5 Important Questions to Ask When Diagnosed With a Serious Illness

5 Important Questions to Ask When Diagnosed With a Serious Illness

Posted On: January 7, 2021

Finding out you have a serious illness might seem like the end. But whether it’s you or a loved one who’s been diagnosed, it’s important to be informed about the condition and options for treatment and end of life.

Sabri Malek, MD, FIPP, a trained pain management specialist, and our compassionate team at Hospice and Palliative Care of California are here for you. We offer a range of hospice and palliative care services from our Pasadena office to help you live your life the way you want.

Receiving your diagnosis can trigger a range of emotions, from anger to sadness. But as you process the news, educating yourself about the condition and what to expect as it progresses gives you control over your care.

Asking these important questions can help you make informed decisions and choose the care that aligns with your values.

How advanced is the condition?

Ask for the specific name of your condition and how severe it is. Take the time to learn about what part of the body it affects, whether it spreads, and how advanced it is at diagnosis.

Receiving a serious or terminal diagnosis is scary, but it’s important to educate yourself about it. Knowing what the condition is and how it affects your body gives you better insight into your health as well as the knowledge you need to make decisions about your care.

What can I expect as the illness progresses?

Some illnesses move quickly, which means you might experience dramatic changes in a short amount of time. Other conditions move slowly, which means it could be several years or longer before the condition gets more severe.

Dr. Malek can only estimate how the illness might affect you, and it’s possible that it could progress faster or slower than anticipated. However, this information is important when you’re making decisions about your care and how you can maintain or improve your quality of life going forward.

What treatments are available?

When you’re diagnosed with a serious illness, ask what treatments are available. While many serious illnesses, like Alzheimer’s disease, HIV/AIDS, and COPD can’t be cured, treatment can minimize your symptoms to help you live a more comfortable life.

Talk with our team about your personal values and what you want to get out of your care, so we can help you determine a treatment plan that makes you comfortable. Your health is unique, so your treatment plan may look very different from someone else’s.

Is palliative care an option?

At Hospice and Palliative Care of California, we offer palliative care to patients with serious illness as a way to improve their quality of life. Palliative care differs from hospice care, because it can continue for years, while hospice care is meant for patients with life expectancies of less than six months.

Palliative care makes your life more comfortable when you have a serious illness. It’s tailored to meet your needs, and often includes specialized pain management, symptom relief, and methods to help you live more independently.

Will my quality of life be prioritized?

Our team’s goal is to give you or your loved one the best end-of-life care possible, so talk to Dr. Malek about what that might look like for you. We treat every patient like family, and we strive to ensure quality of life and dignity are maintained.

We take your lifestyle and needs into consideration at each stage of care. If the time comes, hospice care is centered on making those last days as comfortable as possible. We bring hospice care to you, so you can be at home or wherever you’re most comfortable.

It’s important to remember that these may not be the only questions you or your loved ones have about your illness. Every individual is unique, so don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor about your questions and needs when it comes to living out your days the way you wish.

We’re here to provide personalized care and support when you need it. Request a consultation to talk with Dr. Malek about your options by calling our Pasadena office or scheduling an appointment online.


Read More
Write Us

Get In Touch

Send A Message To Hospice and Palliative Care of California. If you have any questions, concerns, or comments regarding Hospice and Palliative Care of California, please fill out the short contact form below.

Stay Connected

Book an Appointment