. What drugs will I take and why?
  4. How will chemotherapy be given? How many treatments will I have?
  5. If I have to go to the hospital for the treatment, how long will each treatment take? Will I need someone to go with me?
  6. What are the possible side effects? How long will they last? What are the long-term risks?
  7. Are there medicines I can take to prevent or treat side effects?
  8. Which side effects should I report to you?
  9. Are there any integrative and complementary therapies that may help me cope with side effects?
  10. During treatment, will I be able to continue my normal activities (work, exercise, etc.)?
  11. Is chemotherapy covered by health insurance?

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Forge’s Client Services Coordinator, Janet Dees, at (205)990-5367 or [email protected].

Stay up to date with Forge's resources and opportunities for breast cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers by signing up for our monthly emails.