Disagreement with doctor?

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Question from Mile: I'm a marathon runner, and I want to continue training during chemo and radiation. My oncologist says I really have to cut back, but I heard that exercise is good for breast cancer patients. We're really at an impasse.
Answers - Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. This may be something as simple as a communication problem. Your physician doesn't want you to add additional stress, and may believe that you are trying to run a marathon while undergoing chemotherapy. What you may be talking about is more moderate exercise, which is, as you say, very helpful. There is no medical reason that you can't continue exercise, but your oncologist may be trying to help you have realistic, kinder, gentler expectations for yourself. Having a discussion about this to clarify what you mean and what your oncologist means would most likely clear up the issue.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called The Doctor-Patient Relationship featured Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about how to find the right doctor for you, and how to create and maintain a good, open relationship with your doctor so you can be sure to get all the care and information you need.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in February 2003.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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